Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld - Contest details

Well. The Leviathan contest - is almost closed! Enter to win now... :) for the draw for the Steampunk'd book cover I made. The draw is Oct 30th. The contest is open to Canadians - and this is a great prize. Scott has signed the copy of the book that goes with the cover - so if you are a Big Fan this is a fantastic way to WIN! :D

I got to read an Advanced Readers copy of Leviathan... which is really a fabulous Steampunk novel. I suspect it is YA - but as an adult I found it fantastic. Good solid story, interesting concept (mechanical vs a "natural machine"), and well.. I'm going to buy another copy (so i have the new cover). It allowed me to get a feel for the design - and to get the measurements as well so the book cover could be easily removed if the winner wants.

It features a really nice leather and faux-suede cover. I chose to use the faux since it is actually a lot sturdier than real suede and has an awesome feel to it. The "artwork" on it is set on a leather background - a dark near-black chocolate leather.

The main part of the book covering has a pocket watch - Swiss - dated pre-1920. I chose that particular watch face because it is around the date of the book was set. There is a bit of an abstract selection of gears at the very center. Below that a few gears flow down into a large selection of gears taken from a few different pocket watches. The larger gears are winding wheels - the nicest of which has a machined patterning called Damaskeening in it that makes it shine. That particular gear is surrounded by a Date Wheel... that is taken though from a men's wrist watch. I created a "Frame" around the leather with these wonderful brass corners that have been carefully aged to give it the look of green patina as if it were copper. The green was matched to compliment the hue of the suede.

The nicest touch that I'm quite happy with is a Steampunk Bee near the bottom of the design. This silver-plated bee has had some added elements - little bits of gears that were added to the wings, and a few extra details. I plan on making a few steampunk necklaces based around this design that will go up on my ClockworkZero site. I've only though got a very, very few of the bees though so it looks like it will be another limited edition. sigh.

I found it quite interesting the role that bees played in the book - and actually they are one of my favorite elements as well. Bees and Gears and STeampunk jewelry oh my! The illustrations by Keith Thompson are really amazing. The one with the pocketwatch was part of my inspiration. I'm currently working on 2 different bee necklaces.

Its too bad I couldn't give you all a better Heads Up on the contest. Sorry about that! I'm going to advertise the contest now...
but even if you don't win do buy the book!
I know I'll be anxiously waiting for the next one.
Do head over to and enter the contest!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Steampunk Telescope necklaces and a craft show in Toronto

I've done a lot of new work for the Craft Show tomorrow: 557 Queen Street West in Toronto - its the Underground Craft Show. It is one of the 2 shows I've signed up to do.

so for the Underground Craft show I've been making and making and making stuff. Steampunk jewlery. Cyberpunk Jewelry. Geek jewelry. Lots of jewelry but almost no sculptures. No time. I am thrilled will a lot of it. If people come to the show tomorrow I suspect they will see some of the best work I've done - and some of the most unique. Still will the rain and crap weather I really worry. Maybe no one will show. In which case I'll have work to photograph and place on etsy.

A few pieces are up there now - but these of course may sell tomorrow... My new Favorite: a mini steampunk telescope necklace! and of course the Steampunk Russian Pilot necklace/brooch (it can be both).

I'm really thrilled though that my beetle wing necklace sold - the 5 wings. It has probably more hearts then almost anything else. Over 30 I think. I'll be working today on a 2nd one too.

But.. this craft show thing stresses me out. I've done so few - and they always go well - but i fret. Plus I worry mostly about money. Its the independent artist dilemna. Do I sell online or do shows? Do i try and get into shops? Because the work takes so long to make, and its just me sitting here in my chilly room full of watch parts, machines, gears, glass and remains - it means I'm a one woman shop. I honestly don't know how people manage to keep 100 items in their stores on etsy.

And, this has been a learning curve! I never realized how competitive the Craft Show market is in Toronto - and between now and christmas I've got only 2 small shows lined up. Part of the reason is that I didn't know that 10,000 jewelers would apply and secondly, to be honest, it was partly cash. I needed to pay for the tables - and had a serious cash crunch due to some confusion with my "pay". (yes there are quotes there). So rather then sign up with bouncing cheques I didn't sign up at all. Now of course I have the cash - but there is nary an opening in sight. sigh. Next year I'll be better!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Steampunk & Cyberpunk style for TV Costuming!

I had a lady approach me to ask if I could design some jewelry for a "cyberpunk" styled TV Commercial! oh yes. yes i can :D Could I get it to LA by Thursday? Could I do it on a budget? Hella yeah! Lucky for me I like a challenge - and getting a deadline done. I had 2 necklaces (and a bracelet) completed in 24hrs.. and shipped. Shipping though was expensive - but thank gods I got the cash back. $50+ but it was there in Thursday morning (shipped Tuesday pm).

Whats the commerical about??? ... I am sworn to keep it a secret! Something cyberpunk.

Evidently the commerical is a Big Deal. Of course, who knows - it might not even show on the final cut, or it might just be itty-bitty on a person in the background. but... Does it matter? Not really.

I know my work will look so good as costuming. Seriously. I can picture someone with a few layers of it on. The Vacuum Tubes hanging down - some of the bigger ones that are very sexual, very odd and Full of Mysterious things. Those look fantastic on men. Maybe some of the smaller ones for a woman. The funny thing is that no one really recognizes them much any more. They look like capsules.