Fiona’s Food Illustrated. 26 November 2014 The Corner Shop’s ‘artist in residence’ Fiona Jarrett shares her top 3 foods in words and pictures

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I love everything about food, feeding others and being fed.  Food is so beyond function it is magic in my eyes.  The smell, colour and the way it makes me feel is sometimes beyond comprehension and articulation.   So I have therefore decided to draw and paint my way through my dinners to express my culinary cheer.

Before we start, here are some facts:

Age: 27
Job: Full time (ie. not as many hours in the kitchen as would like)
Likes: Flavours of Italy, lemon, fresh bread, chocolate, cheese, every spice under the sun, sweet creamy things, unami flavours, all kinds of soup, crispy textures, anything seasonal, slow cooked foods, coffee,  perfectly ripe cherries. There is really too much to list!
Dislikes: Anything that is (combined) too creamy and eggy and cheesy and fishy.  Jarrett’s have never really liked glacé fruit either.


The humble egg custard
A little pastry cup filled with a set custard, which has just the perfect glutinous wobble.  I know many of you will disagree, but in my eyes egg custards taste better shop-bought than homemade.  It is hard to put my finger on why, but I think it is something to do with the delicately soft and crumbly pastry.  And the fact that you can 100% rely on it to make you feel happy.  Eating one of these is like giving your tummy a hug.



 

Fish and chips
Crispy, fried, mushy, hot, salty with a hint of sour from tartar sauce – what’s not to like?  I painted this plate whilst in Brighton on a jolly hen do.  I have always wanted a painted plate with my favourite dish on and it sums up my childhood memories of fish and chips by the sea on a hot summers day.  Coming from Portsmouth and being a gal from the coast, there are two foods which have to be eaten after a dip in the sea: a cup of tea and a Mars bar or fish and chips.  This is my first try at painting onto ceramic, and despite a few issues with paint pencils I am very happy with the result.  Plan for my next painted plate?  Risotto or spaghetti.  I like a challenge.




 

Watermelon
This watermelon reminds me of the bright food markets in Florence, which are bustling with life and smells and colour.  Walking around the vast space takes me on a rollercoaster of emotions: awe of the perfectly made fresh mini tortellinis, horror at the tripe stall, excitement at the espresso and prosecco bar and pure joy at the fruit stalls. Walking through Mercato Centrale sends ideas for recipes racing through my head.  Whether it is a piece of mackerel with some cavolo nero or some fresh ragu with spinach pasta, my taste buds are on fire.  It was the month of July when I drew this watermelon, which I had picked out with thirst quenching excitement.  Obviously as soon as I finished the drawing I ate it all in an instant.  Who wouldn’t?



 

Fiona Jarrett
Fiona creates a seasonal picture in chalk each month for our third floor meeting room. Have a look next time you visit


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