Photo Credit: Kat Akers of Requiem Images

Hi! My name is Nikole Boyda McGuinness. I am a food, travel and lifestyle blogger and influencer who is both, creative & curious. I am an image maker; both photos and illustration, a food lover; reviewer and creator of new recipes, world traveler & story teller. My mantra in life is to “savor life one bite at a time.”

I am originally from Pittsburgh, PA where I currently live, but have also spent time in Atlanta, GA, Albuquerque, NM, and most recently, Portland, OR. I returned “home” the fall of 2017 for family reasons and have not looked back. I’m excited with what is currently undergoing in my hometown as it transitions into a sort of new renaissance; food wise, tech wise and creatively speaking, as well. I say that Pittsburgh is where Portland used to be, in that beautiful emerging state, around 20 years ago with a little urban grit around the edges. I’m anxious to be a part of what continues to develop here.

My background is in fine and graphic arts. I was a partner in a small design and branding agency focused on helping small businesses and start-ups until my father was diagnosed with cancer. I took a step away from the company that I helped create, to focus on and care for him, and during this time was surprisingly led onto another path. I found that cooking was a positive distraction for me. It was almost a meditative process, and not only did I fall in love, but I fell hard. I began traveling the world in search of new knowledge, cultural understanding and food experiences. During this time, I thought a lot about focusing on telling my story through food and images here on The Simple Chefista. With my background in art and design acting a support role, my focus is now completely on this virtual arena of food, travel, and creating and life that is simple, but overflowing with beautiful moments.

If I’m not behind the lens, my desk or the kitchen island mixing and meddling, you can usually find me in my backyard planting and playing in the dirt, walking the trail or searching for treasures at the local antique stores and flea markets. There’s nothing better than a treasure found!! Or, I will be spending time with those that I love most; my husband, John, and our menagerie of cats, three chihuahuas; Izzy, Lucy and Pucci, and four chickens; Yaytse, Heuvo, Tamago, and Oeuf. All are named “egg” in a different language. I’ve started the creation of what will become a “micro farm” in my backyard with all the fruits, veggies, herbs and flowers, and support the idea of buying and working with small batched artisan companies, local farms and seasonal foods. Although I love being close to home, my interest stretch to the far reaches of the world in learning about different cultures and processes used in growing foods and creating that special dish. I hold a strong belief that food is a commonality that helps us to understand one another and has the ability to bring us closer together. At the end of the day, setting differences aside, we all still need to be nourished.

I am currently accepting new collaborations and projects. I am available for content creation including food and product photography, illustrations and/or styling, recipe development, product/brand ambassadorship, and sponsored recipe posts. Rates will vary depending on scope of work, usage and exclusivity. Please reach out to me with all budget levels. I would love to learn more about your business and/or product, your objectives, and to talk with you to figure out ways that can work within your financial plan. Thank you for stopping by, and for your interest in The Simple Chefista. In the meantime, I hope that you remember to savor life one bite at a time.

For questions, comments or conversation, please contact me at