Inspiration is a funny thing, a fleeting, combustible, goosebumps-inducing funny thing. Oddly enough, cakes rarely inspire me.  Most often for me, inspiration comes from other art forms: paintings, fashion, sculpture, home and textile design.  And, of course, people and their stories always light a creative spark.

A painting, a person and a story inspired this cake.  

A painting

A soft, gauzy impression of a spring bouquet, the painting boasts the most restful shades of blue and lavender, green and white.  The sweetest little nest houses tiny blue eggs.  The painting holds everything I love—gorgeous flowers, saturated colors, nature at its most pure.

a person

A woman who wears many hats, Tracy is a mother, a grandmother, a wife, a nature-lover, a Mardi Gras queen, just to name a few.  She is also, at her core, an artist.  In the last few years, she has devoted her life to her art, progressing to the point that she lived as a full-time artist, having her pieces for sale in a Royal Street gallery and being solidly booked as a live event painter. Another of her paintings hangs in my dining room, and I say a prayer for her each time I pass it.

a story

The story that brings the painting and the person together involves a long-awaited trip to France, to paint where Monet painted, to visit the Louvre, to be immersed in thousands of years of art.  But what followed no one could have predicted.  A seizure.  Days in a coma in a foreign country. A long journey home to the most unexpected diagnosis.  Brain cancer.  Radiation.  Chemotherapy.  Surgery.  Not the results anyone wanted or expected.  Repeat.

What is most inspirational is Tracy’s attitude through it all.  She steps out in faith everyday.  She wants to help others.  She loves her family with everything she’s got.  She sparks her own joy out on the water, fishing as often as she feels up to it.  And she creates, a process she does not take for granted, embracing the gift she could have lost, sending beauty out into the world.

So this is my rendering of the beautiful painting by @tracywplaisance in cake form, my ode to her and my prayer for her. I know she would welcome your prayers and positive thoughts.

To see more of Tracy’s work, visit

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