Illustration Friday: People

Wow! After a few years hiatus (too busy building a shop), here’s my entry for Illustration Friday’s People.

Lisa Stewart - Self Portrait

It’s a self portrait highlighting my calligraphic approach to illustration.




We’ve begun a new adventure the summer: A Steampunk Emporium!

Because I had so much fun inventing Mercury’s Wings, I wanted to find a way to enjoy steampunk everyday.

Running a brick & mortar, exhibiting in the typical juried craft shows, and crafting custom pieces for customers, I found it tough to carve out some time to walk any of the ‘con’ shows. While we had a local one in Raleigh, it seemed rather cost prohibitive to just walk one without participating in any of the extra-curricular activities.

Can’t an artist just get a glimpse of the vendors market environment without having to spend 2 arms and a leg? Geez.

After much pestering and 2 years later, I found an ‘in’ to exhibit last minute at Contemporal, the SE Region’s answer to Steampunk Con. Finally!

Our methodology for creating work is when we are juried into a show and anticipate our type of customer (read: demographic, theme) then that is when we create the work. It’s just the two of us. We can’t read into the future as to what customers are going to  want, so we build one of a kind (OOAK) or small quantities (read: 3) to help round out our collections.

What does this mean? We only had 6 days to craft steampunk type gear when we got the last minute invite. Plus, a piece of our equipment decided to fail on us, causing us to stop production for 2 days. OMFG. So, we punt. We re-prioritize our collection and decide how we’re going to spin the work that we have.

On the flip side, we realized we already had a tremendous amount of steampunk work embedded into our product line. For me, becoming engrossed into the Steampunk world, it isn’t about applying a drawing filled with gears and then slapping it onto every damn thing I can find. In the true sense, it’s about re-inventing a 3-dimensional item that is truly unique based on found objects and scraps of pieces remaining in the workshop to put to good use. I know this but just haven’t carved the time to do this -until now.


Steampunk for the Straights

Today, we have been delighted with strong encouragement from our customers to do more. I thought the interest would be a slow drip, but instead, it has been the inverse. I’m thrilled that I can serve the Steampunk World with my craft.

The work that we’re creating is a true collaboration with our customers -and I’m thrilled. We get requests to craft things out of the ordinary. We are trying to keep up with customer demand and admittedly, some projects are easier to do than others. All I ask is that when you suggest something, I may already have a project that can be replicated into that ‘thing’ that you request. Otherwise, it may take weeks or months before I can get to the project due to time constraints, prototyping, and other unactualized events that may occur (read: life).

Meanwhile, I am creating pieces for the Straights (those of you who don’t know what Steampunk is) or the Steamers who love it but need a quiet piece to wear to work that serves as a subtle reminder that they’re individuals.

Below, you’ll find our Steampunk Web site and I’m going the cheater’s route for a short while by posting my products on ETSY. If you have any suggestions, please send me a note thru my web site or convo thru ETSY -I’ll be overjoyed to hear from you.


Thanks for cruising along with us on this new and unique crafts style. I’m just heartened that I can continue creating special work for you as I evolve into new and wondrous areas.

More Ways to Connect
Oh! You can also follow us on

As fellow Steamers Say: Goggles on!
Stewie (er, Lisa)

Tour: Italy

Tour: Italy

Chloé shirts blouse
$735 –

Poncho, kurz, Strick, Metallic
$83 –

MOTHER flare jeans
$350 –

Rag Bone hat

Wine glass
$36 –

Mercury in Retrograde

I know you’ve heard the phrase, “Mercury is in retrograde -again,” yes?

Well, I didn’t know that damn event could eat weeks at a time –a whole month! So as we close February, the last day of retrograde is today. Thank Goddess.

I’m not one who takes stock in astrology. It was always fun to check my daily activities in the newspaper one day later. Also, if ever I thought that Chinese Zodiac animal had any good influence in one’s life, I will attest that it doesn’t. Last year was year of the Snake (I am year of the snake) and it was horrific. Once the year turned, it was as though a weight lifted and opportunities began to reveal themselves ten-fold.

However, I do believe in power of the planets. :) If the moon can persuade the tides, what more can we look forward to?

Back to Mercurial Mercury
So, I just looked up the calendar on the Farmer’s Almanac and they give a pretty clear explanation of this trickster’s exploits. Recognized as a trickster and prone to misbehavior, his cunning will form an illusion amongst the planets -making them seem as though they’re moving backward through the zodiac. Hence: retrograde.

For the skeptics among us, Larry Schwimmer writes in the HuffPo today about the Top Ten Things NOT To Do During Mercury Retrograde. Knowing that Mercury rules technology and communication, you’ll want to do your best to create a strategy to circumvent any agreements or purchases during these dicey weeks.

Other warnings Larry cites are:

  • Don’t make agreements
  • Don’t accept or start a job
  • Don’t try to close the sale
  • Don’t try to initiate a project
  • Don’t travel a lot (I’m looking at you Amy)
  • Don’t buy things
  • Don’t purchase a computer
  • Don’t install software
  • Don’t purchase a vehicle (Amy?)
  • Don’t repair your auto, and
  • Don’t select a roomie

Larry’s characterizations of each warning sound painful! Unfortunately, my friend Amy decided not to read the list, or she’d know that her vehicle would become unruly and problematic when she turned the wheel to pass a semi-truck on icy road. I’ll let her tell you that harrowing story. I just know that she wasn’t screaming “Weeeeeeeee” like Maxwell the Geico Pig as she spun 3 times landing in the opposite direction of oncoming traffic.

I’ve had my fair share of misadventures this month, too. Have you?

2014 Retrograde Dates
Oh, and you’ll be delighted to know we’ve got 2 more of these occurrences this year. In 2014, Mercury will be retrograde during:

  • February 6–28
  • June 7–July 2
  • October 4–25

Enjoy your summer!


Send a Valentine eCard featuring my illustrations!

Did you know you can send eCards featuring my illustrations? True story!

Along with the printed cards I have in my shop and on my web site, I have created a range of online cards that you can send love to your friends -you can get these from celebrations.comAnd they’re free.

Valentine's Day eCards

I’ve added a few more sweet CalligraphyCats and CalligraphyDogs for you to use as single cards to mass invitations.

Enjoy and please let me know which one you chose for your project and how!

Your CreativeGoddess,

Licketh – CalligraphyCat Inspiration

Want to know where my inspiration comes from?

CalligraphyCats V2 - Licketh

It comes from my own kitchen counter.

Caught in the act. And you wonder where I get my CalliigraphyCat inspiration?!

A video posted by Lisa Stewart (@lisastewart) on

Rebel Law: Make Your Own Building

Exploring ideas in tiny and mobile dwellings.

After building our TARDIS shed last Summer, I think we have the makings of constructing (or have pre-built) our own mobile shop.

After reading this article on Gizmodo: The Subtle Art of Breaking Building Laws I felt free of zoning constraints.

Your Personal Indoor/Outdoor Space
Take a look at a couple of these gems. Wouldn’t this be great for an artist studio that communes with nature and provides ventilation? So charming!


Or this adorable New Zealand home that allows one to hitch to a truck and haul away (per erosion issue law)…


Then I found a link to TumbleWeed, Tiny House Company. Cue angelic music from above. From pre-built gems to DIY plans, these guys provide the range of motion that any progressive would enjoy.

Then, I found this exquisite little guy: the Mica. At 172 sqft, we could convert this mobile gypsy wagon into a mobile shop to sell our wares. How cool would that be?

Instead of paying a landlord the same $$ that I’d be paying monthly installments for a mobile unit, the unit would be mine. I could also sell the unit instead of not signing the lease. Wow. The options.

Additionally, I dug a little deeper in their site and discovered that Tumbleweed has workshops around the states, including Raleigh in March 2014.

Anyhow, I’ll keep this idea on the back burner. I love the idea, but I’m not sure how cities would go for this type of installment -mobile as it is.

AmTrak: A Mobile Shopping Experience
Many years ago, I had an idea of servicing AmTrak as a mobile shopping experience. Like a circus, artists & shopkeeps would rent a boxcar and the train would take the shops from city to city to expose city dwellers to handcrafted product. If they can’t come to us, why don’t we go to them? Like Cirque du Soleil except without the flame eaters.

It would certainly be fun to hitch or create a convoy of this Mica trailers and create our own event.

Cheers! Lisa




The best way to predict your future is to create it.

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