Welcome to my FAQ page, where I’ve tried to assemble some of the questions I often get. (See, I know what FAQs are all about.) If you have any other questions not addressed here about gingerbread or the mysteries of the universe, don’t hesitate to ask me. Head over to my contact page to do so.
“Gingerbread Artist”? Really? Is that even a thing?
To be honest, I am always really apprehensive about referring to myself as an artist, since I don’t consider myself very artistically talented, but I’m slowly growing the confidence to do so in this particular instance, so let’s just roll with it, ‘kay?
Is everything edible?
Almost everything is 100 % edible, apart from the toothpicks I bake into the figures to make them stand. (And in the case of my Harry Potter cakes, those toothpicks have doubled as wands.) Everything is not only edible, but also (if I do say so myself) rather delicious.
How long does it take for you to make a project?
I haven’t exactly timed the whole process; before I even start baking, I like to research potential new techniques needed and playing around with test runs in the kitchen, plus actually planning a project (what to make, how to make it) can take a really long time. Previous projects have been in the planning stage from everything between two years to just a few days, so it differs greatly, depending on the project. (With that said; those that has taken me years could of course have been done in a shorter amount of time, but with my bigger December projects I enjoy planning and sketching and building up excitement for it for at least the whole year leading up to it.) From actually making the dough to have a finished project in hand, it usually takes a few days or up to two week. If I didn’t struggle with depression and a resulting lack of efficiency, I would probably be able to put together a smaller project on a day or two, and a larger one on three to five days. After finishing my gingerbread piece, I also spend a few hours setting up lighting, photographing the whole thing, and then editing the pictures in the end. People always seem to be surprised at the amount of time it takes to create these things, but luckily for me, I love all the stages.
Do you bake everything from scratch?
Almost everything you see in my cakes are made from scratch, yes. I have made occasional exceptions, such as store-bought marzipan and pretzel sticks. I also buy the candy I melt down for wigs.
Why don’t you use more food coloring?
I will often mention how I use as little artificial coloring as possible in my work. This is not because I’m opposed to using food coloring and/or colored fondant as a principle; in fact, bakers who master this always impress me immensely. But for personal anxiety- and eating-disorder reasons I’m extremely anxious about eating and working with food in unnatural colors, so I try to keep everything as natural as I can. You will notice that I occasionally use pre-colored sprinkles, and melted candy for my wigs and things like flames and magic spells, but I just avoid eating those myself. That is one out of two reasons why I try to limit what colors I use. The other reason comes down to my preferred way of being creative when it comes to baking; one of the things I enjoy the most is figuring out what materials to use, what natural colors, shapes, and textures work best for whatever it is I’m creating. And I also happen to really like the gingerbread/chocolate color scheme, so there’s that :)
Why gingerbread? How did you get started?
I love to bake (didn’t see that one coming, huh?), I really enjoy (pretty much all kinds) of creative fan art, and lastly, I was trained as a magician throughout my childhood, which early in life cemented a love for illusions, everything theatrical and ostentatious, and the look on someone’s face, when you surprise them with the weird, unlikely or unimaginable. And somehow that led to this? My first gingerbread project was a(n absolutely ridiculous) Hogwarts castle + grounds that took up an entire table, and after that, there was just no going back.
May I suggest you make my favorite scene from Doctor Who next?
Yes, of course! I am always open to ideas, so if you have any favorite scenes from favorite shows or movies or books you would love to see in gingerbread form, don’t hesitate to make a suggestion. I will of course not commit to anything, but I love hearing what you guys are interested in seeing. I am always planning far ahead when it comes to what projects I want to make in the future (and there are a lot of those), so if we share a geek love, there is a big chance your favorite scene is already in the works.
What is your favorite project that you’ve created?
I’m most proud of my version of Jack’s Lament in The Nightmare Before Christmas, the tree of the Dead in Sleepy Hollow, these cool Weirwood trees, my chocolate mousse Balrog, and this grisly version of The Red Wedding. Other projects that have a special place in my heart – because they were just too darn fun to make – are the Hogsmeade Village I made with the help of my friend Sofie, the candy lightsaber Star Wars battle, and the one where Viserys’ face melts off.
May I share your art with the world?
Oh, absolutely! That is why I put it on the Internet, after all. And also, you are the best! As long as you leave the watermark on the photos, link to my site, and give me credit, I’d be honored if you would share my work!