Tuesday, May 26, 2009

My Awesomest Project To Date

Aloha my friends, how was the weekend? I was on a baby making marathon, literally speaking! Lol...Sugarpaste babies, that is. I was busy moulding little babies under blankets, cute blue bibs and green booties. In short, all things ah-dorable for a bab boy :) More of that later yea.

Ok now, back to the topic of this post. Last month, my ex-colleague Nick chatted with me over gmail and he posed a rather serious question. I didn't know if I should say yes or no. Ok it wasn't a marriage proposal...*rolls eyes*...he asked if I was up to making an X-Men themed cupcakes. I've always got a soft spot for old-school comics and to have them on cupcakes are just...to quote Russell Peters; mind blasting! I hesitated. For one, I don't think fondant makes a good base for painting. And there's no erasing once you paint the colours on. What if I screw up? But somehow I did not turn down the challenge, as much as I have no clue on what to do. To make things a little bit easier for me, I committed to a total of 9 cuppies only.

As time is of the essence (the set was meant for a birthday). 3D figure modelling is out of the question. Not to mention how crazy it sounds! 3D Wolverine? I am kidding myself here. After much brainstorming I finally had an inspiration. 2D headshots are do-able....i think.

It took me 3 hours with just ONE topper. I started with the simplest among the bunch, which happened to be Wolverine. The most difficult part was the method of execution. The sugarpaste had to be the right texture; too wet and it tears easily, too dry and it becomes brittle and crumbles like a crispy egg roll. Painting the outlines was another challenge. Steady hands does the trick. And lack of breathing certainly helps :)

All and all, it took me 4 nights to finish this set. I suppose it could be done within a couple of days if I am doing this fulltime. Alas, I am still juggling my day job with this true love of mine. Am not complaining though, I am very grateful to have a permanent income to support what I'm doing. Hey...butter and eggs don't just fall off from the sky do they...lol...

And now my friends, let's marvel (oh goodness...pardon the pun will ya...lol) at these beauties....

from l-r: Dark Phoenix, Nightcrawler, Colossus, Cyclops, Wolverine & Storm

Monday, May 11, 2009

Pwin-chess and The Little Mutated Blue Cats

Hello! Happy Mother's Day, hope it's not too late :) How did it go? We celebrated mom's birthday and Mother's day the week before, as all of us are in town. Went to a restaurant that is famous for it's yummy food but sad to say while the food still tastes alright, the ambience and quality of service have dropped. Business was doing so well that the owners decided to relocate to a brand new, more spacious building (3 storeys!) that looks splendid from the outside but the interior looked like a big hall with lots of tables and chairs. I think it's effective for a banquet but I find that the place lacks 'emotion'. I like to step into a restaurant that exudes a warm welcoming feeling....well, perhaps that's just me :) After dinner my brother & SIL took my parents to the river cruise. It was lovely! Unfortunately I had to take a rain check as I had cupcake project to work on. It was a pwin-chess theme for Su Yin's niece. A quick pic here, they're good old choc cake with cocoa buttercream;

notice how my figurines are always on the 'healthier' end of the scale? haha...

Ok moving on to my actual post (bet you noticed by now there are no cats whatsoever from the above pic), I was commissioned a Doraemon theme birthday cuppy by an ex-schoolmate, Sally. It's for her little son's birthday. He's only 2! How adorable :) Btw, my friend Nick & I have come to a conclusion that Doraemon must be mutated. Why else does it sound all funny (at least the dubbed Malay version is!) and has a small propeller on it's head? Heehee.....

It was surprisingly rather simple to construct the 3D figurines but it took me quite a while deciding on the shade of blue. You'd think it was trademarked...but no! There were so many variations on the web! I finally decided that I like my little blue cats to be somewhat 'tanned' :)

I did the 3D figurines 'factory assembly' style. It's proven to be more effective and the quality control is better, in terms of size. I managed to get all 6 of them within the same size. And the weather has been sooooooo hot and dry, it was great for working with fondant. All I did was to add some CMC (Tylose or gum tex is also fine) powder and the paste worked like a charm. Fuss free fondant figurines! If only all projects are like this!

As for the 2D ones, the trickiest part is drawing the black lines for the whiskers. My hands were shaking and one poor Doraemon ended up looking constipated. Heehee....ah well, trial and errror...trial and error. As for the rest of the designs, I could only think of rainbows....what else goes with Doraemon?? Other than Dorayaki of course. But I wanted something more cheerful looking...nothing beats rainbow when it comes to cheerful...agree?

As usual after a lengthy blabber, here's a couple of pics for your viewing pleasure :)

the dreamy effect is a result of smudged lens....i was in a hurry, not the best of pictures.

Design flaw - these little buggers really need something stuck up their a****
As you can see, I had to shove them down the buttercream mid way in order to make them stay.
With a little spaghetti strip sticking out of their butts, I could poke it through the cake instead, so better support!

Ok, just to show you the full figurine, they look much cuter with the tummy and little feet...if you could see pass the distracting twisted bra strap of course....lol..