Chef, Photographer, Visual Artist

Meet Makayla Robinson

Makayla Robinson is a Caribbean-Canadian woman. She is starting her first-year in a culinary management program at George Brown College. She practices a variety of art forms including photography, cosmetology, painting, and drawing; her main artform being culinary arts. She was born an artist through her parents' love of the arts and has always had a creative mindset.

Her earliest memories of being interested in the creative arts..

... was watching Mr. Maker on TV and attempting to do not only the crafts she saw but also ones from arts and crafts books she got from her parents. She loves that her parents gave her the space and materials to do the art she loved. She always loved to cook but really started to pursue it closer to the end of elementary school and it was her ultimate goal to go to the only culinary management program in Canada.

She not only made it into this dream program but ...

... also had many opportunities along the way to showcase her skills. The kitchen has always been her happy place and always will be.

She has led many art projects including a Mural at her former high school Westview Centennial as well as painting a city of Toronto utility box. Art has helped her grow by showing her that her work is valuable, to not compare herself to others, and not to worry about others opinions and judgments.

Her future plans are to become a hot shot restaurant owner with multiple restaurants around the world providing different people and families amazing restaurant meals.

"Where's The Balance?"

Culinary Arts & Food Photography - Artist Statement

   My project Where’s the Balance?, explores the relationship between a balanced diet and cost efficient meals all while still being delicious. A balanced diet contains different types of food in certain quantities and proportions so that the requirement for calories, proteins, minerals, vitamins and alternative nutrients is adequate, as well as trying to use most if not all the main food groups for every meal. With all that in mind, occasionally eating junk food will not prevent you from still eating a balanced diet, eating junk food in moderation ensures that you are able to give your body what it needs without harming it. When I started this project, it was originally about eating healthy, however, diving further into my project, I started to realize the word ‘healthy’ is often associated with being vegetarian or vegan. But, you can 100% be healthy and still consume meat and dairy products.

There are 7 members of my family, the youngest being 3 years old, so when coming up with meals I have to take into consideration what looks good, tastes good, and includes at least 2 of the main food groups all within a budget. The meals we eat almost always include some form of fresh fruits or veggies, whether it be wraps, salads, taco bowls, sandwiches, and sometimes just some cucumbers on the side with dinner. Also, we like to include certain foods like pasta sauce or things that have veggies. Incorporating these foods into meals is a great way to ensure kids and anyone at that, will eat their veggies.

I live in a lower-income community which means that we don’t necessarily have grocery stores like Whole Foods or farmers markets in the area that provide organic options or fresh foods so we have to make do with what we got. There’s nothing wrong with getting food or ingredients or produce from FreshCo, No Frills, or Walmart. Sometimes you just have to know how to prepare it, give it flavour, and make sure it tastes and looks great and that’s what I did with this project. All my ingredients were from either FreshCo, No Frills or Walmart, everything was within budget and at the end of the day it made an amazing meal.

  As a chef with a bigger family, my main audience and focus is other people with big families. I know what it’s like having lots of different people with lots of different opinions, taste buds, likes and dislikes, so creating meals that appeal to everyone and everyone will enjoy will always be my ultimate goal, whether it be in a magazine, cookbook or a restaurant.

The recipe will be available in the magazine release