Connecting Canada: The Food Gays talk blogs, cookbooks, and the Vancouver food scene

May 24 2018, 5:16 am

TELUS is proud to connect Canadians from coast to coast to Canada’s largest and fastest mobile network, empowering luminaries like these to inspire change through technology.

Daily Hive’s Connecting Canada series features Canadians who motivate and inspire us, and keep our cities connected. From entrepreneurs to social media influencers to community leaders, we dig deep to find out how these change-makers got started, their daily success strategies, and how technology keeps them at the top of their game.

The Food Gays are a staple in the Vancouver food scene, and for good reason.
Jeremy Inglett and Adrian Harris have been tasting, testing, and blogging about the city’s best eats for more than half a decade, and have turned what was once a hobby into full-time careers.
The two develop and post recipes on their blog, and have also taken on social media and photography for a number of clients.
We spoke to the duo about how they got to where they are today, and what’s expected for the future of The Food Gays.

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What inspired you to start the blog and how did you get from there to where you are now?

We first started on Tumblr just over five years ago, mainly as something to do together and to get more enjoyment out of our city. At the time we were both in jobs we clearly didn’t love, and we used The Food Gays as a way to meet new people in the community, find new places to eat, and of course learning some new skills along the way.

Since we started back in 2012 our blog was once a hobby, and now it’s a full-time job that we love!

There’s such a steep learning curve when starting a new business, and no one person can tell you exactly how that’s going to look. We’ve learned a lot by trial and error, to be totally honest. You’ve got to be unafraid to make some mistakes to see success.

What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced in that time, and how did you overcome them?

The biggest challenge has probably been time management. Being just two people, handling every aspect of a small business can sometimes feel like you’re constantly in need of an extra hand, but you’ve got to do it on your own. Everything is a decision, and there isn’t really anyone hanging over you or micromanaging you to get things done. So you really have to be willing to put in the work. That’s a big one.

What would your advice be for people trying to get into the same industry?

Just start. Don’t overthink it, and don’t start with some giant end goal, because you’ll probably end up disappointed. It’s important to enjoy the actual process of all of it. Blogging while you have an actual paying job is the best way to start. It’s really challenging to find full-time income for most freelancers, unless you’re able to diversify, and do multiple things that interest you.

Being original is an important part to standing out, and it takes time to develop a style. For us we first started out with a memorable name, and tried our best to be personable, polite, and professional to anyone we met, whether it was a PR person or a fellow blogger. Just being nice goes a long way. Don’t be shy, and say hello to the person beside you. Never expect anything just because you’re a blogger. Great things come to those who work hard and appreciate the opportunities that are earned.


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What does your average workday look like, and what do you wake up looking forward to doing?

Every day is different. It keeps work fun and exciting. We usually dedicate our morning to preparing social media posts for our client, East Village Vancouver, while afternoons are usually focused on Food Gays content. Generally, we’ll be testing, cooking, or photographing something — it really depends. We just finished our first cookbook, which was an amazing experience. Now that required some strict scheduling, let us tell you.

How does technology factor into what you do?

Our camera and computer are absolutely necessary to what we do each day, so we’d put those pretty high on the list. Without the internet we wouldn’t have a blog or social media, so it’s also a pretty vital part of what we do. But we do like to think that no one platform is responsible for our success, or lack thereof. It really comes down to quality of work, and keeping your clients and audience happy.

The relationships we’ve built are truly at the heart of our business, in our opinion. Instagram allows us the ability to make a good income from sponsorships, but if it disappeared tomorrow, we’d find another way to make it work, as any artist would.


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What are 5 apps you can’t live without?

  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • Google Maps
  • VSCO
  • Snapseed

What skills are essential to your job and do you think having an industry niche is an advantage?

Great photography skills and food styling abilities aside, a good attitude is probably the best “skill” we’d say you need. Another would be dedication. Part of how we excelled at styling and photography was simply geeking out — studying images and fixating on details. There’s never really enough to learn. We’re both pretty passionate learners if its something we’re in love with – that’s probably part of the equation that either comes naturally or doesn’t. Not really sure.

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