Hey there! Welcome to the next post of our latest Q & A series at Vida Vegan Headquarters. These special interviews give a glimpse into our past alumni’s upcoming projects, summer shenanigans and reveal what they really learned at VVC2013. They’re sharing which class sticks out in their minds so many months later, and just what they’d like to see more and less of in vegan blogging, a question that’s always on our minds.
We’re now joined by the adorably sassy Ashlee Piper, author of the “compassionate fare and cunning vegan style” blog, The Little Foxes, and official Vegucator around town. Let’s see what she had to say about her first foray into the land of Vida Vegan Con…
Why Ashlee, just what have you been up to this summer?
Why did you decide to attend Vida Vegan Con II?
Because a gathering of vegan bloggers in a town that is a vegan mecca sounds like, and actually is, heaven.
Looking back, what was the most memorable class?
I loved Fran Costigan’s class on doing quality food demonstrations and workshops. I love her approach and warm vibe, and I learned so much. I also loved Hannah Kaminsky’s class on food styling! Gotta get an eye-dropper and mister, stat!
How has your blog [www.thelilfoxes.com] changed since the three-day conference?
I’ve become more dedicated to it, diligent in posting, and more collaborative. VVC gave me the opportunity to connect with other marvelous bloggers and I love the sense of community. I’ve also become more proud of my blog and bolder about advertising, promoting, monetizing, and growing it.
Blogging is totally a real career and I appreciate VVC for spotlighting that!
How did VVC2013 affect your culinary style and home cooking?
I am a much more dedicated and careful recipe tester now. I also take care to, with my limited camera phone resources, take better pictures of my meals. I’ve also found that simpler is better. Sometimes, as food bloggers, we get more caught up in impressing one another with molecular gastronomy and complicated ingredients and techniques than creating recipes that are attractive to people interested in making good vegan food. VVC helped me to focus on creating recipes that are fun, but approachable.
Who were you really excited to meet?
Any nice surprises you’d like to share? Special memories of VVC2013?
Dancing to Melisser’s grooves, eating my weight in food, late-night karaoke with cool peeps, and MY GOD, all of the vendors and food at the conference. That swag bag ain’t no joke. Oh, and I loved the Vegan Game Show.
So, have you started reading any new blogs?
Heck yes. So many that I cannot keep up.
What would you like to see more or less of in (vegan) blogging?
More video blogs. I love ‘em and want to start doing more myself. I find text blogs to be amazing, but sometimes (especially mine), all that text can be very labor intensive and tough to read.
What would you like to see the organizers incorporate into the next VVC?
Maybe a guided networking reception? I’m very outgoing, so meeting people isn’t a problem for me, but I noticed that other folks are very shy and not ready to self-promote. It might be cool to have a guided networking workshop or something where people can talk about their blogs, goals, and whatever they might need improvement or assistance with. (Noted! We’ve got some creative ice breakers up our sleeves…)
What other vegan events put together by VVHQ would you like to attend?
(One more note: We‘ll keep that in mind and will certainly be there at some point!)
Lastly, what was your favorite meal in Portland, outside of the conference?