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Alchemy Notebook

The Alchemy Notebook is an ongoing artwork project begun in 2005. The following images are from the pages of my pocket sized Moleskine sketchbook, in the same order as they appear in the book itself.

Click HERE to access the Alchemy Notebook gallery quality Giclée archival print collection on the Ninth Wave Designs Society6 art print store.

You can view the Flickr slideshow of the Alchemy Notebook pages below or click HERE to go to the set on Flickr and view the full size version:


17 Responses to Alchemy Notebook

  1. Tara Partridge

    can i buy your alchemy notebook? are they for sale? could you make me a alchemy notebook im in love with it. i attempted to draw some of the pages in my own “notebook” and it DID NOT look anything as amazing as yours. please i would be so honored to have your alchemy book. please respond as quick as you cann. i heard you went out of business but you must have copies left over please i must have your book

  2. Ninth Wave

    Hi Tara –

    Thanks very much for your comment – there is only one Alchemy notebook, the original notebook that I have scanned and posted images here – I haven’t made any copies of it yet. Once I have completed the notebook I would like to reproduce it, but that will be some time from now I imagine. I am glad it speaks to you in this way – I will work on getting more pages complete and posting them online here. Thank you!

  3. Tara Partridge

    well thats too bad :/ but your work is fantastic (: i will be waiting to see your new pictures. i would love to watch how u draw these. i cant believe someone could draw something like this by hand. i really wish u could get me a copy, but i understand – sadly . but you are very good at what you do and im sure tons of people would buy your book. thank you for your respond.

  4. Yuuri

    Dear Ninth Wave,

    I am completely fascinated that a person in the year 2011 is doing something this wonderful, interesting and difficult. Most people today are just following the slice of life, I am so unbelievable happy that I can see people doing something extraordinary. I could talk hours about the beauty of your art and the riddles behind it.
    I just wanted to say thank you for making my life better and showing me that there’s still very intelligent, interesting and extraordinary people!

    Thank you!

    PS: I would love to buy your alchemy notebook!

  5. Ninth Wave

    Thank you Yuuri for your very kind comment. I am investigating ways to reproduce the notebook, including the possibility of some kind of eBook format. But first I need to find some time to finish filling the pages to make it complete. I am very glad that my artwork connects with you in this way. Thanks!

  6. lilly

    Hi there,

    Did you copy your designs and such from historic manuscripts or create them from imagination? I’m sure by now you know that one of your images is part of an (unsolved) online puzzle trail. Theories suggest it may be a red herring, but we don’t really know. By the way, your designs are beautiful.

  7. Ninth Wave

    Hello Lilly –

    Some of my images were adapted from historic manuscripts – the green lion, the baboon, the two page spread with the bottles, and the idea for the hand came from somewhere although it is heavily adapted. The rest of the imagery is original, from my imagination, as you say.

    I am not aware of the puzzle trail – do you have a link? None of the cipher text is an intentional red herring, but for some the text length may be short enough to make them very hard to solve. My main reason for using ciphers is to obscure my meaning so that viewers can project their own onto the imagery, but it is interesting that solving the cipher is part of the enjoyment for some people as well. Thanks very much, glad to hear from you.

  8. Ninth Wave

    Hello Lilly again –

    I did a little bit of digging and discovered the puzzle you were referring to. See my blog post HERE for more information. Thanks again.

  9. Maya

    What language/languages are used in the notebook? a lot of it looks like the Theban alphabet, but I’m still not sure of the language.

  10. Ninth Wave

    I used the alchemical alphabet of Agrippa as the basis and adapted the letterforms somewhat from there. I create cipher text using those letterforms and mix it up on some pages so it isn’t always a simple substitution. Especially in the more recent pieces I try to obscure the message just enough to not make it obvious. I feel that my meaning behind the artwork isn’t as important as what others see themselves.

  11. Maya

    Interesting… now I’ve got a need to try and break your ciphers, and that explains the slight differences between your writing and the theban alphabet. You’ve just given me a new way to kill time. 🙂

  12. Jane

    I love your work! They have inspired me to get back to my moleskines and start creating. I’m in love with your Cipher Wheel piece! Do the wheels spin? How did you manage that with the moleskine? Do you also use Ogham in some of your works? Sorry for all the questions! 🙂

    P.S. Have you read The Museum of Lost Wonder by Jeff Hoke? It reminds me of your pieces 🙂

  13. Ninth Wave

    Hello Jane –

    Thanks very much! Yes, the cipher wheel spins – I have a second Moleskine sketchbook that I take the pages out of to cut up for pieces to make the constructions in the Alchemy Notebook. And yes, good eye for picking out the Ogham – I have some stylized Ogham characters here and there throughout the notebook.

    I have read Hoke’s book, and it is right up my alley – a very imaginative and detailed world he must live in.

    Have fun getting back into your Moleskine notebooks!

  14. Jane

    Thanks for the reply and the inspiration 🙂

  15. Anne

    You artwork is quite intricate and beautiful. I’ve enjoyed viewing it. I am not sure where you are located in the world, but you may be interested in this place for a possible exhibition of your fantastic works: http://www.avam.org/

  16. llaughy

    Thanks Anne for the link – I am in the US so that is a possibility. It looks like a very interesting organization, I am glad to have seen it. Thank you!

  17. Rockstar Pilgrim

    Hello,
    I stumbled upon this website of yours through the guiding hand that helps me and my, it has been an immense honor to view the workings in that notebook.
    Perhaps the page that appealed most to me was the last page. I find myself in this day having memories you could say, of the world lost to antiquity. These moments where I remember symbols, geometry and find myself diving into what I consider to be the work of my past bring me intense mystic joy. The kind that no matter how far I reach possesses no end and searching for the beginning only leaves me smiling.

    I would like to wish you many blessings and thank you for the work you have published.
    Rockstar Pilgrim

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