The Peppermint Plains was created for CMN's third event of the 2015 season, Red & White. I was approached to work on a piece that would tie in with the organization's first themed concert. At first, I thought, "What's red and white? The White Stripes?" then I remembered their distinctive peppermint swirl bass drum. "What if I made a landscape out of peppermint candies?"
Terrible (but ambitious) concept sketches emerged:
I began the hunt for a Christmas staple in the middle of Spring. I was genuinely stunned by the lack of traditional peppermint candies like circular after dinner mints, candy canes, or sticks. The majority of the materials were purchased online, with the exception of the base, rocket, and spaceman.
Undeterred, I began constructing a castle made from the swirled peppermints... which promptly slid apart and became a gooey mess. It turned out to be a blessing in disguise because I really liked the candy cane forest with the peppermint road. When I saw it in the viewfinder, it immediately took me back to childhood games of Candy Land with my sister.
In the very back is a mountain range made of pink cotton candy... this was a happy accident, because those "mountains" were actually supposed to be a cotton candy sky, which melted under studio lights.
Immediately after the shoot, I swore I'd never work with candy or real food again... but I keep coming back to this idea with gumdrops...