Tuesday, August 30, 2011

the ultimate space crystal: Diamond Planet

This week it was announced that a diamond planet has been discovered in our very own galaxy. The planet, believed to be the remnants of a star, is comprised mainly of very dense carbon. It's basically the perfect conditions for diamond formation, and astronomers believe that planet is mostly crystalline. Read more at Reuters.com.

I hope one day humans get to travel to and explore the diamond planet. Until then, I'm going to be inspired and draw pictures. I kind of want to write a story about it now.

artworks from the past: Painting and Drawing

color study, tempera on paper

color study, tempera on paper

self portrait, oil on plywood

Freaks, 2008 

self portrait study

Watchers, 2008

Thursday, August 25, 2011

artworks from the past: Sculpture

For the next two weeks, Scepter Gem will be taking a short break as I work on other projects. So I figured I would share some of my old work, which I recently stumbled upon when I remembered my DeviantArt account still existed!

Cradle, 2007 | ceramic

Watcher I, 2008 | ceramic

Tornado, Glacier, Geography, 2007 | pins made from Britannia metal 

Untitled, 2006 | tapestry loom

Apple, 2007 | latex, mixed media

Apple, which is a latex cast of a miniature clay model of my head attached to a fake apple, was used as a puppet in the following video.

And I couldn't leave out the best of all (aka most embarrassing of all), the sculptural costume I made for my fibers class back in my days at UArts in Philadelphia. It's made up of only string, tape, and newspaper. Take that Lady Gaga!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Today's Gems: Sandstone

sparkling sandstone ring and necklace

Sandstone is the second  most common sedimentary rock and consists of two parts: a grain component of quartz, feldspar, and lithic fragments; and the space between the grains which fills with silica or calcium carbonate during the lithification process.

Rocks called Moqui Marbles, named after the Moqui Indians of the western United States where these are commonly found, are compacted balls of sandstone encased in iron compounds. Geologists have several theories about how the stones are formed, some believe they are meteoric or even extraterrestrial in origin. The baseball shaped stones, sometimes referred to as "Shaman Stones," were used by Native American shamans for vision quests and other types of out-of-body journeys. They are still used by contemporary practitioners to release emotional blocks and stimulate Chi energy throughout the body.

Moqui Marbles (via canyoneeringusa.com)

Because sandstone is very resistant to erosion, it makes for a very durable building material. The Treasury building of Petra, modern day Jordan, was carved directly into the rock. It dates from the 4th century BC and still stands today. Other notable sandstone carvings are the temples of Abu Simbel, Egypt, built by Rameses II and carved out of a cliff on the west bank of the Nile.

The Treasury of Petra (via Google Images)

The Painted Desert in Arizona is a great example of cross bedding in the sedimentary rock. This occurs when strong forces of wind or water deposit the rock at a high velocity. It's easy to imagine the sandstone being swept and shaped over the Earth's surface.

The Painted Desert in Arizona (via britannica.com)
References: Smithsonian Rock and Gem by Ronald Louis Bonewitz; Gems of Wisdom, Gems of Power by Teresa Kennedy

Read related posts: Today's Gems

Saturday, August 20, 2011


My new friend Kyle Nolan sent me his Brain Dead Phylum comics in a beautifully printed envelope. And to my surprise, he included some totally awesome Scepter Gem fan art!! It really made my day!

The alien creature in the inside cover of issue 2 creeped me out and made me laugh at the same time.

Kyle's drawings are totally awesome. There is so much texture and line, it's really pleasing to look at. His comics are also really funny, so I suggest you check them out.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Philly Alternative Comic Con

I'm at P.A.C.C. right now. There's a lot of cool art going on. Here are some Scepter Gem trading cards I've been working on. They are glitterful.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Crystal and Gem Blogs

In my everlasting internet searches for crystals and minerals, I've come across some really great gem and geology blogs. Here are a few of my favorites.

This blog provides a brief description and history of each mineral, as well as metaphysical characteristics and uses.

Lots of gorgeous pictures of raw crystals, geological wonders, and crystals in jewelry. The blogger answers readers questions and also has an informative section About: Crystals - Meanings & Facts.

This blogger posts a lot of rare and unusual photos of minerals.

Geology Rocks
To quote their about section: This blog is about all things geology. Landmarks, minerals, sedimentary deposition, pretty pictures, and humor all fall into this category.

In Love With Geosciences
Described as: Mineralogy. Petrology. Paleontology. Volcanology. Glaciology. Seismology. Structural Geology. Sedimentology. Speleology. Stratigraphy. Astrogeology. Evolution. Those last two are my favorite!

Some other notable science blogs:
Scientific Illustration
Fresh Photons
Fuck Yeah Volcanoes
American Museum of Natural History
National Geographic Daily

Or just check out what's in Tumblr's science spotlight here.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Chill Alien

Here's a quick little story about a Chill Alien. I kind of like this little guy. I might just make him his own little series of one-page comics. I find that coming up with short stories is a really good exercise for me because I tend to want to elaborate on everything, and story ideas turn into huge hypothetical projects that I don't really have time for.