Meet the Author
Hey there, can you introduce yourself?
Hi there! I'm Debbie Goard. I have a sculpted cake business in The San Francisco California area called "Debbie Does Cakes".I have been working in the cake industry for about 23 years now. I started Debbie Does Cakes in 2005. I focus exclusively on sculpted cakes, I don't offer any traditional cakes of any kind. i'm entirely self taught, although I do have a background in fine art.
Tell us a bit about the book?
"Twisted Cakes, Deliciously Evil designs for every Occasion" Is a super fun how to book chock full of in depth step by step photos for projects ranging from the relatively easy "Stabbed Knives" cupcakes to the advanced "Siamese Pigs" cake.I introduce some techniques rarely seen in cake craft books like airbrushing . I also hope that my use of unexpected tools inspires others to look around their own surroundings for items that can be repurposed in surprising ways.
What was the inspiration behind it?
My publisher, Judith More at Fil Rouge Press first approached me with an idea for an off beat/ horror cake book. She had me hooked from the first contact.Together we explored basic ideas and concepts and then Judith gave me great creative freedom to bring those concepts to life in cake form.
Which is your favourite project?
I am partial to the siamese pigs project as it gave me an opportunity to do something I really love: animal cakes, but with a twist.I imagined that those sweet faces could be equally at home frolicking in the meadow or stored in a jar, haha! It certainly challenges one's sensibilities to see a two headed animal as adorable.The project is the most complex , by far, but I think that I have done a good job pulling back the curtain on crafting gravity defying cakes.
What is your craft space like?
I have a commercial kitchen space, however, at most times it looks far more like a sculptor's studio.On any given day the place will have an array of the most disparate items. Right now I have a platter of edible holly alongside a deconstructed structure of a peeing chihuahua dog cake!
Have you always been creative?
I have! My first memories are of me with pen in hand drawing on whatever surface I could get away with.Haha!
When did you first start crafting?
I always had a sketch book and stacks of drawings even from a very young age.I was quite taken with miniatures as a child and decided at age 8 that I needed to build my own miniature chair.I truly had no idea what I was doing but I remember spending an entire day chanting"If at first you don't succeed, try and try again".I did try and try again and at the end of the day I had "something" that was chair like.
Who are your crafty heroes?
Since my background is in fine arts I am very influenced by the pop artists Andy Warhol and Claes Oldenburg. I also quite admire the DIY culture of vinyl figurines such as Munnys by Kid RobotThe book "Vinyl Will Kill" is such a visual feast..As for cake craft , I really enjoy Kate Sullivan's book. She has a really modern sensibility and approach that just keeps getting better and better.
Where do you find inspiration?
I literally look for inspiration in everything. What is wonderful about making cakes for clients is I never know what they will ask for next. So many projects have exposed me to new things and to tackle them in edible form.left to my own devices I think my work would be far less diverse and that would be my loss.
What's next for you?
I have gotten some great feedback from the book and the first question is usually "is there a second book in the works?" I have no immediate plans as of yet, but i do hope that happens. I feel like I know much more about the process now and I'd love to evolve that aspect of my career.As for my other work, I have been combining my fine arts and cake backgrounds and have shown in galleries. It's really exciting to be exposed to people who don't think about cake 24/7 and are still amazed with what one can achieve with sugar.
A show-stopping cookbook like no other, Twisted Cakes features arresting, eye-catching designs and instructions for creating deliciously, delightfully evil cakes and cupcakes for every occasion. San Francisco cake designer Debbie Goard, whose work has been featured on The Food Network’s “Cake Off” challenge, showcases shockingly original designs that range from surprisingly simple to challenging—to appeal to both novice and more experienced cake decorators—for such devilish delights as the Day of the Dead Sugar Skull, the Creepy Clown, the Venus Fly Trap, and the Can of Worms.