My approach to photographing food is an exploration of a childhood dysfunction that developed into an intense fear of vomiting. Eating is necessary for survival, but when fear gets involved, survival is not enough. The comfort that food provides for most is absent for me; in its place is an emotional black hole. Since our culture bonds over shared meals, when those close to me don’t understand how eating can feel dangerous, I feel isolated.
Photographing food in a designed way allows me to explore these sensations in a controlled environment. By mixing nonfood elements with food and introducing textures and colors not normally found in the same dish, I am able to get up close to my discomfort and communicate it to the world.
All photographs by Jaina Cipriano © 2022