CELEBRATING CAKEOGRAPHY – THE ART OF CAPTURING CAKE
For many years we have wanted to shine a spotlight on the special art of capturing cake, or, as we like to call it, cakeography. This year, we are thrilled to introduce a new category, the Tiptree Cake Award, with our new partner, Tiptree. Tiptree have been making quality preserves since 1885 and are Royal Warrant holders. They grow a wide range of traditional English fruits at their farm in Essex, England and use them to make conserves, condiments, and other treats, like cake!
For our latest blog, we caught up with Tiptree and Caroline Kenyon, Founder of the Awards, to talk all things cake and photography.
What does cake mean to Tiptree?
Cake is hugely important to us at Tiptree as many of our products have been used for baking for many decades. Our jams are used in many classics such as Victoria Sponges, Jam Tarts, Loaf Cakes and Doughnuts, as well as some of our newer products being used in delights such as Passionfruit Curd Pavlova, and Salted Caramel Spread Cheesecake. We enjoy being part of the ‘baking community’ where people share photos of their masterpieces with us on social media, these are crafted with love and care and attention and always make us very hungry!
Our sister company Tiptree Patisserie make lots of delicious cakes and our 10 Tiptree Tea Rooms across East Anglia, serve cakes for people to enjoy happy moments with loved ones.
We like to share a cup of tea and a scone with jam and cream with visitors to Tiptree, it is always a treat to chat with friends over cake. As Daren McGrath, Managing Director of Tiptree Patisserie says “A party without cake is just a meeting”.
What are your favourite cake memories at Tiptree?
Cakes are usually present at special moments at Tiptree. We have enjoyed celebration cakes to mark special occasions such as the late Queen Elizabeth II’s 90th birthday and also the Platinum Jubilee.
In April 2022, we organised a staff bake sale to raise money for the International Rescue Committee, Ukraine appeal (the only rule was to not use any nuts as we are a nut free factory.) We were super impressed with all of the delicious bakes that staff brought in, it was a great day, enjoying tasty treats and raising money for charity.
Our favourite day of the year, National Cream Tea Day, was created when we teamed up with our friends Roddas, who make lovely Cornish Clotted Cream, and set up the Cream tea Society. Each year, the last Friday in June is dedicated to scones, jam and cream and raising money for local charities, our favourite memories include debating the age old jam or cream first dilemma with friends on Twitter, and the staff in our Tiptree Tea Rooms dressing up and serving specially created scones, this day is always special.
What will Tiptree be looking for in the cake pictures?
We will be looking for a striking image which draws us in and makes us want to see how delicious it tastes.
What does cake mean to you, Caroline?
For me, cake is the most joyful and also the most comforting of foods. It’s central to so many different kinds of celebrations - I think I can remember nearly every birthday cake my mother made for me in my childhood, and I can certainly remember the ones I made - badly - for my son’s birthday parties. And then, at times of feeling down, what could be more consoling than to hear the words from a kindly voice, Would you like some cake..? The world is immediately a better place.
Tell us about cake photography you love, Caroline.
I was asked to choose three of my favourite cake images from the PLFPOTY archive - what a painful choice to make out of so many glorious images. Here goes.
By Marina Spironetti, this image of children waiting hopefully by the cake table really touches me. It reminds me of my step-daughter’s 21st birthday when my 4 year-old goddaughter waited, like a little sentry, by the platter of 100 pink fairy cakes for an hour, while we tried to get the birthday girl away from her partying friends. The image captures their fascination, their lip-licking anticipation, that classic children’s boredom at a grown up party where the only bright point is the prospect of cake.
By CHS Creative, what a fabulous explosion of colour and deliciousness in this picture. Wherever you look, there is fun, exuberance and gorgeous things to eat. The sparkler is the perfect adornment. It says pleasure, indulgence, celebration all at once.
By Brendan McNeill, this image is touching, startling and joyful at the same time. There is some eccentricity in sharing your slice of cake with a budgerigar. Does the man live alone? He is the only human being in shot, just one slice of cake on a plate. But so much love between him and his feathered friend.
What do you think makes a great piece of cakeography, Caroline?
It rather depends whether there are people in shot or not. If there are, I want to see the emotion, the interaction with the cake, what is the occasion, how is it making them feel? If not, I want to see either exquisite handiwork, beautiful styling, colour, lusciousness, or, a home-made messy cake full of love and enthusiasm but perhaps slightly less skill. The first is the kind of cake I wish I could make, the second is what I do make!
Looking for some inspiration? Take a look at the very best cake images from the Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year archive.
Find out more about the Tiptree Cake Award here.
- How to stand out in the shortlist by Caroline Kenyon January 4, 2024
- Pink Lady® Food Photographer of the Year changed my life January 2, 2024
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