The Start of Something New: An Introduction
I often think about when and how I started as a cake artist. I was 12 years old, not proving anything to anyone. I still admire how much I wanted to become a better baker, cake decorator, and artist in general. I'd obsessively watch Youtube tutorials and Craftsy classes on my bus ride home from school. And would continue watching for hours after finishing my homework. Why? I'm honestly not fully sure. Reflecting, I think it had to do with my growing passion for 3D art, or because my Nana use to bake or maybe my addictive personality. Could it be something else? Perhaps.
I have been making cakes for almost 7 years now, which is a fact that is weird to digest. I really find it unbelievable that I've been practicing for almost a decade and can now call myself a professional. I'm so grateful and in awe of the opportunities that have come with being "that kid who makes cakes."
In 2019, I had three back-to-back-to-back television appearances on the Food Network, in between being a full time student at the University of Central Florida and working part-time at The Sweet Chalet Shoppe. I was the youngest competitor to compete on all three shows (Halloween Wars, Holiday Wars, & Food Network Challenge), and I honestly felt like I had to work three times harder to prove to the producers and my teammates that I wasn't just an adolescent novelty. They were still surreal and dream like experiences nonetheless. After all, it was shows like Halloween Wars and Food Network Challenge that ignited my passion for the art. The call for Food Network Challenge really felt like a full circle moment or maybe even the law of attraction working its magic.
Spoiler alert, I was also the youngest competitor to not win on all three. It was torture watching myself and my words edited out of place. While being on national television three times in a single year is the biggest accomplishment I have on my resume, it feels weird looking back on the experiences. The experiences were stressful, gratifying in terms of exposure, but you all don't know me or what I can do based on what you saw on those shows. With this in mind, I want to introduce myself officially:
I'm Jarid. I'm 19 years old and I'm an artist who started as a cake decorator at the age of 12 years old. I consider myself an introverted extrovert who uses cooking, baking, and art as a distraction from my anxiety about everything and nothing. I curse too much. I say stupid and out of context words like "gas", "zoot", "lit", and "cap". I'm majoring in advertising and public relations because I think it'll help me with positioning myself as a profitable brand, but my brother is adamant about how the degree I'm pursuing is not as important as I make it (and sometimes I agree with him). At 15, I began to teach the art of cake decorating to adults across the country. I continue to teach as an outlet to give back to the community that gave so much to me and to put a little extra cash in my pocket (no shame in the grind). I also find it really gratifying and I am pretty good at it. Throughout my career as a cake artist, I balanced school with the career I built for myself. Now, as a vacationing college student, I have the time and desire to expand my brand, my following, and my passion for education.
I do not know exactly what this blog will turn into, but I hope that I can use this platform as a way to help people on their journeys as I continue on my own.
I look forward to sharing with you, inspiring you, and becoming a community of like-minded creatives that can be comforted knowing there are other weirdos out there just like you. I don't want to just be a cake artist anymore, or "that kid who makes cakes" or a "19-year-old cake wunderkind". I just want to be an unedited, unfiltered version of myself.
This could all be for nothing. Just an uninteresting platform for my ramblings, recipes (savory and sweet), and unsolicited advice, but I hope and think you'll care as much as I do.
Welcome and much love,
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