Should I Enter A Decorating Competition?
It’s a common question that a lot of people will quickly answer “no” to, we wondered what the benefits of entering a cake decorating competition were, so we asked Michelle Green from The Business of Baking to investigate.
Every time I go to the Royal Melbourne Show, I care way more about the cake decorating competitions than I do about the prize winning chickens or the fairy floss. I race into the halls so I can see the creations people have made, and admire the 30 different plates of sponge, wondering how on earth the judges decide between them. There is just something wonderfully appealing about looking at competition cakes. You get to see beautiful things, cheer on the kids’ entries, and marvel at the fact that baking fruit cake is still a competitive sport. Australia has a very long tradition of cake competitions, which take place everywhere from the country show held at the Scout Hall to the city shows held at show grounds. These days the opportunities to compete have grown as cake shows and clubs have become more popular.
Other than the opportunity to win some amazing prizes, there are a few other good reasons to enter competitions. Firstly, you get the opportunity to try techniques
you’ve been interested in but you might not have had the chance to make. You get the creative space to think big and do things which are out of the realm of your normal work. You can also photograph your competition pieces and use them as part of your portfolio.
Competitions are a great way to raise your profile because even if you don’t come home with the gold, your work will be seen and admired by a wider audience. I’ve become aware of many decorator’s work just because people have shared their competition entries via social media.
You should see entering competitions as an opportunity to stretch yourself and your skills, get some wider exposure, and do the cake YOU want to do instead of the one you’ve been asked for. Rather than try to meet the needs of your niece or customer, satisfy your inner artist by creating the cakes which appear in your head but which haven’t had the chance to make it into real life. Coming home with a prize or award is nice, but actually entering in the first place can be immensely satisfying.
This post is sponsored by Mounties and the Icing on the Cake Challenge supporting Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea and The Cancer Council.