do strawberries and potato soup go together? in photography they do!

A friend of mine is having oral surgery tomorrow. I will be going to pick her up, taking her for the surgery, bringing her back home and staying with her for a while--making sure she is doing okay and has something nourishing and soft to eat. She is almost 81 years young and she mentioned potato soup when I took her a couple of weeks ago for pre-op visit.

I am not a huge "make from scratch" person nowadays--I spent many years doing that and now I'd rather spend my time painting or photographing--anyway, I went looking on the internet for a good "easy potato soup" recipe and came up with this--the link is right here.

I played with it just a little bit --

left out one of the cans of chicken broth

added a can of cream of potato soup

a can of evaporated milk

1/4 cup of half and half--actually I didn't measure this--I am just guessing at how much I used

quite a bit of white pepper

made sure I used Southern style hash browns--they are cubed, not shredded

used mexican style shredded cheese, not Velveeta

did not use the onion either

I added a cup or so of water also--you can do this to taste and to your desired consistency--I wanted it thick and robust but you might like it a little more liquidy?  Is that a word?  Guess it is now!

and came up with a delicious soup--I have two crock pots simmering right now--one for her and our family and one for the guys at Renewal Ranch.  (I keep the history blog for the Ranch and you can see an awesome post about Kyle getting baptized in the snake infested pond --I am not joking--poisonous ones at that-- out behind the bunkhouse--he has a lot of faith--smile).

How do I know it was good--well, I microwaved me a bowl and had it for lunch--yum!!  I served it to myself with a dollop of sour cream and some real bacon bits.

I decided to do one of the things I love most (besides eating) and try to take some decent food pics of this bowl of soup.  Let me just tell you, when you see glorious pictures of food on the internet and in magazines, do not take those pictures for granted.  It is not easy taking good pictures of food.

I took a bowl of soup, strawberries, sour cream and bacon bits back to my art studio where the lighting is somewhat better than my kitchen--tried to set up a simple still life using sheets of watercolor paper for tablecloth and background, used my reflector that I just bought the other day (I think I'm gonna love it if I ever learn how to use it properly) and shot with three different cameras on many different settings.

These pics were the best I could do and they were edited in IPhoto.  I can't wait to try some of them with Kim Klassen's textures.  Hopefully that will transform an okay picture to an awesome one.  We'll see!

Hope your weekend is blessed!

Oh, btw, the platter, bowl and silver belonged to my MIL which makes this still life more special to me.

UPDATE:  Just had another bowl--after this simmered for several hours it was to die for--already decided, next time I make it (and it will be soon) I'm going to put teensy baby carrots and canned chicken breast (I get it at Sam's Wholesale Club and it is delicious) in it.

Now just tell me, what in the world would I have done today without parentheses??  :D