Steampunk inspiration and resources

Steampunk Alchemy

“Time” Altered Canvas is my Favorite Steampunk Alchemy Illustration

As I suspected, right when I got firmly back into my art-making mindset I had to pack up all my tools, paper and adornments and ship them back the US. There isn’t a lot of downtime on an archeaogical project, so I have to put my creativity on the shelf again for a bit. This is the last of my pieces for the upcoming Steampunk Alchemy book. I actually finished this one back in May, but I wanted to space out posting the various illustrations.

"Time" Altered CanvasThe perfume recipe it will accompany is called “Time.” Of course, when thinking about Steampunk artwork and time I immediately thought of a clock, but I didn’t want to go so totally literal and cover the canvas with clock faces and hands. I had been toying with the idea of using the four corners to show the lifecycle of a flower, but then the Mister suggested a pendulum and I loved the idea. I have always been a fan of the early Impressionists who tried to capture motion, so this is a nod both to them and the idea of using a lifecycle to express “Time”. I also chose sepia-tones to give it an old-timey feel.

The image above is more or less the original piece with only the contrast upped, but the real illustration as it appears in the book will likely be enhanced further through various digital effects.

See my other Steampunk Alchemy illustrations: “Lighter than Air“, “Magic“, and “Brass”

“Magic” 3D Top Hat Illustration for Steampunk Alchemy

Hello friends! I have just finished my second illustration for my upcoming project with Penny Blake. Steampunk Alchemy will be a how-to book about making your own perfumes and lotions, with an alchemical steampunk twist of course! This is my contribution for the perfume called “Magic.” If you missed the first illustration for “Light than Air”, you can see it here.

I decided to go with a magician theme rather than a witch, wizard or fairy because of the rise of magically inclined performers during the steam era. If you want to learn more you can check out my Steampunk Sourcebook for The Illusionist, which features a Steampunk magician gallery.

Magic edited

When you see it straight on in a photo, it may not be quite as obvious that the hat and the magic bits (which were salvaged laser cut wood scraps I bought at Weekend at the Asylum and painted) are coming out of the canvas and toward the viewer, so here a couple pics that are less polished and meant to show you a bit more about how it works.


May I Present “Lighter Than Air”

Even though I am living more or less out of a suitcase right now I couldn’t bear to leave all my art supplies behind. It’s a good thing I didn’t because I have been asked by my writer friend, Penny Blake, to collaborate on a new book called Steampunk Alchemy. I am doing four of the illustrations, as well as contributing some fiction vignettes. The book is all about making “potions” like perfume and lotions out of all natural materials and with a Steampunk twist.

This is the first of my illustrations for the book, which will be made available during the Kickstarter campaign running sometime this fall. Stay tuned for details, but for now, I hope you enjoy this newest assemblage. I tried something a bit more complex with the 3D paper balloon in the center and I am very pleased with the lattice-like effect. I can’t wait to try it out again when I am reunited with my die-cutting machine in August. This time I cut everything out by hand, but I am sure I can make it even more interesting and complex by designing the shapes on the computer first.

"Lighter Than Air" front "Lighter Than Air" side