Category: Food Font

The Food Font Thanksgiving Food Font Challenge

The Food Font Thanksgiving Food Font Challenge

Food Font is an interactive art project where people can make alphabets out of food, take pictures of each letter, and later use these and other food alphabets in a fun, free, interactive online design tool.

This year is the second Thanksgiving Food Font challenge for the Food Font project, where you are asked to make a Food Font alphabet our of your favorite Thanksgiving food.

Have you made an alphabet out of food yet?  Make a Thanksgiving alphabet, submit the pictures to the Food Font site, and alphabet  will be edited and loaded into the Food Font tool which is about to go into development later this month.

What kind of Thanksgiving food would make a great Food Font to write with in the Food Font tool?  Want to write something in Turkey?  Pumpkin pie?  Or your own Thanksgiving dinner?

You can print the alphabet checklists, then sit down at the Thanksgiving table or work in the kitchen.  Do it with your family – or by yourself.  Directions, an alphabet checklist, and other information are on the  Make a Food Font Alphabet page on the Food Font  site.

You do not need a lot of supplies – just some white plates or a white surface to work on, a digital camera, and some food.  Why not play and write with food? (and then eat it!)

For more information or if you have questions – send them to info [at} – or use the contact form on the site.

Take the challenge and make a Thanksgiving food alphabet!

Food Font – Make a Food Alphabet Page 

Food Font Project


Roy Choi –Challenging Chefs Do Something Different and Make Food More Accessible

Roy Choi –Challenging Chefs Do Something Different and Make Food More Accessible

I recently heard about the MAD Symposium, an annual gathering of few hundred writers, chefs, scientists, historians and fermentation activists in Copenhagen which is dedicated to exploring and sharing new and forgotten food knowledge.   The third MAD, which took place on August 25-26th 2013, was dedicated to the topic of “guts.” With the theme, the organizers wanted to invoke a sense of courage and urgency in the speakers, enabling chefs and attendees to reflect on the stories and ideas that no one usually dares or gets an opportunity to tell, both literal and metaphorical. MAD was organized by chef René Redzepi and was co-curated by Momofuku chef and restaurateur David Chang and food magazine Lucky Peach.

At MAD, chefs from around the world gather and discuss the challenges and responsibilities that go beyond cooking.  Talks and discussions center on new questions to ask, and how to become more imaginative and inquisitive. One talk by Roy Choi, a chef who revolutionized food truck culture with his food trucks in L.A., was recently posted on MAD’s blog and has been getting lots of mentions on food and culture blogs.

Back in 2008, Choi and his partners, Mark Manguera and Caroline Shin-Manguera, launched a fleet of Korean-Mexican taco trucks, known as Kogi BBQ.   In his talk Choi talked about his restaurant practice, and challenged chefs to address the fact that they are mostly much only feeding privileged communities.

Choi started by talking about the 5 million people in California are hungry.  Where he lives, 65% of children live in poverty.  An additional 17% live in extreme poverty.  He went on to share stasistics about how in his neighborhood where he lives and works, low academic performance, unemployment, single parent homes are the norm, and up to 90% of residents have witnessed or been involved with violence.

He continued on to talk about food and about the unseen hunger crisis in Los Angeles.

“With so many paved roads, the nice weather, restaurants, farmer markets – it is hard to see that in many parts of the city food is supplied by liquor stores, and there are no chef-driven restaurants.  There are few supermarkets and little or no organics.  The stores that do exist have second rate or end of life produce. The restaurants that do exist are fast food.

In life, we all have an ability to make a choice.  Why can’t all these residents just drive over to the next town to get to Whole Foods and shop?  It is the fundamental belief that we all think we have these equal choices, and accessibility to have a great meal is a fallacy.  If all you see growing up is junk food processed meat, and fast food (and no vegetables and fruits), this becomes your normal food and way of eating.

Why am I saying this at a food conference with the best chefs in the world?  I believe that chefs can do anything.  We are not the richest people, but what we do and say, people follow.  We revel what makes up the super duper food world.  We are all connected of the food world, but what if there is a whole population of people right under your nose who can not eat?

We have the internet, and hyper awareness.  Things can be communicated quickly.  The food world has never been more active.  But has it changed?  Are we feeding the people who can’t afford it?  The audience has gotten younger.  We talk about food all the time more than ever.

Our prison systems have terrible food, and these are places to rehabilitate others. In 6th generations from now, the children are not even born yet will have the same division that exists.

Do we have the guts to do something different?    What if every chef also balanced that by making food more accessible? And not just feeding the hood, but also challenging fast food. Imagine every chef in every city was doing their restaurant but also creating a kiosk in a working-class neighborhood, working with the purveyors to bring the prices down—so, instead of fast food, there would be chef-driven fast food.”

Choi worked to create a cafe at Jefferson High School in L.A., selling fruit cups and fresh drinks.  Today the project has become a cafe, and he sees it as a start to making change in his neighborhood.   You can watch his talk on the MAD blog here.


Links and Image Sources:

Roy Choi MAD Talk

Roy Choi –Kogi BBQ

Roy Choi’s Upcoming Book – L.A. Son: My Life, My City, My Food




Food Font is a Member of the Green Plus Durham Food System Consortium and Receives a Burt’s Bees Scholarship

Food Font is a Member of the Green Plus Durham Food System Consortium and Receives a Burt’s Bees Scholarship

Food Font is happy to have a home in Durham!  We are excited to be selected as a member of the Green Plus Durham Food System Consortium (DFSC), which has been created by the North Carolina Triangle-based Institute for Sustainable Development (ISD) and the  Burt’s Bees Greater Good Foundation. The DFSC is comprised of local, food-centric businesses and nonprofits who share best practices and collaborate to strengthen the area’s food system and help protect the environment.

Food Font is one of the 20 organizations that have been selected to be part of the consortium.  As a member of Green Plus, we will be working with the ISD to improve the triple bottom line (people, planet, profit) of Food Font.  We will be working with a mentor in order to better understand how our actions can protect our local environment.

Some things I am looking forward to developing and getting support with are developing a sustainability plan with key objectives, selecting and presenting some environmentally friendly products to use for the project, and committing to engaging the Food Font community as it grows with issue of environment and social/community impact.

As part of the DFSC, we will participate in periodic group conversations and meet other Durham based small businesses and non-profits that grow, distribute, prepare food or raise awareness of food system issues.  Some of the other members are Cocao and Cinnamon, a local coffee shop, and Sweet Beet City Farm, a urban farm in Durham.

Thanks to the Institute for Sustainable Development, Green Plus and The Burt’s Bees Greater Good Foundation for giving us an opportunity to be part of this new consortium!


Image Source:



Green Plus – Burt’s Bees + Green Plus Food System Consortium in Durham


Food Font – Element Adjust Feature Added to Design

Food Font – Element Adjust Feature Added to Design

So Food Font had settled in here in Durham, NC, and the work of moving and transition has slowed down a bit, which means that the development of the Food Font interactive tool has picked up.  I am working hard to write out the detailed documents that describe and visualize the tool that are needed to give the programmer who will build the tool.

This Sunday, I am going to check out Splat Space, also called Durham’s Hackerspace.  I am attending the Software Project Night, and bringing my draft, images of the design in progress, and some questions to the event.  Splat Space is a work, play, and hobby space where people with common interests, primarily in technology, can meet to socialize and collaborate.

I am excited to take a break from development, and get some input on the design and design documents.  Some of the questions I am getting input on include some feasibility of functions, standards, and other techie information.

One new feature that has been added to the Food Font Interactive Tool design is an element adjust feature which will allow you to select a text object and adjust its opacity, add shadows, and also stack objects using send to front/back  settings.

If you want to read more about Splat Space, you can check it out their website at 


Food Font and Kbaumlier Have Relocated to North Carolina

Food Font and Kbaumlier Have Relocated to North Carolina

What fits into a box and an orange tube, and moved from Cleveland, OH to Durham, NC?  Food Font!  Well, sort of. The project is bigger than two boxes, but the materials used for live events (minus the table and tent) are currently packed in one box and a tube.

Kristen Baumlier, the founder of Food Font has relocated to the Chapel Hill/Durham/Raleigh area in North Carolina.  In the past few monthes lots of packing, cleaning, and moving has been in the works, but we made it!

Soon some summer Food Font events will be scheduled.  The development of the Food Font tool is continuing.   Currently the mechanics and design document is being authored, which is a detailed written document with screen shots and plans which is used by the programmer to build the tool.

Lately there has been some emails coming in to the Food Font site asking about when the tool will be available.  Thanks everyone for writing in. Official word is that the tool is planned to be up and working later this Summer!

In the meantime, why  not work on making some food alphabets?  Use the checklist and directions to get started!