Heather Elder Represents
Reps Journal

Teamwork Enhances Dan Goldberg's Creativity

When someone works well with others, it’s a plus. Fueled by collaboration, Dan Goldberg takes it up a notch, gaining steam by working with talented artists to share ideas, pushing each other forward. Inspired by food stylist María del Mar, this project is a lesson in slowing down and telling a simple story. Together they worked with prop stylist Andrea Kuhn to create an image series of deconstructed salads from the seventies. It was a trip down memory lane for everyone on the team. This trio found such success in the process that it lit the fire of ideas for future projects. Please gather around and take in all that is Seventies Salad. 

What did you learn on this project?

Capturing food brings back emotions and memories. It’s something I always knew but was more profound on this shoot. We shot these salads, with everybody putting in their two cents about which salad had the most memories from childhood. This project reminded me of cooking with my grandma in her kitchen. For this reason, I put the cigarette and the lemon squeezer in one shot. While each of these triggered childhood memories on set, everyone responded with their own once we posted them. 

Illustrations by María del Mar

What was your most memorable moment?

The shrimp salad put a smile on my face. I asked someone to go outside and light a cigarette so I could smell and see the smoke. That, coupled with the salad on set, made me smell my grandma’s kitchen. I also love the seven-layer salad, which is a recipe that came from my Aunt Judy. It was the only thing I wanted to eat at Thanksgiving. This salad was challenging to shoot because peas no longer come frozen in a square. Our food stylist had to freeze peas in a square mold to make the throwback complete.

What would you like people to know about you and your work after viewing this?

Brand images can trigger memories. We can evoke nostalgia with the right team of people — with props, lighting, a different way of shooting, distinct styling, and the unique, warm, soft appearance like Kodachrome film. For this project, imagery brings you back to a simpler time. The salads and stories from each of the three individuals all put their take on the past. 

Follow Dan on Instagram for imagery giving a multi-sensory awareness of the present and past.