Monday, October 10, 2011

Oh yes I CAN-CAN!


Hello people of Bloglandia! I have been drifting out somewhere on the fringes of the Blogosphere, but I have returned! (Actually I have been to the Oklahoma State Sugar Art Show by the invitation of Kerry Vincent, giving  demonstrations and teaching classes!)  While I deeply respect those people who blog with such regularity,  alas, I may never be one of them. But I have dusted off the cobwebs here at Special Sugar, brewed a huge cafe con leche, and I'm ready to post something new!

I recently had the opportunity to make a cake for an event benefitting Kate's Club here in Atlanta. Kate's Club is a place for kids who have lost family members. They can hang out and talk to other kids who understand what they are going through. Amazing, right?

The event was a cabaret, in the style of Moulin Rouge. They gave me free range to do what ever I wanted (rubs hands together with devilish expression), so I said "OOOOH, I'm making a big Can Can Dancer!!!!" before they had a chance to suggest restraint and good taste.

Right around the same time, I got a call from a German television show called Galileo, asking if I had any good cakes coming up that they could film me making. "Well...as a matter of fact.." So they flew a small crew in, and they filmed the making of Busty McChesterfield. (of COURSE Joshua came up with that!)

So let me show you what I did...

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Getting My Paint On...

Delayed by the hospitalization of my laptop, I am finally rejoining the blogosphere! I've been wanting to post about one of my favorite cake arts, which is painting on cake, so let's get to it!

One of the reasons the transition between the art world and the cake world felt so seamless to me is because  many of the techniques I used with clay sculpting translate well in the cake realm. Some are even easier. Certainly many of them are faster. Getting color on a 3-D object is most definitely one of those faster/easier activities. In clay, there are loooooong firings, layers of color, and big surprises when you open the kiln! 

But CAKE...well, cake is a kinder, gentler object d'art.  It doesn't explode, (well it can, but it's gonna cost ya), the colors stay (fairly) true, and unlike clay sculptures, cake is delicious. 

Almost every cake I do involves laying on color of some sort, usually with either airbrush or paintbrush, or both. I love both. You've already seen, in previous posts, a lot of painting, but here are a few I haven't posted before.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sugar Zoo

Today's post is a little less "this is how I did it" and a lot more "this is what I've done". I'd hoped to have a post about the making of a Scarlett O'Hara cake, but the fickle Miss Scarlett cancelled her party. Well fiddle-dee-dee. I was going to do the green gown, but now it's curtains. (I posted that line on Facebook, and I think everyone missed the joke, but I'm not giving up...), and alas, there were no cakes these past few weeks which I would like to show you the making of. There was another Gucci purse with a yorkie, this time it had hundred dollar bills in its mouth and bursting out of the purse. I love you all too much, and frankly, I can't really explain that one.

But it did make me reflect on animal cakes I've done, and this brings me to today's post. Animals are one of the most popular themes for cakes. Everyone wants their dog made from something they can cut into and eat. I guess. No one ever asks for their cat. Now there's a subject to ponder...


Saturday, May 21, 2011

Time for the OCTOBLOG! So get KRAKEN....

Probably more than any other cake I have done to date, my Giant Octopus Cake has gotten a bit of attention. It was recently in National Geographic Kid's, and will be in their upcoming book "Weird But True". Anyone who knows me will not be surprised to see my name associated with that title. A picture of it also went viral, a phenomenon I learned about when my Flickr account suddenly had 113,000 hits over night.

I have a thing for Octopuses. Or Octopi. I should look that up.
I have a tattoo of one on my left wrist, which has been there for 20ish years. I just think they are the most unusual creatures on earth. They fascinate me. So when the Georgia Aquarium asked me to create a cake for their annual benefit "Aquavino", and gave me no restrictions, I went straight to my fave.

For those of you who haven't seen her, here she is...


Awwww...she's pretty, right? Well, as her Cake Mother, I think she's lovely, anyway. Because she's a giant! Octopus! Cake!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Coca Cola Cake; small team, big corporation...

My team rocks it daily. I mean my team is good. I love my team. Can I show you the most recent reason why?

A few weeks ago we got a call from CHIK-FIL-A (!), asking if we would make a cake for them to present to COCA COLA(!) for Coke's 125th birthday celebration. Um, yes...yes we can.

The first thing I did (after jumping around the shop a little) was a couple of sketches. To cut to the chase, this is the one they chose.

Can you even believe I sent a sketch like this? But I did. And they liked it!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Approaching the Sumo...

For no discernible reason, I chose to make a Sumo Wrestler cake for Uncork a Cure, an event that happens annually here in Atlanta. I usually do a fun cake, because they don't care what I do, so it's my chance to do what I want to do. 


I don't know how or when this Sumo popped in to my head, but he must get out. He's much too big to stay in there, it's crowded enough. So Sumo cake it is.


Last year I did this cake:



I call it the "Pink Madame" cake. Joshua insists on calling her "Beatrice Magillicutty". He likes to name things.

To launch my Sumo, I need to start with a sketch. Sometimes my sketches are super detailed, and sometimes they look like I brushed my dog over a piece of paper.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Quietly sneaking in...

Without officially splashing loudly into the pool, I'm dipping my toes in first. Loud splash to follow. Since this is my first official blog post, I feel like I should wish me luck or something. Mostly, I need to see how this works. And to explain the video posted below. Two years ago, Food Network contacted me and asked me to submit a quick video audition, and this is what I sent. I guess it worked, because I've been on a few times!
Since there are no real links yet, I'm not sure who may stumble upon this. But to anyone who does, tune in to Last Cake Standing, starting April 3rd. I'll be assisting Joshua John Russell, my co worker, friend and frequent travel companion, as he competes for the $100,000 prize!

And if you should find me pre-launch, then stay tuned! There's lots to talk about, pictures to see, shows to watch, classes to plan...I'm so READY to get STARTED!