Update 31 December 2017 – I haven’t updated my blog in a long time. I’ve had other priorities taking up my time, and frankly, haven’t had much to write about (or that I think anyone would be interested in reading). I haven’t decided what I will do with this blog, but in the mean time I do post occasionally on my social media accounts, so feel free to follow if you like: TFP on Instagram | TFP on Facebook. If you like cats: TFP Cats on Instagram | TFP Cats on Facebook

I’m Cynthia Chew, Cyn to my friends, also known as TFP, a 44-year-old woman living in Perth, Western Australia. I’m Australian, of Chinese-Malaysian descent.

I started The Food Pornographer blog in 2005. It combines the things I love to do the most: eat, travel, take photographs and write. Although it is named ‘The Food Pornographer’ I never set out to create a food blog and these days am happier blogging on my own terms, rather than according to conventions of ‘food blogging’. I no longer accept invitations/freebies (events, experiences, famils, travel, anything) – here’s my explanation. There is no ‘Work with Me’ page on this site and I do not have a media kit (by choice).

My family migrated to Perth when I was ten years old. I live with Jac, my partner of 20+ years, and our cats, Truffle, Elvis and Ava. We said goodbye to Billy Lee in January 2012, and to Pixel in March 2017.

I like my bacon streaky, my egg yolks gooey and my SPAM fried to crispy. I am obsessed with durian. I have to eat rice or noodles every few days or suffer withdrawal symptoms. I prefer eating to cooking. I like my coffee with soy milk but I love ice cream and cheese. I prefer dark meat chicken to breast. I’m proudly not a food snob and will give most things a go – but I developed a crustacean allergy in my late thirties.

I have worked in the hospitality industry and in a call centre, been a web designer/developer and a university tutor. I have an Honours degree in Creative Writing and a PhD in Literature. Blogging is not my job – I work full-time in a job unrelated to blogging.

My camera

Over the years I’ve had this blog, I’ve used different cameras as my photography has evolved (and I hope improved!). Timeframes below are approximate.

  • Current camera (since December 2013) – Fujifilm X-T1
  • October 2012 to November 2013 – Nikon D600
  • August 2010 to October 2012 – Panasonic Lumix G2
  • August 2007 to August 2010 – Panasonic Lumix TZ3
  • August 2005 to August 2007 – Canon Ixus V (my very first digital camera)

I briefly used a DSLR (Nikon D600 – I wrote about this in Reflections on my photography) and while I loved the image quality, I found it too heavy for carrying around day-to-day as well as for travel (see my travel gear page). After much research and consideration, I chose the Fujifilm X mirrorless system. I now use two Fujifilm X-T1 bodies. I have sold all of my Nikon gear.

My current lenses are:

  • Fujinon 23mm (35mm full frame equivalent) – primarily used for photographing food at the table e.g. in restaurants.
  • Fujinon 18-55mm (27-84mm full frame equivalent) – main lens used when travelling, walking around and photographing markets and events.
  • Fujinon 55-200mm (80-300mm full frame equivalent) – used when a longer lens is required.
  • Fujinon 35mm (50mm equivalent) – I like to use this one in low-light situations where my subject is not too far away and I can walk around (it was especially effective at this Fervor event in 2015). If I’ll be stuck sitting at a dinner table with no opportunity to get up and move around, I’ll stick to the 23mm. 2017 update: the 35mm is currently my everyday lens.

When I started The Food Pornographer blog, the photos I took were mostly of food. These days, food still features prominently, but I enjoy taking photographs of many more subjects.

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