Friday, June 22, 2012

Discovering My Inner Artist - 3 days with Rick Reichart of Cakelava

I have just spent 3 days learning to step out of my comfort zone, throw all tools (well almost all) out the window, and think organically!  If you know me, then you know all 3 of those were difficult for me.  But I did it!!!  Rick Reichart, the uber talented cake designer out of hawaii known for his eye popping designs (and the spongbob challenge on Food Network), made me do it!

Rick and I

I was in Kitchener for Rick's Discover Your Innner Artist 2 class.  Having missed DYIA1 in March 2012 and hearing all about from friends who took it, I knew that as soon as the owner of Icing Inspirations/Too Nice To Slice (aka hostess with the mostess, aka my BCF) told me on the DL that Rick was coming back, my name was on the list - no questions asked, no clue as to what I'd be learning.  I.  Just.  Knew.

My gut instinct is almost never wrong, and it was right again!  My week started with a bus ride to Toronto, where I finally got to personally meet a super cool lady I've met on fb - Karey - when she picked me up to take me to class since we'd be classmates.  Karey is one of the sweetest, kindest, giving people I have met through the online cake community, and she is just as AWESOME in person.  It was as if we knew each other our entire lives.  I returned home feeling like I have a second BCF - what can I say, I am an extremely lucky guy to have great friends!

But I digress.  Back to class.  Day 1 was a little intimidating.  Many new faces, a new instructor, and many new challenges.  Rick introduced us to his style of decorating.  The one word that describes his style to me is ORGANIC.  Everything he does is done with a few simple tools.  Challenging for someone like me, who relies on essentially every cutter and gizmo out there.  Yes I am a product of the cake tool industry!  We spent the first day making our sushi table and all of the petals and leaves for our flowers.  No cutters were used at all.  Just templates and free hand cutting.

Finished petals and leaves

Day 2,  I was able to relax (well a little).  We covered our cake dummies, added our FREEHAND tattoo design and airbrushed.  This was one of the reasons I wanted to take this class - Rick is an airbrush genius!  I learned so much about the proper way to handle my airbrush and techniques for nice clean work.  We also painted all of our petals and leaves.  After class, we were off to group dinner at the Bauer Kitchen, a tradition at Icing Inspirations!  Getting to know your classmates and instructors on a more personal level really solidifies the group dynamic I think, and that is something unique to the Icing Inspirations class experience (along with the delicious catered lunches we are fed each day).

Airbrushed and waiting for decoration

Day 3 was action packed as we airbrushed our petals and leaves to add depth, placed them on the cake and finished our sushi platters.  Yes I know what alot of the sushi looks like - let's not go there!  I flew home on day 3 and my wedding cake made it home in good condition with the exception of some breakage of the flower on top - which I am replacing.  I was also inspired by the inspiration photos we were given in class and will be adding something to my cake that nobody else has - I will post a final pic when it is done!

My finished cake pre-travel :)

Sushi Anyone?  Complete with chopsticks and WASSABI!

(my cake xray)

Overall, I had an amazing time as always.  I met many new people and made new friends that I hope to see again in the near future!  I also left comfortable to step outside my comfort zone and look at things in a simple way of producing great results.  If you would like to have the Icing Inspirations experience, please visit their website and enroll in one of their upcoming celebrity classes - with such great instructors as Karen Portaleo, Lindsey Sinatra, Kaysie Lackey, Courtney Clark, Robert Hayes and Diane Phillips.  Contact Chrissie for info on special room rates at Delta (I loved my stay there).  Also stay tuned to my blog as I will be making a couple of huge exclusive announcements about more fun stuff at Icing Inspirations in the next few weeks - hey it pays to be BCFs with the owner!

Until Next Time,
Happy Caking!

1 comment:

  1. big aloha to you mark...! great blog post and great work on your cake.!

    you really got the point of the class and thanks for your enthusiasm.!.., rick