For this collaboration I have chosen to do a piece inspired by the work of Margaret MacDonald Mackintosh.
Although her career has been historically overshadowed by her husband Charles Rennie Mackintosh, she was one of “the Glasgow Four” and a celebrated artist in her own right working in various mediums. In fact many of the pieces that people associate with Charles are the work of Margaret, or collaborations between the pair. Charles wrote of his wife, “Margaret has genius, I have only talent”. She is known to have been a big influence on the work of a young Gustav Klimt.
Inspired by the natural world, botanic motifs and seasonal tones, her decorative panels are some of her best-known pieces. They often depict haunting feminine figures, with voluminous clothing or elongated shapes, and use a combination of techniques including subtle paintwork, textured surfaces, corded outlines, and gilded details. Although geometrically inspired, they were never symmetrical giving a real sense of nature and movement, and imperfections were seen as part of the beauty of the work.
For this piece I took a couple of small images I liked and worked out a basic shape to envelope the cake surface. I started with a white fondant covered cake and traced a basic facial outline onto the surface. I then applied petal dusts (both on their own and mixed into paints) to give a matt finish when dry. I deliberately tried to keep the painting style loose, then started to over-pipe.
I started off trying to pipe carefully and keep the lines smooth (not my strongest skill on a vertical surface so it was taking me ages), but it quickly became clear that I was rather killing the loose style by doing that so I scraped those lines off and started again with some very much faster and looser piping using various widths of nozzle. The final touches were added with various shades of lustre dust paint.
On the whole I’m pretty happy with her and I like the looseness that the painting outside the lines, rough lines and imperfect gilding gives, even if it did feel quite alien to me to avoid perfection.
Kasserina Cakes, Sussex
Jaw dropping gorgeous … and I learned something along the way :) Thank you!
The Garden Baker
So pretty! I love the flow and I agree that the imperfections are perfect.
Artsy Cakesy, Baker•Caker•DreamMaker.