William Rugen Photographed Everything He Consumed for a Year

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All images by William Rugen. Used with permission

Food photography is something all of us have dabbled in at least once but could you imagine taking a photo of every meal you had for a year? William Rugen has and in his Consumed photo series you can see a visual record of his gastronomic adventures from 2010. It’s a lovely, colorful collage of tasty morsels from the diner breakfast to a sushi lunch, late night pizza, and everything in between.

William began his Consumed photo series looking for a yearlong photo project that would require him to carry a camera with him at all times. “For me, the more I shoot, the more I see,” he quipped.

Looking to his previous work, William would often take photos of his meals and hotel room to stay in a photographic groove. It was a trick he picked up in 2008, when he was on the road taking snapshots of America after nearly 200 years of manifest destiny (otherwise known as the westward expansion of the United States) for another project called Western Dioramas.

With the idea in hand, William began carrying a Canon G11 in his pocket everywhere. “I only used the on-camera flash, usually with a rear curtain sync and used it on almost all the photos as a way to give them a bit of pop,” he explained. Click past the break to hear the rest of William’s story and seen more food pictures.

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“The look of the photos evolved a bit from the first weeks once I started seeing certain images I really liked and trying to move that look forward,” William expounded. “It was also a challenge to repeatedly shoot certain things (cookies, fruit, and yogurt to name a couple) and try not to repeat myself too often.”

William says he never intended the project to create a message or theme surrounding his food photos. “It really was more of a diary, and a personal dare, to do this,” William said. “If folks want to take away something from it, that was fine, but the project had fairly neutral intentions.”

Over the course the year and many little bites throughout each day William said he took almost 2,200 images. “I am also pretty proud I only forgot to take pictures of 13 things during the year,” he quipped.

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Whittling it down to the 110 pictures you see in the Consumed photo series took an almost equally long time key wording every image on a Word Press site. The website has since been take down due to problems with bots and crawlers. But in the future William said he would like to relaunch the webpage, so he can show off every image took for Consumed.

“And in case anyone is wondering I am fairly thin and healthy,” William joked.

You can check out more of William’s work on his website, Tumblr, and Flickr. You can also follow him on Instagram or Like his work on Facebook.

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Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee is a freelance journalist and photographer based in Brooklyn.