(Randall Porter/Contributed)

What is your favorite summer dish? 

Hey Doll, Chef Lindsey Noto of Sysco Central Alabama and bestie of mine have shared the best summer salad recipe. It has become a favorite of mine. This recipe is an ode to the Southern summer cookout with her Alabama Summer Salad made with: arugula, honey cornbread, local peaches from Chilton County, corn, fresh, avocado, heirloom tomatoes, and a savory Conecuh bacon drizzled with an herb buttermilk vinaigrette. Find step-by-step instructions here.

What are some summer events you look forward to?

(Randall Porter/Contributed)

Hey Doll, if there is one event I look forward to it is the return of Birmingham’s most popular summer event, Art On The Rocks. Featuring performance artist Durand Bernarr will bring his unique blend of musical talents as the headlining act. The event will take place on Friday, August 4 from 7-11 p.m. Since 2005, Art On The Rocks has been a staple in Birmingham’s cultural calendar, and this year, the museum is excited to present an immersive and electric experience with music, art, and performances throughout the galleries, sculpture garden, and outdoor terraces.

Internationally acclaimed visual artist Amy Pleasant will invite Art On The Rocks guests to help her complete a commissioned large-scale installation. This interactive mural will take place in the museum lobby for the next iteration of Wall to Wall, a BMA site-specific exhibition series.

(Randall Porter/Contributed)

In addition to the extraordinary musical performance, Art On The Rocks will feature two DJs who will spin an eclectic mix of tunes throughout the evening, setting the perfect summer party vibe. Multiple activations will be spread across the museum, offering attendees a chance to engage with the artwork in unique and interactive ways. From live art demonstrations to participatory installations, guests will have the opportunity to dive deeper into the world of art and creativity. 

To elevate the experience for museum members, the Birmingham Museum of Art is introducing the RocksBox, an exclusive Art On the Rocks Members VIP section. Museum members will have access to this premium area, which offers exclusive seating and a private bar serving curated drink specials. The RocksBox offers an intimate experience for those seeking an elevated Art On The Rocks evening. 

Tickets for Art on the Rocks are now on sale at an early bird special of $35. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit the Birmingham Museum of Art website atartsbma.org. The event will also have a drag show, dance performers, and an immersive photo opportunity along with much much more. 

June Coffee (Randall Porter/Contributed)

What’s a good summer coffee drink? 

Hey Doll, as a new coffee lover I can not claim to be an expert. However, anyone without air conditioning surely has summer survival on their radar, and that means it’s time for summer coffee drinks. Lately, I’ve been loving a pistachio rose latte. June Coffee in downtown Birmingham serves one of the best I’ve had to keep my energy high and help me get through work or a workout when I might otherwise feel sun-drained and lethargic. It’s the ultimate afternoon pick-me-up, especially on a sweltering day. 

Sugar, Pistachios, and rose. That’s it! – June Coffee 

How do I add some heat to a men’s summer fit?

Hey Doll, I know dressing for summer can be a challenge since you need to style your look with fewer layers. However, with a few eye-catching pieces + accessories, you can definitely elevate your summer look. Here are 3 standout men’s pieces that I added into my wardrobe this summer. I love a strappy leather sandal for functionality and aesthetics, embroidered or billowy shorts, and textured IT bags are a few ways to help your looks pop off this summer. 

(Randall Porter/Contributed)

How do I get an aesthetic social media feed? 

Hey Doll, social media is often someone’s initial contact with a brand, and nearly half of its users shop on the platform each week. Taking the time to create an engaging Instagram feed aesthetic is one of the most effective ways to persuade someone to follow your business’s Instagram account or peruse your posts. You only have one chance to make a good first impression, so it’s critical that you put effort into your Instagram feed. 

Two things I do to create an aesthetic feed are being consistent and collaborating with other creatives or photographers to build my feed. 

Studio Lucid

Randall’s photos are shot in Studio Lucid. Studio Lucid is an incredibly versatile space located in the heart of downtown Birmingham across from the Alabama Theatre. It’s truly one of the only studios in town with gorgeous natural light. The studio was developed by Ryan D’Alessio, Ginnard Archibald, Kenslie McGuire, and Shannon Clarke.

Ryan, a local real estate mogul, saw the need for a space for the creative community in town. Ginnard, a local video director, agreed with this need and worked to develop the bounds of the space. Kenslie, a local photographer, was brought on to help develop the visual style and character of the space. Shannon used her unmatched brand design skills to create an identity for Studio Lucid. The result? It is a space perfectly designed to foster creativity. Whether you are shooting social content, photos, videos, or having a gathering, the goal of Studio Lucid is to leave you feeling inspired. Visit their Instagram @studiolucidbhm or click here to book.