Welcome to inChefs’ Food Blogging Series, our little hub of online information and insight from bloggers in the culinary world. Bayu Amus, a User Experiencer Designer as well as a Food Blogger, joins us from Bali, Indonesia to share his journey into food blogging. Bayu’s love for story telling through words and pictures resulted in the creation of several blogs, scored him scriptwriter gigs for some Indonesian TV sitcoms, and his contribution of food articles to travel many magazines.
Food Blog Journey: Bayu Amus of Epicurina blog
Q. What is the name and URL of your blog?
A. Epicurina – http://blog.epicurina.com
Q. What inspired you to be a food blogger?
A. To promote the beauty of Indonesian food, and good food in Indonesia to the world. It breaks my heart to learn that Indonesian food isn’t really known worldwide, despite it has everything it needs to compete in the global scale.
Q. Who is your culinary icon, and why?
A. My mom, she’s the one that introduced me to good foods, and how to appreciate them.
Q. What is your favorite part of being a food blogger?
A. Meeting new people in the food business, and discovering new eating experience.
Q. What, if any, was the biggest challenge to becoming a food blogger? How did you overcome it?
A. In my journey I have meet a lot of foodies with excellent taste and assessment ability, however they don’t have the passion to write hence they don’t blogs. So I guess writing is one major challenge. As with myself though, it’s time and energy: there’s usually less time and spirit left to write after a hard time at work, but the longer you wait to write, you forget things. I overcome those challenges by developing a habit of making quick notes on my Instagram posts, which usually are posted only within hours after a visit. These quick notes later served as a skeleton of my blog writing, which I tried to do now once a week at least.
Q. What one word would define your culinary style?
A. A xenovorare – always interested in trying out new kind of foods – somewhere between Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmern.
Q. What’s the most important change you’ve made on your blog in the last year?
A. I redesigned the look of my blog last year: adding a headlines slider, put more Balinese and vacation feel into it, and make the front page shows only teasers of the actual posting, so my users can quickly get a glance on what the posting is about, instead of having to scroll down far to see all the new blog entries I posted.
Q. If you had to choose one kitchen tool you could not live without, what would it be and why?
A. The knife, it’s able to perform very basic food processing tasks like peeling, cutting, chopping, slicing, including opening cans.
Q. What’s the best food photography tip you’ve learned in the past year?
A. Always pay careful attention to the lighting: no matter how expensive your camera is, there’s always a limit to how less light it’s able to capture correctly. That’s why I carried around a mini LED torch to provide my own food illumination, very useful on those dark fine dining scenes.
Q. Which three cities would you like to travel to purely for culinary reasons?
A. Tokyo in Japan, Fez in Morocco, and Mexico City.
Q. How do you spend your time when you are not in the kitchen?
A. On the street, looking for another discovery.
Q. How do you think food blogging will evolve in the years to come?
A. Eventually it will get bloated, now that food blogging is becoming trendy, and the effort of creating good photo shoots and acquiring good blogging platform is becoming cheaper and easier, unlike ten years ago. But those who find a real passion in food blogging will shine through compared with the trend-triggered ones.
Q. What one advice would you give to aspiring food bloggers?
A. Hone your skill on describing flavors in words, and learn basic food photography skills, as usually they’re the things that trigger your readers’ interest in reading more, or try the food themselves.