Saint Louis, MO
How’d you get into pancake art?
Dumb luck, mostly.
I met Dan filling in for drums in his band, no clue that pancake art was a thing or that Dan was internet famous. I thought it was awesome, but I never thought, “Man, I’ve gotta get in on that pancake art game,”.
Fast forward to the summer of 2015 and I had talked Dan into going on tour with me, music and pancake art. It was a wild adventure, but Dan had to fly out for a comic-con gig during the tour and miss a show.
With few options available Dan said, “Well, do you wanna learn how to do it?”
“Ummmm… Sure. Why not?” was my over eager reply.
So after a quick crash course in his step-mom’s kitchen I drove to Austin in a blistering thunderstorm and made terrible pancake art and played (hopefully good) music for some awesome folks.
Fast forward to now and I’m jetting all over the world making pancake faces, befuddled to how the heck I fell into this line of work. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but neither do most things in life. Just enjoy.
- The Dancakes Team Reflects on the Past Year (1/1/2020) - 2019 was one of the most fruitful years in Dancakes short history. So much has happened, and is happening that we thought we should get the Dancakes Team to mark some of our highlights from our last revolution around the sun while we barrel forward into the next one at 67,000 mph.
- The Why, How & History of the Dancakes Name (11/12/2019) -
We get a lot of questions about why we use the name “Dancakes”, which is fair, only one of our chef’s jackets has the name “Dan” on it. What usually follows is an abbreviated answer about why we decided to keep the name.
- Comfort is a Trap, Don’t Fall for It (9/18/2019) - Purpose is a welcome curse. A spell cast upon you that gives you a drive and ambition to achieve something. It permeates your thoughts and informs nearly every decision you make. You invest money and time into planting seeds that may never bloom, and if they don’t, you go back and do it all over again.
- How I Met Daniel Drake and Became a Dancakes Artist (7/23/2019) - It was a hot day in Austin, which isn’t saying much. When isn’t it hot in Austin? It would probably be more interesting to start this story with, “It was an inconceivably cold day in Austin,” But alas, truth, no matter how insignificant rues the day...
- Welcome to the NEW Dancakes.com! (7/6/2019) -
The only constant in life is change, and here we are again, the same place but a different destination.
What's the weirdest request you've ever gotten?
Weird is relative. And in this job trying to figure out the “weirdest” request is like trying to figure out what river has the wettest water.
However, I think I might have the answer. In this instance, context is everything.
I was making pancake art at a 5th grade graduation party in 2016, and even though they’re just kids they’re obviously aware of the fact an election is happening that year. They know who the candidates are, but beyond that not much, they’re only 10 years old, politics is still a few years away.
As was the norm for that year, I made both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton pancakes. It was all very benign though, they just wanted to see these people they keep seeing on TV in pancake form. I was happy to oblige.
Then a little kid came up to me, short, red hair, freckles all over… He looked like Howdy Doody, aka, an adorable kid.
He looked at me and said, “Could I get Hillary behind bars?”
All I could think was, “Woah, I wonder where you learned that from.” (And I’m not sure if I’d wanna know)
So, I did my job and made him what he requested. It was quite the challenge to since you have to draw the bars first and then figure out what pieces of the face to show through the empty spaces, which is not easy to say the least.
Are there any things you still struggle with in pancake art?
Not straight on or from the side, but the 3/4 skewed perspective. Doing two point perspective without any guides to help is really challenging for me. I’m always glad when someone requests one though because I get a little better every time!
What's your favorite breakfast restaurant?
There’s a little place on the southside of St. Louis (my home) called “Southwest Diner“. They are by far my favorite breakfast spot anywhere in the world (And I’ve eaten at SO many).
What's the coolest place you've traveled to?
Probably Hong Kong. We got to spend a week just wandering around the city and only had to do any real work one day. I took my camera and got some pretty amazing photos, we saw some absolutely stunning sites and Dan and I went out one night and found a little speakeasy with an open mic/jam and I got to sit in for about an hour on drums with a couple of amazing musicians. It was a pretty magical experience and it really cemented how lucky I am to be part of this pancake circus.
Are your pancakes edible?
Not only are they edible, they’re actually pretty delicious. Not long after I met Dan, and long before I ever tried pancake art I tried one of Dan’s pancakes at a show we were playing at the Heavy Anchor.
I honestly didn’t have high expectations, but they were really, really good. Was it the best pancake I ever had? No. But it was still pretty darn delicious.
Pineapple on pizza?