Tag Archives: who rules the world



Now to be honest, AJ is someone I have been admiring on instagram for a while. She is honest and transparent in her posts; she goes deep when sharing her inner musings. Her personal style comes across in her photography and writing and it transcends faith, introspection, and authentic glee for life and community!

AJ is originally from Calgary, but moved to Toronto in the last year to pursue her dreams & study culinary, food styling and photography. This month’s Women’s day blog series has been mostly Q&A’s so to switch it up, I asked her to share a little insight about her journey since moving to Toronto.


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We chose to feature AJ because of her incredible eye for photographs. Too often I read her creative projects, like #40conversations project, and they articulate thoughts that resonate so well, I can only imagine that they would be point of reflection for many of our readers.

Just like…

A photo posted by Alexa Fernando (@ajfernando) on Mar 9, 2015 at 1:56pm PDT

“Okay, I’ll show you what I mean. On one end is what we know and on another end is what we don’t know. In the middle there’s this grey area. That’s where ideas come from and where you’ll find the building blocks required for innovation.” – Omar, MD/PhD, Day 17 Have you ever been in those situations where someone’s explaining something and you’re nodding your head in agreement but you actually don’t get it because it’s nowhere near your field? Next time that happens, don’t be afraid to admit your ignorance and just ask. Omar is in the business of text mining and to help me understand better he grabs a sheet of napkin and draws on it while explaining his point. It was a nice gesture because as a creative, having that visual was all I needed to get it. People are willing to put an extra effort, sharing what they know, as long as you are willing to learn as well. So meet them halfway! There is that grey area after all.


“If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” Since I missed a conversation on Day 19, thought I’d share another one from a different day. I saw this quote scribbled on Aya’s notebook and started our conversation by reading it out loud to her. It really resonated with me cause although I had just started my project (I was on Day 5) I knew already that it would be something that I would want to do for the rest of my life. Those life/inspirational quotes you post may get redundant to some but don’t let that hold you back from sharing. The little things you do matter. Somewhere out there it might just be that push that someone needs in their day or that simple reminder that he/she is doing okay. #40conversationsproject #lessonsfrompeople To coincide with this post, I’ve left some prints with handwritten quotes at @650cafe. Just say hi to Stef (maybe start a conversation with him!) and mention my name/instagram and he’ll let you choose from the set.


“I think one of the biggest realizations I’ve had since moving to Toronto is that the world does not revolve around me. There are far greater things at work and if I want to make a difference especially in a city like Toronto then I have to stand on my own feet and make it happen. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that I should stand out—I only need to stand up. After all, I am just a [small] piece of the entire picture. We all have a part to play and who I am as an individual is made up of all the people around me. Whether we know each other or not, I’ve learned that each person that I encounter has a significant role and influence in my life: I am because you are.” – ALEXA


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Thanks for reading, are you liking the series guys? If you enjoyed this please comment below or share it! Do let us know if you are liking what you see.

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Jo is a freelance food, travel, and lifestyle photographer. She takes us on journeys to exotic places and tells compelling stories through her photographs at ‘CandidsbyJo’.

We met a year ago at the Food Bloggers Connect conference in London.  I watched her stealthily capture moments throughout the weekend One particular thing stood out; her ability to warm up to anyone and engage them. Jo has a bubbly, warm, and up-beat personality.

We chose to feature Jo not only because her photos are damn-nice, but we can identify with her strength.  It’s exciting, crazy, and breath-taking to move across the pond, re-acculturate, and find your feet while chasing your dreams.  As part of her feature, she’s given us a taste of her travels at a cheese producer in Portugal.



Where are you from originally and what is your educational background?

I grew up in Boston also I got my undergrad and post grad degrees in Communications & Business there.

Why London, if you weren’t in London where would you be?

I was in a three year long distance relationship with a Brit and realized one of us has to cross the pond. I made the leap and am really glad I did! if I weren’t in London I’d love to work in New Zealand for a year.

How did you transition into food & travel photography?

I started a personal project in 2012 where I took a photo each day for a whole year. My end goal was improve my photography but the project also led me down an unexpected path towards specifically food & travel. I haven’t looked back since!

What have been a few things that you can attribute your growth in the industry to; is it practice, networks, training, assisting?

Practice is definitely key, especially for people like me who learn through trial and error. Once I started shooting often enough I began to pay attention to light and how to work with it for a style specific to me. Networking in person and on social media has been helpful in raising awareness of my work too.

How has your creativity evolved?

Once I started becoming comfortable with my style (which took a long time) it was really easy to expand from there. I gradually evolved from beautiful bright food photos to ones that incorporates a darker tone and shadows.

What can you suggest to empower other women out there?

As women, we are often the ones who hold ourselves back.  I think it’s necessary to recognise that pattern when it happens and push through it. It’s helpful to have a good support system both personally and professionally.

You say you know the secret of making a mean Old Fashioned?

Muddle really well! 🙂

Last one, what’s your favourite place to eat in London? (you can give us five, it’s hard to pick)

My list is continually changing since there are so many wonderful options in London! I’m a big fan of Restaurant Story, Duck & Waffle, Kanada-ya, Sushi Tetsu and Dishoom. They have all been consistently wonderful.


Thanks for reading, If you enjoyed this please comment below or share it! Sharing is caring.

Queijo-Serra-da-Estrela-cheese-production-photo-3 Queijo-Serra-da-Estrela-cheese-photo

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Calgary, Dublin

WOMEN’S FEATURE – That Food Cray’s Nicole Fung, Hong Kong

Nicole has taken the Hong Kong food blog scene by storm, stole their hearts with ease, and looks amazing doing it.


Since starting the exceptionally popular “That Food Cray!!!”, she has shared her love of food with us, tantalising us with food-porn-worthy photography and her gangster-chic voice that is unique and real.  We recently caught up with her in Hong Kong and she was so sweet!


Nicole your writing is authentic – it’s strong, fun, but feminine.
We chose to feature Nicole first as her new project, MISSBISH encourages and empowers women who are leading their own industries – it is a gorgeous content-rich website with a place to shop to your hearts delight.
 – enjoy! 

source: missbish.com

“MISSBISH is essentially a community of beautiful women who are fearless, creative and empowering.”

Where are you from originally and what is your educational background?

I was born and raised in Calgary, Canada. I studied at the University of Alberta for a couple years, then finished my Bachelor of Commerce Degree at the University of Calgary majoring in accounting.

How did you end up moving to Hong Kong and what got you interested in food in the first place?

I took some time off after graduation and figured Hong Kong would be a good travel hub for 6 months. My dad’s side of the family lives in Hong Kong so it was the most economical way for me to travel. During my time in Asia and Australia, I found my passion for food and travel.

So you decided to start a food blog, which is so entertaining to read – by the way. What do you think helped set it apart – is there a specific niche that you had in mind?

I lucked out and met some amazing people in Hong Kong, my husband included. My friends and husband played a major part in motivating and inspiring me to start That Food Cray !!! My husband has been extremely supportive and showed me the ropes in terms of learning how to use WordPress as well as schooling me on photography. That Food Cray !!! differentiates itself from most food blogs and doesn’t take food too seriously. I’m not trying to be a food critic or shut people down for the sake of traffic. We try to keep it 100, funny, easy to digest, relatable and accessible with a strong focus on photography. We are constantly learning about new foods and exploring new places hoping to encourage others to also step out of their comfort zones to travel, to explore and try new things.

Most recently you’ve started the site ‘MISSBISH’ with two other gals, Lindsay & Gillian. It emanates empowerment for all women out there. Can you tell us a little about the mantra behind it and why you decided to embark on this wicked project?

MISSBISH is an editorial website with an e-commerce component that we started for women, to celebrate women. We focus on empowering women by creating strong female-driven content. We share stories about inspirational females who are killing it, whether in fashion, music, art, food, whatever. MISSBISH is essentially a community of beautiful women who are fearless, creative and empowering. We felt that this was something that was definitely missing, but so necessary.


Where do you draw your creative influences from and how does it evolve? Have you always been creative?

To be 100% honest, I’m still very new to this whole creative scene. Most of my creativity is inspired by the people around me. My closest friends are the ones who have pushed, challenged, and inspired me to move in the direction I’m moving in now. I feel like is another reason why building MISSBISH was so important to me on a personal level. For me, I wanted to build a network of women to inspire other females as a way of spreading the love / good karma that I have been blessed with. To answer your second question, I grew up in a pretty traditional Chinese household. At the end of the day, getting good grades in math, English, and science was what mattered. That being said, my parents also felt it was important to allow me to express my creativity via piano and art lessons. I also had hobbies including cooking, music and designing my AsianAvenue / Calgary Planet webpages haha.. However, when it came to choosing a career path, something that would land me a cushie 9-5 corporate job seemed like the right choice. I didn’t realize until afterward, that the financial industry was not me. Regardless of how hard I tried, it just wasn’t something I was passionate about.

What can you suggest for other girls out there working away at something they don’t feel fulfilled by – can anyone be a creative?

I strongly believe that anyone can be creative. You just have to find something you’re passionate about, work hard at it, and make it happen. This may sound super cliche, but anything is possible as long as you’re willing to commit and put in the work.

It must be hard to stay fit in the midst of a life of eating, striking a balance is everything; how often do you have to hit the gym?

This year, my new years resolution was to hit up the gym at least 2-3 times a week. So far, I haven’t fallen off the wagon! When I’m not stuffing my face with burgers, ramen, and whatever else I post, I’m probably eating something boring – like a salad or yogurt haha.

Last one, what’s your favourite place to eat in HK? (you can give us five, it’s hard to pick)

This is a tough call, so I’m going to name a few. Yardbird and Ronin – run by the same peeps, Matt Abergel and Lindsay Jang (she’s also one of my MISSBISHpartners). Tung Po is a fun spot with good vibes, the food isn’t amazing, but it’s always a good time. Sushi Shikon, my favorite sushi restaurant in Hong Kong. Via Tokyo if you’re into Japanese soft serve, it’s the best. Kakurega Ramen Factory, IMO the best tsukemen in HK.


Thanks for reading, If you enjoyed this please comment below or share it!  Sharing is caring.


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