Would you wear and use a vintage pocket watch?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Photos from the New Jersey 2010 Steampunk World's Fair and info on 2011 fair

 For your enjoyment... images of the finely-attired folk who gathered to celebrate steampunk.

East coasters, and all coasters, be sure to check out the plans for next year's
2011 NJ Steampunk Worlds' Fair!  It will be held in Somerset, NJ May 20th-22nd, 2011!  Pre-registration is now open.

A convention closer in the timeline is VCON in Vancouver BC this October 2010.  "Steampunk: from Alchemy to Zeppelins" is their motto.  The guest list looks quite exciting!

When: October 1–3, 2010
Where: Vancouver Airport Marriott
"VCON is the oldest general-interest science fiction and fantasy convention in Canada and the Pacific Northwest. The convention has promoted the interests of science fiction and fantasy fan culture in Vancouver BC and its environs since 1971, offering events and exhibits focused on a variety of Science Fiction and Fantasy fandom interest areas such as literature, art, media, music, costumes, comics, games, etc."

Have a picture of your steampunk self or convention photos you would like to add here? Join the blog and post a link through comments!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Poll Results: What is your favorite incarnation of Steampunk?

Here are the results of our most recent poll: "What is your favorite incarnation of Steampunk?"

Victorian steampunk to the hilt, old chaps!
  31 (41%)
Dieselpunk -- I'll take mine with a shot of petrol!
  7 (9%)

Wild West steampunk -- Draw, pardner.
  2 (2%)
Gaslight Romance steampunk -- Ah, the nostalgia.
  4 (5%)
Cyberpunk -- Tech rules.
  5 (6%)
Fantasy steampunk -- Dragons and clockworks, oh my!
  14 (18%)
Sci-Fi steampunk -- Gimme that steam-powered R2D2!
  2 (2%)
Other -- I dunno, just make it anachronistic and cool.
  10 (13%)

Thanks to all who took the time to vote!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Twirl About Madly! Copper Spiral with Dangling Brass Watch Gear Steampunk Earrings

Copper Spiral and Brass Gear Earrings

     A kind customer once wrote that they liked my style because I made pieces that went beyond the "Gears! SQUEE!"  sentiment of most steampunk jewelry.  While I definitely do lapse into an odd state of bliss when I see exquisite watch parts, I do try to go beyond the usual when it comes to designing my pieces.  Sometimes it works, sometimes not.
     I think these work.  I made and sold (!) a similar pair years ago, and I wanted to perfect the techniques involved and even improve on the effect; the main difference is that the previous spiral earrings were not given a verdigris finish.  I happen to love how these turned out! They are the same length, despite the difference in the photograph; I wanted them to dangle as I took it, and I used the only decorative straight-ish thing I had as the hanger!
     Of course, these DreamSteam original design earrings are for sale on ArtFire.  I hope someone likes these enough to give them a home.  (They even come in a pretty red organza ribbon drawstring gift bag!)  These have now sold. (Thank you!) 

Edit 11/10:  Here is a new pair of copper spiral earrings for sale on ArtFire. I kept the design is similar, but added even more gears and more beautiful green verdigris finish!

Since I like these a lot, I will try to keep some earrings of this style in my shop at all times, so if these sell and you do not see more, do check in at my shop soon and/or leave me a note that you would like a pair.  Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

"Girl Genius" Wins Another Hugo Award!

Congratulations to Phil and Kaja Foglio, creators of the steampunk webcomic Girl Genius, on their second straight Hugo award for Best Graphic Story!

I have been a reader of their works for years, and am thrilled that their astounding artwork has again been recognized. If you have not seen the Girl Genius comic, I highly recommend starting at the beginning and reading all the way through!  The story alone is worth the time, but the drawing and colorization puts it over the top as a brilliant work of art.   They also have links to their other wonderful online comic stories: Buck Godot- Zap Gun for Hire, MythAdventures (based on Robert Asprin's Myth novels), and What's New with Phil & Dixie (published in Dragon Magazine in the 1980's).  Yes, I have read them all the way through, and adore them all.

One may notice that they have advertisements by the service Project Wonderful on their pages; I have run ads for my endeavors (shops and blog) there for a long time, with great success in terms of traffic generated.  Once, I wrote to Kaja herself, thanking her for the opportunity to reach so many steampunk fans and asking her to visit my humble jewelry studio, as she is a connoisseur of the style (I received a response from a nice team member, as I imagine they get oodles of email).  If it were not for their comics, steampunk and otherwise, I probably would have gotten 80% less shop traffic than I have; indeed, the destiny of their comics and mine are intertwined, as long as I can afford to advertise on their sites!

So, hip-hip-hooray!  And here's to many, many more successes for the Airship Entertainment empire.  You may wish to read an interview with Phil Foglio on the subject of their success.

Friday, September 3, 2010

You Hold the Key -- Victorian Lock and Key Copper Steampunk Necklace by DreamSteam

You Hold the Key... steampunk necklace for sale

 I love this piece.  In this steampunk inspired necklace, an antiqued Victorian style copper key dangles from a draped copper chain, ready to unlock the mysteries guarded by the exquisitely detailed miniature copper lock plate above.

The total chain length is an elegant 24" long. It has a matching copper toggle and ring clasp.
There are a pair of copper beads and some iridescent red glass beads along the chain as accents.

Inspiration / Story behind this Product:

Simple yet elegant. I was inspired by a necklace recently worn by the character Claudia on "Warehoue 13." The show is no stranger to steampunk, as among other touches the keyboard in their office was created by the master computer steampunker Jake von Slatt.

It is listed for sale on both Etsy and ArtFire.  Be on the lookout for a brass version of this necklace to be posted for sale soon!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

It's A Steam World, After All

To open with a philosophical topic, I give you a statement which appeared in the first issue of Steampunk Magazine, the Catastrophone Orchestra and Arts Collective:
Steampunk is a re-envisioning of the past with the hypertechnological perceptions of the present. Unfortunately, most so-called “steampunk” is simply dressed-up, recreationary nostalgia: the stifling tea-rooms of Victorian imperialists and faded maps of colonial hubris. This kind of sepia-toned yesteryear is more appropriate for Disney and suburban grandparents than it is for a vibrant and viable philosophy or culture.
    Though the statement was most likely intended to be derogatory, it was visionary indeed, for this concept has now come to pass.  I give you The Mechanical Kingdom, a collection of steampunk-ized Disney merchandise to entice collectors from a whole new market. (Or is that Disney-ized steampunk?)

     Five limited-edition (2,500 made first-run) steampunked Disney character pins are now on sale at USA Disney World parks.  There is also an available book that the creators penned to introduce people to what steampunk is, or rather explains the Disney version of it.  “The Mechanical Kingdom” pin set was released in April 2010 at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort, and supposedly costs $195.   The next steampunk pin set will be released at the Sci-Fi Academy event at Disneyland Resort in Summer 2011.

      The Vinylmation Steampunk pocket watch will be packaged with a 3-inch figure that was inspired by the watch. The watch and figure combination will have an limited edition run of 750 and is scheduled for release in California and Florida in December 2010.

     The above image shows prototype figures from the upcoming limited edition "Vinylmation Steampunk" set created by Disney Design Group Artist Mike Sullivan. This set will contain six figures and will be released in early 2011.

     Some people say that these plastic items show that Disney does not care for either the Victorian Era or science fiction, but just wants to make some bucks.  This may be true, but I would like to point out that over the years, Disney has included steampunk themes in their parks (20,000 Leagues Under the Sea exhibit and Wild West-themed Frontierland at Disneyland) and many of their movies have embraced the steampunk genre long before it became "popular" (Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, The Island at the Top of the World, Atlantis, and more).  Disneyland Paris itself is a veritable pantheon of Vernian attractions, rides, and exhibits with a "what if" scientific bent.  They have done more to bring steampunk to the masses than any other individual organization that I can name, even if they do make a killing doing so.  Besides, there isn't exactly a local store where collectors can go to buy items that were really made in the Victorian era (in most places).  Real remnants of the period are pretty rare.  (That sounds like a topic for a future post... hmm.)

   So, as ever, it comes down to what you enjoy.  If little plastic figurines make you happy, then snap them up!  If ya do not like them, then don't.  Either way, Disney's efforts may benefit steampunk; the more people who learn of it, the longer we will all get to enjoy its' presence and influence.  I hope you enjoy seeing these collectibles.  Send pics if you buy one and modify it to make it more steampunk.  *grin*


Related Posts with Thumbnails