I have been decorating cakes for 5 years now for a large all natural grocer, and I would like to start doing them for myself. I an awaiting inspection of my kitchen. My question is how should I go about building a portfolio of cake pictures to put on my website? I cannot use the ones I have from my job because they are technically their property. I have done some cakes for friends, but the photos are candid shots at parties. Should I make several dummies to photograph? I feel like any potential customers are going to want to see a lot of pictures. I know I would.
Making dummy cakes is a good idea.
There has been some discussion on CC about who has what rights to pictures of cakes--I think if you took pictures of the cakes you've made for the grocer you could you ask them for permission to use them in your portfolio. You may not even need their permission legally (but I'm not a legal expert) but it would be courteous to get it.
I have thought about that, and I think they would say yes. But, I was not very consistent with taking pictures of the cakes. I never really thought about until pretty recently
Do display cakes. You can cover one with fondant, then switch out some basic decorations, ribbons, etc. That way you can get more than one complete cake out of it.
There are bakeries that are fairly well-known in the bloggy wedding world who have pages and pages of dummy cakes on their websites. You can tell by comparing the tiers and how certain things are the same on certain tiers, but they're moved around in different configurations to make different cakes.