Grabbing for my Inspirational Tale

This blog is as much about inspiration and following your dreams as it is a place where I can show my art and shoot the gip. Well today I have a wonderful story of a woman living in my town. Her name is Mandy Campbell and she is the owner of Extreme Cakes. I just finished reading an article on her in our local paper Her type of baking has become very popular on TLCand The Food Network but her story is such an inspiration that I thought I'd share it here with my homies.

First of all I was shocked to see someone having a store dedicated to 3-D sculptural cakes in this small town I live in. Insert critiques voice...IS THERE REALLY A MARKET "HERE" FOR "THAT"? So I read on and find out that recently she was asked by the Smithsonian (yes the one in D.C) to create a cake to commemorate thee100th Anniversary of the Museum of Natural History.

Here she is with the  5 feet long and 2 feet high replica of the Natural History Museum Building

Well you know what I thought. OUT OF ALL THE CAKE BAKERS IN THE WORLD HOW DID THEY PICKED HER FROM SMALLVILLE USA? So I'm really getting into the article now THEN I find out that this seasoned baker's store has only been open ONE MONTH! And she's already in the paper and making cakes for the Smithsonian. What's up with that?

By now it's just me and the paper. I gave my students their work and I'm lost in this odyssey. (Yes I am at work reading the paper and typing this blog...but it's not what you think. Well maybe, but a girl's gotta do what she's gotta do.) Anyway, I turn the page, completely enthralled in her meteoric rise and see that TLC has also contacted her and is thinking of featuring her on Amazing Cakes.

She looks like she's about to bark!

popcorn cupcakes. How come I never thought of that? LOL
  Ok. Ok. Ok. Now I'm  fired up and thinking to myself...I have to meet this wild woman. But here's the clincher folks, the ICING ON THE CAKE so to speak.

She has only been doing sculptural cakes for SIX MONTHS!

As an artist,  I sometimes wonder how I can EVER bring this deep passion of expressing myself through colors, shapes and textures to the surface of my life. Well reading this article touched every part of me and piece by piece dismantled all of my reasons WHY NOT. I'm so touched by Mandy's story that I think I might just have to stop by her shop today and meet her in person.
OLD Reasons IT won't work...

1. No one can find me because I live in a small town.
2. There's no market for what I do
3. Or even better, everyone is already doing it.
4. I don't have enough experience or knowledge.
5. It's going to take forever...or longer.

NEW reasons why IT will DEFINITELY work...

1. Any and everyone can find me if I put myself out there to be found. The Internet connects us all.
2. There's absolutely a market for what I do.
3. I really do have something unique to offer.
4. I've been creating all my life this new mixed media is just an extension. And I'm dedicated to learning more and honing my craft. AND

5. My level of accomplishment is directly related to my efforts and my belief in myself....Dam, that was deep. 
You know sometimes my dream can seem so far away but in times like this it feels a little closer. And what if it really is closer, much closer than I ever imagined.

The only way I'll know is if I reach out and grab at it. So I'm gonna go grab at my dream today and I might even get to grab a little piece of cake while I'm at it.


  1. I am with you!!! This post was very inspirational.

    I want to have a company pick my work to be licensed and put on any (and everything) or maybe just some note cards, notebooks, planners, calendars, etc, etc...

    I'm just saying :-)

  2. Amen! This is so inspirational . I can not believe that she has only been doing this for 6 months.

    Basically start putting it out there and you will reap the rewards. Believe you can and you will.

    Very Cool!

  3. the Aha moment ... and the list is on point!

  4. Girl yes, I am with you on that! I recently realized that all along I wasn't afraid to fail, i was afraid to succeed and if I accomplished my dreams then I'd have to actually live up to them... I like what you said: "My level of accomplishment is directly related to my efforts and my belief in myself..." Those are some of the truest words I've heard in my life.

    You go girl, don't be afraid to succeed! I'm rooting for you!