Hi there! I'm Renee Byrd. Virginia-based photographer, writer and plant-based recipe developer. Obsessed with: avocado toast, eating flowers and putting cashew butter in my lattes. Est. 1989 and still kicking it. Read on for more!
About the Blog
On this blog I write about the things I love: seasonal eating, plant-based cooking, self-care, holistic wellness, yoga, mental health and being a Highly Sensitive Person. In my experience they're all intimately interrelated. Everything I do in this space is about sharing the experiences I've had with food and wellness practices that help me to live a more vibrant, healthful, joyful, pleasurable and balanced life.
For me, food is nourishment for body, mind, heart and soul. It's spiritual and playful. Pleasurable and wholesome. Wild and grounded. Cooking is how I root down into myself -- a daily reminder to be present, take a deep breath, smell the delicious onions frying on the stove.
What You'll Find on This Blog
- Special-diets-friendly vegetarian recipes, most of which are naturally gluten-free or are made with ancient wheat varieties like spelt. 99% of the recipes are also dairy free.
- Conversations about self-care and self-love.
- Lifestyle resources for Highly Sensitive People.
- Journaling prompts (oh how I love me some journaling prompts!).
- Conversations on wellness oriented-topics.
- Advice for creative freelancers (because I am one and you guys ask for this a lot).
- Extra goodies like playlists, printables (coming soon!), event updates and the *NEW* Self Care Sunday Newsletter (sign-up here).
The WFFF Philosophy
- Eat more plants.
- Frolic often.
- Never let your diet rules get in the way of experiencing life.
- Always give weird foods a try.
- Keep food simple, unprocessed, plant-based and homemade most of the time.
- Let your intuition guide you.
- Be compassionate for animals, especially human-animals.
- Everything in moderation, including moderation!
- When in Rome, eat gelato and pizza and pasta.
- Love yo self well.
- Eat as many colorful foods as possible most of the time.
- Eat dark chocolate every day -- for survival, for sanity, for fun.
And Here's a little Bit More About Me
- I have no shame about “foraging” flowers from the neighborhood.
- That's me, with the head wrap and the bell-bottoms in the kitchen on a Friday night -- stirring a pot of vegan spaghetti and meatballs, drinking wine, rocking out to some world beats. Just trying to be Joni Mitchell (who was renowned for her kitchen skills, did you know?).
- Constantly studying cooking technique, herbalism and Ayurveda.
- Every year I plant a big garden full of food and flowers. It's my heart.
- I'm a believer that originality, authenticity and hard-work creates opportunity.
- I will do anything for a laugh. Embarrassing things.
- I think a photo shoot is as much about capturing a feeling as it is a scene/moment.
- I can whip up a dessert out of almost nothing in the cupboard.
- My plants are my pets and, yes, I talk to them.
- I started Will Frolic for Food in 2013.
- I'm a self-taught photographer. I do portraits and events as well as food photography.
- I create all of the photos and content for WFFF in my home kitchen / studio.
- I learned to cook the old fashioned way -- with guts, a willingness to fail, and the guidance of my community (thanks mom!). I've been cooking and baking since I was a pre-teen.
- I live in Charlottesville, Virginia.
- I co-own a coffee and bean-to-bar chocolate company with my husband Logan -- it's called Frolic. We do pop-ups at the Charlottesville Farmers Markets twice a week (Wednesday and Saturday).
- I'm a RYT 300 hour Yoga Teacher and ever-aspiring yogini.
- Self-care is kinda my thing *pours myself a smoothie, sprays rosewater on my face and frolics off into a meadow.*
What kind of camera/lenses do you use?
I use a Canon 5D Mark IV. I primarily use a Sigma 50mm macro f/2.8 or a Canon 50 mm f/1.4.
Where can I buy the herbs / spices / botanicals you talk about?
Will you teach me photography / styling?
You can sign up for my newsletter here to be notified about secret workshops / events on this topic.
Do you have a shop where I can come drink your potions and eat your treats?
There's no brick and mortar shop but you can find me and my husband at the Charlottesville Farmers Market on Saturdays April-October selling his small-batch-roasted coffee, bean-to-bar chocolate and plenty of my experiments. Come say hi!
What's your Self Care Sunday newsletter about?
I send out a newsletter every Sunday packed with the best reads, recommendations, self-care tips and wellness inspiration -- plus an original journaling prompt to inspire self-inquiry and joy. It's basically a club for those of us who want that vibey slow Sunday feeling -- delivered straight into your inbox. Sign up here.
What's a "Highly Sensitive Person"... and am I one?
Highly Sensitive People (HSP) have what's called Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS) -- a survival mechanism characterized by a sensitivity to sensory stimulation. To put it plainly, HSPs take in a lot more information about their environment than the majority of the population. It's thought that HSP's have an evolutionary advantage in that they are highly attuned to their surroundings and can make deeply integrated decisions about how to move forward when faced with problems. HSPs tend to struggle with being overwhelmed in our modern world where sensory stimulation is on over-drive. About 20-30% of the population is HSP. Read more about it here. And take the test to find out if you're HSP here.
Can I come to your yoga classes?
Yes! If you send me an email I can put you on a list to come to my yoga classes for free. Contact me here.
Where are you located?
I'm based out of Charlottesville, Virginia -- one of the most beautiful, livable and food-forward cities in the South -- most famous for being home to UVA and Monticello. It's a funny town, a mix of preppy academics and back-to-lander hippies who came here in the 60's and 70's to raise kids, horses and heirloom vegetables. I like to joke that you can't throw a yoga teacher five feet without hitting a PHD candidate (we have 13+ yoga studios with a little over 46,000 residents... that doesn't even include the "yoga studios" people have in their houses!).