Painting, a progression…

I love to paint, but until recently, I painted almost exclusively in black and white.  I struggled with mixing colors; they always came out kind of muddy and I could never get realistic skin tones.  Given that I paint portraits, not being able to mix realistic skin tones was kind of a deal breaker for color.  So I stuck with blacks, whites, and greys. It was all very dramatic.

Even when I took color out of the equation, I was still not all that good at painting.  When I used a paintbrush I would spend most of my time getting frustrated with my inability to get the painting “perfect.”  The fact is I am not talented nor patient enough to paint the kinds of paintings that I wanted.  I was so hung up on perfection that I was making myself miserable, which completely defeated the purpose…I was not painting for the sake of creating beautiful art…I was supposed to be doing it to relax.  Instead, though, it was actively making me mad.

Something had to change.  I started using a palette knife in place of a paint brush.  The beauty of the palette knife was that there was no way to make a sort of photo perfect painting.  It was distorted and exaggerated by nature.  It allowed me to take a step back, take a breath, and relax again.  It suddenly wasn’t so serious.



Eventually I got bored with black and white.  I wanted to try color again, but thought that I would apply my new found, anti-perfection principles to the color as well.  I was never going to be able to get the color exactly accurate, so why not aim for something that is intentionally imperfect?


Once I started using color it was only a matter of time until I started wondering whether or not the painting with paint could translate into decorating with icing.  Clearly I had to try…



portrait cake

Each cake took a couple of hours to paint.  I really enjoyed making them, but they are completely impractical.  I would have to charge a ton of money to make them make sense…but who is going to pay over $100 for an 8″ or 10″ cake with a random painting on it?  Sadly, no one…

But, below are the videos of them being made:

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