Thursday, May 20, 2010

everyday is halloween

.......or so it might seem if you gauge your seasons by the subjects of your cakes. This past weekend, I had the pleasure of making a Left 4 Dead/ zombie themed cake for one of my very first DDC customers. I relish every opportunity I get to make cakes like that. Bloody body parts, decaying flesh...... I'm getting to live out my FANGORIA fueled dreams.
By now you all know about how a dog encouraged me to start DDC, but I haven't told you how a rat helped shape my business model. Back in 2005 I had first launched my website. Hoping to promote the site, I shopped around for link exchanges. One highly respected, sugar artist generously offered a section of her website as a directory for cake designers across the country. I knew that getting her approval would be equivalent to the Good Housekeeping Seal . I eagerly submitted my site, awaiting her OK.She replied that she loved my work , but she suggested that I remove the "dead rat cake". Now, she was not the first person to express a strong reaction to that cake. Some were disgusted , some intrigued , but all were interested. I realized that it was far more important to me to offer cakes that were above all else "interesting".Against the aforementioned artist's suggestion, I kept the rat. The rat was a symbol to let my potential clients know that nothing was too off beat, too strange.Over time the rat image was replaced by other , newer cakes, but I still get comments about it to this day. A cake that keeps people talking years later? Yep, I think I made the right decision.
Here's the Left 4 dead cake referenced and a nice little compilation of other Halloween/ horror themed cakes including the rat

Friday, May 7, 2010

does size matter?

..... probably not, still it's something I am fascinated with. Before you get all distracted, of course I'm taking about CAKE size! Like all cake professionals, I spend much of my free time looking at cake "porn" (I've got a theme going on here, huh? ). It's great to see all the wonderful work out there from my peers, but unless you are Cupcake Envy it's not always easy to ascertain a cake's scale. I know many times I have been surprised to find out a cake's true dimensions. Photos can be so deceptive. What I have learned is that Australian and English designers tend to make smaller cakes and, to assuage the American credo of "big is good but bigger is even better" American cake makers tend to craft larger cakes. Scarred by experiences at the old work place, I usually oversize an already outsized cake so servings are never an issue. Determining how many servings a cake will yield is an advanced art all in itself when you don't make round or square cakes.Alas, there is no chart at the ready to provide servings info for , say, a severed head cake.Experience is the only answer to this conundrum .
I thought it might be fun to see a few cakes in context. Thanks to all the people who lent their likenesses for this exercise. These are by no means the largest cakes I have made but are good representations of size
Plus..... it's a good way to show off some goofy photos!.