Creating a Bite Size Portrait every day

Vela Burke, a graphic illustrator based in Brooklyn, decided to take on #The100DayProject to get over what she calls “analysis paralysis” with her art. “As I was making dinner, something just snapped,” she says. “I basically said ‘that’s it, I’m making a piece of art with these ingredients in front of me right now.’ After that, something opened up.”

Starting in March 2016, Vela took time each day to create “Bite Size Portraits,” which she photographed and posted on her Instagram account @brooklynblueday for 100 consecutive days. She started with a sketchbook, pencils, pens, and her daughter’s watercolors and Gelly Roll pens, then added edible components from a meal, snack or drink that day to make the image pop. “I love cooking for my family, it nourishes them and makes them happy, and I love making art,” she says. “My Bite Size Portraits are a celebration of both.”

Taking on the project even encouraged Vela and her family to step our of their comfort zone when it came to meals. “It forced me out of my natural inclination to eat the same things. I had to become a more adventurous eater. I would have never tried dragon fruit before, and it was delicious! … The produce aisle takes on a whole new glow when the shallots look like shirts, and the dill looks like hair.”

In addition to combining her love of cooking and art, the 100-day challenge totally did the job as far as jumpstarting her creativity. She learned some valuable lessons by holding herself accountable each day. “If you show up everyday, you’ll see results. You don’t have to wait to be inspired. You just have to start, and keep showing up.”

Check out a compilation video of Vela’s absolute favorite portraits from the project below, and follow her on Instagram to stay updated on her current creative ventures.



brooklynbluedayChampagne Mango brooklynbluedayRaspberries & Greek Yogurt. brooklynbluedayJam & Brie Ritz brooklynblueday BiteSizePortraits Strawberry Rhubarb Pie brooklynbluedayCinnamon Honey Roasted Chickpeas