Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Interview: Kaitlin of Whisk Kid

This is Kaitlin, but you may know her as Whisk Kid, the totally rad, awesome food blogger who's known for her amazing creations, her fabulous writing, and her insane talent!

 
In keeping with the interview theme, I was fortunate enough to be able to interview Kaitlin and ask her about everything from her favourite tips to her appearance on Martha Stewart!

Kaitlin is an amazing food blogger and one of my personal inspirations! In fact, she was one of the first food blogs I avidly followed and, if you've seen her blog, it's not hard to understand why. Her photos and food styling are amazing, only surpassed by the stuff she's actually taking pictures of!

For those who are curious, have you seen this or this or this

Yeah, know what I mean?

I also really admire Kaitlin for her cake decorating abilities, more specifically her ability to frost a cake. Having said this, I felt it only appropriate that I seriously try my hand at replicating her masterpiece, coating it with delicious Swiss Meringue Buttercream, and following her amazing tutorial on how to frost a cake.

It really isn't as easy as I thought and I'm not ashamed to say that I underestimated how difficult it would be, especially given that it was only my first time. But, I promise that I did do a crumb coat and it still came out a bit crumby. Thankfully I'm able to distract you from that by cutting out the worst part of the cake and putting a giant, chocolate 'WK' on the top? It's like an illusion...

cake

I was so lucky to be able to interview Kaitlin and learn more about her! Care to take a read?

Interview with Kaitlin from Whisk Kid!


Jordan:
How did Whisk Kid start?

Kaitlin:
I started Whisk Kid after being inspired by blogs like Tartelette and Cannelle et Vanille, which I found through Tastespotting.  Their work was (and is) so amazing that they made me really want to learn how to use a camera properly.  After months of photographing food for myself, I decided that I wanted to share, the pictures, recipes and stories with other people.  I was so happy to have a place to express myself freely.

Jordan:
Did you have any goals for your blog when you first started? Was there anything in particular that you were hoping to get out of it?

Kaitlin:
I want to learn and improve.  I want to become a better photographer, a better writer, and a better cook/baker, and while I'm working on it I want to learn as much as I can about all three subjects.  It makes me really happy to have a trail to look back on so I can see where I started.

Jordan:
Your recipes are so eclectic and different. I never know what to expect from one of your posts. Where does your inspiration from a recipe come from?

Kaitlin:
Thanks!  I usually get my inspiration from other blogs, and if not there: my friends.  I don't like to make things that people won't eat, so I ask them what they want and go from there.  I'm willing to try just about anything too, even if I have no idea what I'm doing.  Actually, that's usually when I have the most fun - I loved learning to make things like creme anglaise (for ice cream) and meringue buttercreams because I knew I would learn a lot in the process.  Anyway, when it comes to multiple component recipes, I usually pick one thing to start with (like a flavor for cake) and then pick my friend's brains or surf the web for accompaniments.  Putting it all together is a lot of fun and I'm always excited to see how things will turn out!

Jordan:
Do you a favourite thing that you like to bake over anything else?

Kaitlin:
Layer cakes!  I am not the biggest fan of eating cake (weird, right?) but I love baking the cakes, trimming them, stacking them and then frosting them.  It's so therapeutic, and there are SO many possibilities...  Cakes are awesome!

Jordan:
What are a few of your favourite food blogs and what is it about each of them that you particularly like?

Kaitlin:
There are SO many blogs that I love!  I don't even know where to start. Well, in no particular order: I've been very inspired by Sweetapolita recently.  Her blog is relatively new, but she certainly knows what she's doing in the kitchen and takes gorgeous photos!  I love her recipes.  Her blog makes me happy!

I also really like BraveTart because Stella posts the coolest recipes, is incredibly knowledgeable and is very funny.  I think of all the blogs I read, BraveTart is the one that I've baked the most things from.

Mowielicious is incredible because of the photos and how approachable the recipes are.  I'm always excited whenever there's an update.

Julie from Willow Bird Baking posts delicious-looking food and shares the greatest stories.  Her blog is very personal, which I love.

Culinary Concoctions by Peabody is another one with tasty recipes and great stories.  I like that one because the author is very confident and never apologetic for posting whatever she wants.  She never censors herself, which makes for some hilarious stories!

Amanda from I Am Baker is INSANELY talented in all forms of baking.  She's so imaginative and creative.  She's such an inspiration to me...  I don't know how she comes up with all of her incredible ideas.  She's also very generous, which I love.

Desserts for Breakfast has AMAZING photos and recipes.  I love how involved so many of her recipes are, and actually plan on making one of her cakes for my birthday this year!

What Katie Ate is a joy to read, too.  It's easy to tell that the author is incredibly passionate about her work, and she's so very talented at what she does.  The recipes, photos and styling are impeccable.

I love Confessions of a Cookbook Queen because I never know what to expect.  Kristan makes beautiful and creative treats, and she always makes me laugh.  Her blog is full of happiness!

And last, but certainly not least, I LOVE The Spinning Plate.  The recipes and photos are wonderful, but what I love most is the author's writing style.  I hope to someday be able to write with as much grace and beauty as she does...  She makes it seem so effortless!

Jordan:
Your blog incorporates a stong mix of food, photography, and writing. What would you say is your favourite part?

Kaitlin:
Man, you ask a lot of difficult questions!  I think, if I had to choose, I would say that my favorite part is the baking.  I can bake for days on end without any trouble because I've never had "baker's block" the way I've had similar troubles with photography and writing.  It always feels natural to pick up my measuring cups and a whisk!

Jordan:
You were recently on Martha Stewart. Can you tell me all about that experience? How did the opportunity come about?

Kaitlin:
Goodness - that was crazy!  I still can't believe that happened.  One of the women who works at the show (I believe she's a producer) left a comment on the blog and asked me to e-mail her.  At first I thought it was a joke.  Of course, I couldn't understand why anyone would do that, but it was just so unbelievable...  Anyway, I sent her a message and she asked me for my phone number because she wanted to talk in the near future.  I didn't get a call that day, so I assumed she had changed her mind, but the next day my phone started buzzing while I was in class, and I knew it had to be the call.  It took so much willpower for me to wait until class was over to call back!  As soon as my prof said we were dismissed, I ran out the door and redialed the number, and she gave me an interview of sorts as I walked home.  I was so excited and kept laughing - everyone I passed was giving me weird looks!  At the end of the call she told me that there was a very good possibility that they would like me to be on the show, but she had to get everything confirmed there before she could give me a yes or a no...  A little over a week later I was flying out to New York with my mom, still in complete and utter disbelief!

Jordan:
That's crazy! And what was it like once you got there?

Kaitlin:
It was incredible.  I had no idea what to expect, but everything went so well thanks to ther super kind staff!  My mom and I were directed to a dressing room when we arrived at the studio, and then two women did my hair and makeup.  It was cool, but very strange to be taken care of like that!  After I was "camera ready," I ran through the segment one time with the producer and returned to the dressing room where my mom and I hung out until she had to leave to sit in the audience.  I stayed in the dressing room while they were filming the show (live!) and a couple members of the staff came in to talk with me while we waited, which was SO cool!  They gave me all sorts of advice about where to go in New York and what to eat/see/do and we talked about food and their jobs and just...  I don't know.  All I can say was that it was an amazing feeling to be talking to all of them like that.  I was on top of the world!  Anyway, my segment came up much faster than I expected it to. When it was time to go, the people I was chatting with led me on stage for filming and I was finally able to meet the incredible Ms. Stewart.  We talked for a few moments during the commercial break, then started filming the segment.

Jordan:
And what was Martha like in person?

Kaitlin:
It really was incredible.  Like I said - I still can't believe it!  She was very nice, but I didn't have a whole lot of time to talk to her, unfortunately.  She was busy preparing for the next segment during the one break I had on set, so she went to one side and I went to the other. I'm so happy and lucky to have met her though, even if I didn't get to talk to her much.  Oh, and the producers told me afterward that she liked me, which was such a good feeling!

Jordan:
How nervous were you in front of the cameras?

Kaitlin:
Actually, I know it probably sounds strange, but I only got nervous for a few seconds in the middle of fliming.  I couldn't immediately locate something on the table that I knew I'd be talking about soon, so I hesitated a little while I tried to figure things out. I spotted it a few seconds later though, and I kept going.  There are two reasons why I think I wasn't nervous.  The biggest one is that it just didn't seem real, so I wasn't afraid.  The second one is that I've been involved in theater in the past, so to me it was just like being on stage.  It was really fun!

Jordan:
Finally, do you have any advice for new food bloggers out there or those people who are thinking about starting a food blog?

Kaitlin:
I would say it's very important to just be true to yourself.  Post what's in your heart - not what you think will make you popular.  Also, I think it helps a lot to update consistently. Try to aim for a certain amount of posts per week or month, but don't try to post so frequently that the quality of your work suffers.  That will only make you sad!  Also, utilize things like Twitter and Facebook to get in touch with other bloggers.  It's fun to meet and interact with the people behind the blogs, and it's really something that you shouldn't miss out on!


Thanks for reading! If you have a question for Kaitlin, don't hesitate to post it below and hopefully she can answer it for you!


Until next time, happy baking!


-Jordan

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6 comments:

  1. Your cake looks so yummy! I can't believe you made/photographed it so quickly! Amazing!

    Thanks so much for all the super kind stuff you said. You're too kind! And thank you, too, for interviewing me :D

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  2. What a fantastic interview! LOVE Whisk Kid and sweet Kaitlin :)

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  3. LOVELOVELOVE getting to know Kaitlin better... she is just a DELIGHT!!! So smart and talented and creative and fun! Great interview!

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  4. Love the interview and LOVE Kaitlin!! :)

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  5. What a fabulous interview!! Kaitlin's blog is so amazing, I love it because she writes each post almost like a diary entry, posts so incredibly lucid, providing vivid snapshots of her life. I get pretty sick of reading about food sometimes, it being my 9 to 5, so I know I can always read something unexpected and refreshing on Whisk Kid.

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  6. I love all these interviews! It's great to see people and their many talents and what inspires them.

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I love you all for reading! Your support means everything!

If you have any questions regarding recipes, posts, or use of photographs, whip up some buttercream, then send me an e-mail: kitchenkarate(AT)gmail(DOT)com. You shouldn't have to wait too long for a reply. I'm a computer fiend!

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