The first time the Department of Teeny-weeny Wonders featured the tiny handmade creations of Denver, CO-based artist Evan Lorenzen we shared photos of his book entitled “The Mini Book of Major Events.” This time we’re paging through an equally tiny volume that explores a smaller, but no less delightful theme, “Life’s Lil Pleasures.” From the sounds of rain and chirping birds to eating cereal from your enemy’s skull, and balloons, this itty-bitty book is full miniature illustrations of things that make us glad to be alive, you know, the little things.

To check out more of Evan Lorenzen’s work, including tiny art, illustrations and animations, follow him right here on Tumblr at artandsuchevan or check out his website, Instagram feed and Facebook page.

[via Demilked]


The Notion of Family Photographs by LaToya Ruby Frazier

In this, her first book, LaToya Ruby Frazier offers an incisive exploration of the legacy of racism and economic decline in America’s small towns, as embodied by her hometown of Braddock, Pennsylvania. The work also considers the impact of that decline on the community and on her family, creating a statement both personal and truly political—an intervention in the histories and narratives of the region. 

With The Notion of Family, Frazier knowingly acknowledges and expands upon the traditions of classic black-and-white documentary photography, enlisting the participation of her family—and her mother in particular. As Frazier says, her mother is “coauthor, artist, photographer, and subject. Our relationship primarily exists through a process of making images together. I see beauty in all her imperfections and abuse.” In the creation of these collaborative works, Frazier reinforces the idea of art and image-making as a transformative act, a means of resetting traditional power dynamics and narratives, both those of her family and those of the community at large.

Purchase a copy here.


Mauve is the first modern synthetic dye, but its discovery in 1856 was not intentional. Given the assignment to find a cure for malaria using coal tar, 18-year-old William Henry Perkins, a student at the Royal College of Chemistry, did not succeed in finding a revolutionary medicine, but instead noticed that he was left with a beautifully-colored residue. Perkins would file his first patent for the color in 1857 and his coal tar dye would go on to become all the rage, even becoming a color of choice for Queen Victoria. 

Find out more about mauve and other early dyes and pigments in The Brilliant History of Color in Art!

Image caption & credit: Mauve sample from The American Practical Dyer’s Companion by E. J. Bird. 1882. Los Angeles, Getty Research Institute. 


In this episode of Cool Stuff in the Mail, we have Hugs and Misses: 30 Postcards of Awkward Romance. Hey, we’ve all been there – the bad blind date, the miscommunication, the bumbling idiot. Artist Wilhelm Staehle makes whimsical cutouts that bring these priceless moments to life, collected here as a series of postcards. As you can see, the animals are my favorite, because who doesn’t love personification? Check out more of the artist’s work here.

–Intern Bita


I’m super happy to announce that after five years (oh gosh), I am finally ready to produce a Genomancer art book.  You know, that thing where my OCs come from. Also, it got Kickstarter Staff Pick yesterday!  Woohoo!

Genomancer is about a wisecracking, shapeshifting convict and his employer, a kind-of nerdy, kind-of broke princess who have to unravel the connection between magic and science to stop a selfish, scientist prince from taking advantage of technology. They cast also includes an oafish knight, a female berserker, a charming smuggler, a hot-headed psychic, a prostitute spy, and a cross-dressing tailor.

The book collects both art and writing for the “100 Themes Project." You can choose between PDF, softcover, and limited-edition hardcover editions - all with exclusive postcards. If we meet the stretch goals, I’ll be able to include more, new content! And an audiobook! And a soundtrack! And a font pack!

This is also your only chance in the near future to get commissions from me outside of a convention. ;) And to pick up some out-of-print books I made in previous years.

I’d really appreciate if you signal boost the hell out of this (and all future campaign-related posts)!  One lucky re-blogger will win a free sketch at the end of the campaign. You will be entered once for each campaign post you re-blog.

Here is a Facebook post you can share: And a Tumblr post you can re-blog: And a Twitter post you can re-tweet: 

And once again, here’s the link


In 1744, the first-ever indigo crop was produced in South Carolina. What makes this success particularly unusual for the eighteenth-century? The mastermind behind it was Eliza Lucas, a young woman left in charge of her father’s plantation while he was away at war. Starting from when she was 16, Eliza experimented with various crops to keep her family’s fortune afloat, but it wasn’t until she produced this healthy indigo crop that she truly made a name for herself. At the time indigo was a popular dye for luxurious tapestries (like the one above), but it would go on to be used to color the original Levi’s. 

For the full story of Eliza Lucas and indigo, check out The Brilliant History of Color in Art.

Image credit: Psyche at the Basketmakers, French (Beauvais Manufactory), about 1750. Silk and wool, after design by Francois Boucher. Los Angeles, JPGM.