A fusion of food, travel and photography.

Posts tagged “BradBellPhoto

An Oasis in the Desert – Discovering Amangiri


Miriam Webster defines an oasis as a “fertile or green area in an arid region (as a desert); something that provides refuge, relief, or pleasant contrast.” Pleasant contrast is how I would describe the design and architecture of a new addition to the ultra luxury hotel chain Aman. Small, secluded and designed for personal pampering, Aman Resorts delight discriminating travelers who are looking to escape.

Entrance Hall at Amangiri

Having experienced their flagship property, Amanpuri in Phuket, Thailand a few years ago, I knew the resort in the middle of the Utah desert would indeed be an oasis. That is, if we could find the hotel. (more…)


Airport Run and Haute Dogs


Top Chef contestant Richard Blais has opened his third restaurant in Atlanta. The first two are both called FLIP and are both gourmet burger boutiques. His newest restaurant is called HD1 and serves gourmet “Haute Dogs.”

Louisiana Lobster Dog

We needed to make a dry-run to the rental car center at Hartsfield International Airport to be sure driving instructions were correct for several folk who are coming to town this week.  On the way back (more…)


What Is My Real Photography Job?


Ever since I started this blog several months ago, I have occasionally been asked what kind of photography I do professionally. Considering how varied some of that work is, I thought I would take this opportunity to show you some of the photos I recently shot on assignments.

Greystone Properties, one of the largest management companies in the U.S., asked me to shoot (more…)


Travel to Temples


No trip to Asia would be complete without visiting some of the local temples. Any trip to a foreign land should include experiencing the local culture and Southeast Asia has plenty (more…)


Remember Love?


Do you remember your first love? How about your second? Remember how you would lie in bed thinking about what exciting adventure tomorrow would bring? How you couldn’t wait to see that person again. It didn’t even matter how you spent your time with each other. It was the chemistry and the magical feeling you had, just being with that special someone.

Lanterns in Hoi An, Vietnam

Love doesn’t apply only to people. Most people love their pets. Some people love to sing. Others love (more…)


Where the Stars Eat


As I mentioned in an earlier post, I was recently asked to accompany a group of corporate executives to New York where they would ring the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange. I was documenting the trip and helping to make it as much fun as possible.

It was quite an amazing experience being on the floor of the Stock Exchange. The history, energy, and hundreds of millions of dollars that are made and lost every day was a thrilling experience for me. I was not allowed to use flash (more…)


Southwestern Fare in the Southeast


On a steamy August Saturday night in Atlanta, what would be better than some spicy Southwestern food to help counteract the dog days of summer? On this evening we decided to pay a visit to Nava, one of the Buckhead Life Group restaurants. I was a little suspect of how one could make a liquid cocktail described as a Jalapeno Margarita taste spicy. Believe me, someone figured it out. So far we were off to a great start that evening.

Those of you who read my blog regularly know that I’m a sucker for lobster. If it’s on the menu, it’s on my table. That evening it arrived in the form of an appetizer. (more…)


Amazing Vegetable Details in Vietnam


One of my first impressions of the people of Vietnam was that they were mostly very hard working people who often make little money yet remain cheerful and friendly. They seem happy to take on tasks that Westerners would typically scoff at. Talent, ingenuity and a little love were evident in many of the details I saw while visiting their country.

The edible garnishes were simply awesome! Keep in mind that each and every dish served at this restaurant in Hoi An was accompanied by (more…)


Faces of Asia


On a recent photo tour of Bangkok and Vietnam, I decided to spend some time capturing the beauty of the area through the faces of its inhabitants. I found the people to be very friendly and accommodating.

Having only spent two weeks in Southeast Asia, I had little time to get to know any single person but generally speaking the people seemed to be happy and hard working. (more…)


Hot Time in The City


When the temperature reaches 104 in Times Square and the sidewalks measure 147 degrees of heat radiating up in your face, outdoors is really not the place to be. On a recent trip to New York City, the heat was so intense that any respite from it was indeed welcome. Unfortunately all too many of the taxis in NYC don’t exactly offer much in the way of air conditioning.

Times Square

The main focus for this trip was shooting photos of the group I was accompanying as they rang the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange. Most of the three day program was indoors so the temperature (more…)


Travel Provides The Best Education


Traveling the world provides us with educational experiences that are quite simply impossible to gain from any other venue, classroom or university. Our senses absorb the sights, sounds, tastes and smells.

We touch and feel things we have never experienced before. We interact with people in ways that are new to us. (more…)


Local Transportation in Vietnam


Transportation in Southeast Asia is just a bit different then most other places in the world. The average income is comparatively low and paved streets are often few and far between. Stretching the dollar has been raised to an art form in Asia so the least expensive means of getting from point A to point B is the norm.

Transport in Vietnam

Two wheeled vehicles are by far the most popular form of transportation. (more…)


Floating Markets in Vietnam


The day begins very early on the Mekong Delta in South Vietnam. Farmers from the region awake before dawn to load their boats with the fruit and vegetables they harvested the day before. Every morning these boats meet to form some of the world’s largest floating markets. 
 

Headed to market

 
Local residents, as well as restaurants and stores, pull their boats up beside the anchored market boats and purchase the day’s produce that will become tonight’s dinner.
 

Heat and Steam in the Big Easy


Walking the cobblestone streets of the French Quarter, at any time of year, is a step back to a simpler time. Horse drawn carriages, wrought iron balconies and the waft of Creole cooking in the air conjures up images of lamp lighters and jazz musicians playing brass in the streets. During the summer, New Orleans is hot, humid and downright sticky. High ceilings and open windows were the air conditioning of generations past.

New Orleans Church Turret

Today’s NOLA, as it’s called, (New Orleans, LA) is a hybrid of ancient French Quarter architecture still intact, Louisiana culture and cutting edge gastronomy. Several award winning chefs and published cookbook authors call New Orleans home, and serve up amazing food (more…)


Creating Your Own Fireworks


As a photographer, the Fourth of July usually presents a once-a-year photo opportunity for shots of fireworks bursting in the nighttime sky. Depending upon where I have traveled to each year, there might be an iconic structure in the foreground or I’ll catch the fireworks reflected in a glass building. As is true with any outdoor photography, Mother Nature always plays a part and this year she has chosen to literally rain on our parade.

Since I am at home in Atlanta for Independence Day this year, and since my idea of a fine Fourth of July doesn’t involve a hundred thousand people who are soaking wet (me being one of them), I’ve decided to stay at home and prepare my own fireworks in the kitchen. (more…)


You Can’t Go Home Again


I returned to my hometown of Toledo, Ohio, to attend my Dad’s funeral this week and was saddened not only by the event, but also by the fact that my hometown has become a picture of an aging, depressed and rusting Midwestern city. There has been very little growth, very few new buildings and tons of old buildings that are now abandoned.
 

Downtown Toledo's rverfront

An attempt has been made to breathe new life into the downtown area with the construction of a new baseball stadium, convention center, and a new bridge across the Maumee River. I was, however, able to seek some solace in the food. (more…)


Chelsea Dresses Up


It is so refreshing to see a city as vibrant and full of life as New York renew itself and remain the center of the universe from so many perspectives. The restaurants are cutting edge, technology is invented and some of the most creative minds in the world live there. As the world’s population increases and demographics shift, New York has done a wonderful job of going with the flow, instead of trying to swim up stream like so many other cities do.

Chelsea from The Hudson river with the Empire State Building in the background

Chelsea and the Meat Packing District are prime examples. It wasn’t long ago that Chelsea was anything but (more…)


Lunch at Carnegie Deli


It was lunch time in The City and the rush was on for a seat in the deli. This may not have been the most attractive presentation of any meal I have eaten, but it was my first time at Carnegie Deli and I was jumping in with both feet. A classic Reuben sandwich. Two pieces of rye bread, what had to have been nearly an entire pound of corned beef, sauerkraut and plenty of Swiss cheese melted over the top with Russian dressing on the side. I had always heard that the sandwiches are large enough to split, but I had no idea this single sandwich, served open face, would cover an entire dinner plate.

A Reuben at Carnegie Deli

The corned been was so tender you could cut it with a fork. The flavors were amazing. Now I know what all the fuss (more…)


Making Lemonade from Lemons


One of the problems with being a photographer and traveling to a specific location with a  particular shot in mind is that you either have to do a lot of homework to insure that the scene you shoot will be what you want it to be, or play a little Russian roulette. I was in NYC in February for just one night and I wanted to shoot the downtown Manhattan skyline from Brooklyn, shooting across the East River with the Brooklyn Bridge in the frame. Sadly, on the one night I was in town, it rained.

Times Square

I was unexpectedly back in New York again a few weeks ago. Ah ha! Another chance for that shot. I was staying in a downtown hotel which would be close by, the weather was supposed to be perfect, but something (more…)


The Best Little Steak House in Florida


I typically don’t recommend restaurants. Too many times I have returned to a restaurant where I had a fantastic meal in an effort to duplicate the experience, only to be disappointed with the second visit. Everyone’s restaurant expectations are different. However, my visit to Berns Steak House in Tampa, went way beyond even my level of expectation, and those who know me know that my standards are extremely high.

Bern's Steak House Lobby

Bern’s has absolutely no curb appeal, looking like an old warehouse on drive-up. One step through the doors (more…)