Alchemy and Artistry

Colors for these paints come from natural materials.
Colors for these paints come from natural materials.

Our computers and smartphones would not operate without the materials science that developed silicon-based integrated circuits. One way or another, chemistry underlies just about everything we do. The roots of chemistry stretch back to people’s early attempts to understand and manipulate the materials around them through the study and practice of alchemy.

Today we tend to be a step removed from the materials that make up the finished products we use. Patricia Miranda of Alchemical Tech wants to put you back in touch with the way natural materials are turned into the tools we use to create art and technology.


Patricia will be at World Maker Faire in New York later this month showing people how to turn materials like stones, bugs and flowers into colorful pigments. She will have lots of natural materials on hand to show the sources of colors. Visitors can use the paint that is made from these colors to create their own art while gaining a deeper understanding of the world around them. Come experience a bit of the science people have used through the centuries to add color to our world.

You can learn more about Patricia’s work at her website, or visit her Facebook page.

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!

Andrew Terranova is an electrical engineer, writer and author of How Things Are Made: From Automobiles to Zippers. Andrew is also an electronics and robotics enthusiast and has created and curated robotics exhibits for the Children's Museum of Somerset County, NJ and taught robotics classes for the Kaleidoscope Enrichment in Blairstown, NJ and for a public primary school. Andrew is always looking for ways to engage makers and educators.

View more articles by Andrew Terranova


Ready to dive into the realm of hands-on innovation? This collection serves as your passport to an exhilarating journey of cutting-edge tinkering and technological marvels, encompassing 15 indispensable books tailored for budding creators.