In the June 29 issue of Boise Weekly, you’ll see the results of three hectic weekend nights I spent in the kitchens of several of Boise’s biggest, busiest restaurants documenting the drama that takes place, unseen, beyond a dining room’s door.
The project reminded me of shooting sports, with all its fast action, split-second timing, intense physicality and high emotion—but on a smaller playing field full of hard objects, sharp corners and fire. To keep from getting slammed by chefs, waiters and other back-of-the-house workers, I snuck between stoves and coolers or wedged myself into dark corners. Sometimes, I’d brave the line, trying to do a little synchronized dance as I snapped my shutter inches from a knife-wielding chef.
Several thousand photographs later, suffering nary a wound nor insult, I came away from those kitchens with tremendous new respect for the people who work there and the often heroic effort they make to get a restaurant meal on a plate.