Recently married and with a beautiful vegan daughter; life is currently very good indeed. If happiness is a journey rather than a destination then I'm currently well ahead of where I could hope to be in life.
My job involves lots of travel - up to 1000 miles a week in the UK + regular trips to Europe and North America (10 in the past year). I'm generally in London once a week but spend the majority of my time either at home or driving through stunning countryside (Cotswolds, Downs, New Forest etc).
We live together in an 1860s conservation area property in a small market town that I bought and fully renovated between 2007 and 2010 - a short walk from several parks, castle, town centre and open countryside beyond. Decor and furnishing ranges from 1860s (sash windows, stone/wood floors, cornicing, chandeliers) to 1960s (Eames, Saarinen, Klint, Beautility) - with Home Automation (iPad/iPhone controlled lighting, heating, temperature monitoring, distributed AV) throughout.
The kitchen's the largest room and completely vegan - I knocked two rooms together and started from scratch (new cabinets, worktops, american fridge, range cooker etc). We've a dedicated home cinema - 120" screen, 3D HD projector, black walls/carpet/ceiling, surround speakers and a huge double chambered cellar waiting to be converted.
Food and I have a very healthy relationship. I've been vegan for 12 years, eat for pleasure and have regular access to some of the world's best vegetarian cafes and restaurants. If I did more exercise I'd be slim - I'm genuinely impressed however that I'm only slightly overweight given the amount I eat!
Once I'd learn't of the ethics behind it, veganism was an obvious choice. Cooking is so much more fun and rewarding when you've the opportunity to develop new techniques and recipes, rather than simply rehashing that which has been done for generations before. A vegan diet is certainly restrictive to a degree, but food professionals and 'foodies' who claim that it's devoid of massive opportunity for new recipe/texture/flavour development are in my opinion incompetant and really need to get out more!
I created this blog to share the recipes I create and to document what's available in the UK - not just in London. Honesty is the best approach in life - though I want to premote all that's vegan and help businesses to thrive, I'm not afraid to say something's crap (in my opinion) if I think it is. There's nothing more mindnumbing than a blog where everything's amazing - especially products/services offered by personal friends of the author. Equally I don't post recipes that don't work or that I've pilfered and not creditted - where's the fun in that?
My standard setup for food shots at home is an EOS 5D3, 24-70mm 2.8L, Manfrotto 055PROB and 808RC4. I previously used a 7D and shots prior to Jan 2012 were taken with an EOS 350D and 50mm 1.8 (same tripod). I've a 3 head studio lighting setup but generally use natural light, strip lights and reflectors for food (occasionally a 580EXII). I generally don't lug SLRs to restaurants - most pictures in reviews are taken with a Panasonic GF3 + 20mm 1.7 or iPhone.
I don't do boredom; my many hobbies range from introvert/geeky to extrovert/outdoorsy. I enjoy meeting people and have friends throughout the country (a remnant of university and living in 9 counties so far). New ones are always welcome :)
Amazing vegan venue in Leeds
3 hours ago