July 2013 in Instagram Photos

I love NYC in the summer. It’s packed with taco eating, cocktail drinking, full rainbows over Queens, and thunderstorms that make the NYC skyline look epic.

There is also Mr. Sunday, rooftop film screenings almost any night of the week (I personally love Lavender Lake’s), trivia nights, ferry rides, farmers markets, vintage French carnivals, beer gardens, popup pools, baseball games, Governor’s Island, open studios, outdoor markets, Coney Island, art fairs, Celebrate Brooklyn, flea markets, popup parties, Rockaway beach, Rockaway Taco, picnics in the parks, and so on and so on.

Since July is wrapping up I’m going to share some of my favorite Instagram photos from this month. Oh, and here I am on Instagram.

If you are a New Yorker I highly recommend subscribing to the Nonsense NYC newsletter. These folks send out a newsletter every Friday with a list of unique events happening the following week. For example on last week’s list there was a popup dance party taking place on the top floor of a parking garage in Chinatown. The space was transformed with installations and projections.  The list has some tamer events like street festivals and art shows on it as well.

Goodbye July, it’s been real. Hello August.

NYC Summer
NYC Summers via vkreesNYC Summers via vkreesNYC Summers via vkreesNYC Summers via vkreesNYC Summers via vkreesNYC Summers via vkreesNYC Summers via vkrees

NYC Summers via vkrees

NYC Summers via vkrees

NYC Summers via vkrees
NYC summers via vkrees

NYC Summers via vkrees


Stuart - That looks like one hell of a great summer. Good food, great friends, what more could you want. I especially like the crazy beer pumps. Really cool!

Ashley - Gosh. These are absolutely fantastic photos, Vanessa!!! You continue to blow me away. And popup pools + dance parties? I’m so in.

Annie Kruse | Stylejuicer - I’m already following you on Instagram but this collage is SOOOOO cool! Really get the NYC summer vibes coming across the Atlantic. ;-)

Kiran @ KiranTarun.com - Absolutely love following your adventures on Instagram — makes me want to pack it all up and move to NY!!

Moody Flowers

I recently did some mood shots for H.Bloom flowers and thought I’d share a few of my favorite photos. We titled the mood board Silver Autumn and ideas came easily from those two words of inspiration. A big thanks to the clients over at H.Bloom flowers for giving me some creative freedom in this shoot. It made the project extremely rewarding.

Flowers by Vanessa of V.K.Rees PhotographyH.Bloom Flowers by Vanessa Rees
H.Bloom mood shot by Vanessa ReesFlower Mood Shot by Vanessa Rees
H.Bloom Flowers by Vanessa Rees

Till next time! xo




Jackie @ Vegan Yack Attack! - These are all incredible, but that last shot.. I just love so much. Great job, as always!

Alison Dulaney - Such stunning work, I love the dark background with the inky blue flowers!

Lesley - Beautiful – the last one reminds me of old Dutch paintings.

Jade Sheldon-Burnsed - My word, these are so gorgeous…

Green Tomato Salsa With Fresh Corn & Roasted Peppers

Hello and happy July!

So, I love food photography but sometimes I feel like it takes itself way too seriously. This post is a reminder to myself that I started this blog to experiment and have fun. So here is something a little different (or weird)! Also the salsa is delicious. =)

Salsa by Vanessa and Rachel Rees


My sister Rachel came up with this salsa recipe. Here is what she has to say about it:

“This time of year the garden really kicks into high-gear and I start making salsa. Making salsa, for me, is all about finding a nice balance of color,texture, and heat and acid levels. Of course, it is all a matter of personal preference.  I find that building a salsa using a staged approach will give you the opportunity to modify the ratios to your taste.

This is a fun way to use green tomatoes. I also like this salsa because of the heat that the peppers bring in contrast to the sweet brightness of the corn. It’s super tasty with chips or grilled in tortilla with avocado. ” -Rachel

Salsa by Vanessa and Rachel Rees


  • 2 lbs green tomatoes, rinsed and quartered
  • 4 small garlic cloves, skin removed
  • 1 medium shallot, quartered
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of lemon or lime juice, freshly squeezed
  • 2 small jalapeño or habanero peppers, roasted (skin and seeds removed)
  • 3 medium carrots, skin removed and grated
  • 3 ears of sweet yellow corn, kernels shaved from the husk
  • A pinch of sugar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

To roast the peppers, set the oven on  broil. Place the peppers in an oven safe dish. Drizzle a light coat of canola oil on the peppers, just enough to make a light sheen on the peppers. Place the dish in the oven (middle rack works well), broil the peppers for 5 mins or until the skin bubbles slightly and a little brown. Flip the peppers on the other side, and repeat. Once broiled on both sides, remove the peppers from the oven. Set aside to cool.

Combine the tomatoes, garlic, shallot, cilantro, and the lemon/lime juice in the food processor. Using the pulse function on the food processor, combine the ingredients until the mixture takes on the desired constancy.

Now it’s time to add the heat–I recommend doing this one pepper at a time. I remove the skin and seeds to help control the heat (habaneros can pack a punch!). After the peppers are roasted, the skin should pull away very easily. Likewise, seeds can be removed easily by pulling off the stem of the pepper. The seeds can then be easily scooped out. You can always rinse the pepper under water to remove the seeds.

Place one pepper in the food processor, pulse until combined. Taste. Add more pepper(s) until you reached the desired heat level. Remember the heat can build quickly – take your time here.

Once you have the desired heat level, transfer the mixture from the food processor to a large bowl. Fold in the carrots and corn, and add a pinch of sugar. Salt and pepper to taste. Let the salsa sit for 10-15 minutes, taste again. Season to taste (you can always add more lemon/lime juice or peppers to increase acid or heat levels).


Salsa by Vanessa and Rachel Rees

Till next time!


Weekend links | Simple Bites - [...] Green Tomato Salsa With Fresh Corn & Roasted Peppers :: V.K. Rees Photography [...]

Atika - This is amazing. You always have a great idea, love your photos :)

Alison Dulaney - This is awesome!

Elodie {Framing Plates} - Best post ever! You never fail to surprise Vanessa with your creative. Brilliant photos!

Kiran @ KiranTarun.com - Your creative thought process has to be trademarked somewhere. Girl, you never cease to amaze :D

Abby {munchin' mel} - these photographs are so incredibly creative, Vanessa! you’re so talented – seriously genius. :)
as for the recipe… yum!! i’m obsessed with salsa, and this looks delicious. definitely worth a try!

Angela - This is the most fabulous, crazy thing I’ve seen in a while. Kudos!!

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar - What the?! haha these pictures are the best!! Lovely salsa, and post. I had a great laugh :)

Rachel - I love the way these photos came out!! But, where’s Marshall’s head shot? ;)

Hannah - Um, could you be more ridiculously talented? I mean, really. This looks super tasty – we’re loving white corn salsa at the moment, what with organic ears being like 50c each!

Ondina Maria - Truly funny photo session. And the salsa looks delicious and fun! :)

Amy - Ha, I love the photography.

Marie - You struck gold with these pictures! I’m so tired of all food blogs looking exactly the same and you finally did something different! Keep it up, the second image is amazing!

Caitlin - this is fantastic and so innovative! i cannot wait to make the salsa!

Aimee @ Simple Bites - You are seriously genius! I love that last image best; it must have involved some serious teamwork. Super fun post – and now I’m craving salsa.

sonia monagheddu - You’re amazing :) very funny photos!