Sunday, February 27, 2011

Steam, the Hunt, begins tomorrow!


The Steam Hunt for 2011 will begin tomorrow, and last the entire month of March!  For those not involved in SL, hunts in Second Life are endeavors in which a group of merchants band together and provide special items for participating individuals (and ideally the individuals will find something of their liking at said stores).  Some enjoy items that are outstanding (and free), others enjoy the hunt, yet others simply with to involve themselves a bit more with SL Steampunk!


An example of a Steam Hunt treasure!

Regardless of one's motivation, there are plenty of established stores, and a number of new Steampunk stores on this year's hunt, so if one has a penchant for seeing a wider variety of SL Steampunk items and designers, do take a moment (or a bit longer) to indulge in this year's hunt!


Ladies' attire from the Steam Hunt - the "Victorian Spy",
by Snowpaws

To keep up to date with the goings on with the Steam Hunt, do pay a visit to their main page, located at: http://steamthehunt.blogspot.com/, or pay a visit to Virtually Classic Fashions, where Miss Carver provides a more in-depth review of selected items from the hunt, at: http://seabreezegal.blogspot.com/

New Dr. Who MMORG to be deisgned by Three Rings (the company with the amazing Nemo-Submersible office)


What a proper meeting room should look like (more or less)...

Heard about a new Dr. Who MMORG which the BBC will be working with a company named Three Rings will begin work later this year (projected, at least).  I can't say I am exceptionally knowledgeable about the Dr. Who genre, but the name of the company did ring a bell.  In fact, they received quite a bit of press a few years ago with their innovative Nautical Steampunk offices in San Francisco!


A screened photo of their glass wall divider (love the tentacles on the left!)

I will keep the debate on canon regarding the Dr. Who discussion to the appropriate boards and websites... however, I'll certainly take the opportunity to post a few more photos of this amazing business establishment's decor!  For more reviews and updates on their locale (which still remains the same), please visit...

http://www.becausewecan.org/SuperEco_press

http://www.wired.com/culture/design/multimedia/2007/06/gallery_nemo_office

http://www.nextgadgets.net/atlantis-inspired-steampunk-office-with-custom-desks/



Their plaque, commemorating their company (in brass, of course)!

.... and for the Dr. Who enthiasts who visit the SPT, here are a few locations of interest regarding the upcoming MMORG....

http://news.drwho-online.co.uk/#Doctor-Who-Worlds-in-Time-Multiplayer-Game

http://blogs.forbes.com/davidewalt/2011/02/24/doctor-whos-first-multiplayer-game-worlds-in-time/?partner=yahootix

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/33215/BBC_Three_Rings_Creating_FreeToPlay_Dr_Who_Online_Game.php

Friday, February 25, 2011

Steampunk Events: 25th to 27th of February, 2011


AnachroCon, the Southern Steampunk gathering of impressive measure, will be taking place this weekend in Atlanta, GA!  This event is quite literally jam-packed with presentations, specialty program track, a cavalcade of vendors and fan tables, and much, much more!  For further information, please visit their homepage (while on the road to the convention), at: http://www.anachrocon.com/home-2/


In conjunction with AnachroCon, the Artifice Club will be hosting a Gaslamp Gala @ 7pm (tonight)!  With exceptional music and additional entertainment, the Gaslamp Gala is certain to be an outstanding introduction to AnachroCon!  For further details, please see their online location, at: http://theartificeclub.weebly.com/the-gaslamp-gala.html



In Second Life, the legendary builder Nemo will be in attendance at the Steampunk Flea market this Saturday, the 26th!  As the event manager, Mr. Kuperpunk explained...

 "...we start our great Steampunk Fleamarket next to Kafe Kruemelkram in Second Life. The best and most famous SL Steampunk Designers and Artists will present their works on a victorian market on drifting platforms in the harbour of Kafe Kruemelkram. One of them is Sextan Shepherd. well known for his amazing steampunk city "Nemo" which was reported about not only in SecondLife but in the real world as well." 

To pay a visit, please follow this SLurl to arrive at the Flea market: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Ataria/56/160/23

(and my thanks for the patience of all readers as I attempt to catch up with the "projects in progress"!)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Dominion Dispatch, Issue Three, is on the Virtual Bookstands!


Issue Three of the Dominion Dispatch hit the pavement today, and its a quality production replete from Steampunk Canada, replete with outstanding articles.  Between its pages, you'll find a wide selection of fiction and non-fiction book reviews, Steampunk movie previews, attire development, and a preview of the Canadian National Steampunk Exhibition!  As one can gather, I certianly recommened that one takes a moment with a bit of your favorite coffee or tea, and indulge the latest issue of this work!  Issue three can be located here: http://www.steampunkcanada.ca/publications/DominionDispatch1_3.pdf

Additional information regarding previous issues of the Dominion Dispatch can be located at the Steampunk Canada homepage, located here: http://www.steampunkcanada.ca/dominiondispatch.htm

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Help finish "Monty and the Runaway Furnace" Movie... (and a few website updates)!



Came across this unique production which is currently being filmed, but unfortunately... they are having some issues with the last few scenes.  As nothing says Steampunk more than a steam boiler, I thought it would be quite appropriate to attempt to assist with their request to help complete their production!  For more details regarding Monty and the Runaway Furnace, please do visit their main location, at: http://www.montyandthefurnace.com/ , then consider a visit to their Kickstart aether location, at: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1729475697/monty-and-the-runaway-furnace


(Via her DeviantArt webpage) - do pay her a visit!

Now, onto the aforementioned website changes... I've added some new tabs under the header, to take advantage of Bloggers' added functionality.  As such, I've been able to shoe-horn in a few more topics, and am in the process of bringing them up-to-speed, to your patience is appreciated!  The new categories are as follows...

Steampunk Facebook Pages - I'm moving the listing for the Steampunk Facebook Pages a bit higher.  Its current location is a bit ... buried, shall we say, so with the growth of more Steampunk Facebook locations, I'm hoping to make it a bit easier to reach.  Again, if you happen to have (or know of) a Steampunk Facebook page, please do let me know, and I'll add it as soon as possible!

Steampunk Esty Endeavors - The small artisans who travail making many of the good works seen by adherents of the Steampunk community can always use more accolades, so this will be my small effort to present links to their stores.  I'm thinking this will be a longer term project, as there are many Steampunk Esty stores, but one has to start somewhere!  If your Esty endeavor has a Steampunk focus, please do drop a line to TheSteampunkTribune@yahoo.com, and lets see if we can add your endeavor to the list!

Second Life Steampunk - As many know, I started this small yellow journal with Second Life Steampunk efforts.  Though I penned the old Steampunk Travelogue, I thought that a current listing of existing Steampunk locations, beyond the mish-mash (imo) which Second Life search presents, would be appropriate.  If you happen to know of a Steampunk sim that's not listed, again, please do bend my elbow about it!

Steampunk Wonders of the World - This an occasionally visited topic, with a thread on Brass Goggles from 2007, and my own attempt to make a listing of the same topic on 2010.  As this is a longer term project, if you can think of something in RL (no, not Second Life), which may fit the bill as a Steampunk Wonder, please head on over to the page, and feel free to make a recommendation - ty!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Concept art preview of Steampunk Tooth Faeries, of the film production from the "Mr. Wicked Mr. Danior"!


Detail of the fairy's mechanical appendages


The other day I was fortunate enough to receive an email from Mr. Ben Mart, the director of the Wicked Mr. Danior, who kindly provided as yet unreleased concept art (by Mr. Chris Down) from his cinematographic endeavor.  As he extrapolated regarding the conceptual work...


The Wicked Mr Danior is proud to present inconjuntion with The Steampunk Tribune, the world's first preview of our steampunk'd tooth fairies by Chris Down 2009,(www.chrisdown.co.uk) Chris is one of the leading UK Fairy Artists, originally trained as an engineer he (thankfully), turned to drawing the fantasy and fairy kingdom's. We wish to thank him for the superb designs.



Concept art detail of the fairy's face and back


Our tooth fairies differ from other steampunk fairies, as our tooth fairies ain't "born" mechanical but natural and have been steampunk'd, adopted by the crazed tinder dwarf, Mr Monroe. As you can see the wings are used as the power source to drive the tools that help manufacture Danior's world famous dentures. On a intellectual basis I conotate this tooth fairy production line as a metaphor for the start of Industrail Revolution and how the rural workers and childern were forced economical and though brutal laws(the Inclosure Acts) into factories and mills in the new industrial cities of  northern England.




Mechanical design detail

We are now developing this film project and we're raising further development funds through our indiegogo campaign. If you wish to contribute towards out steam punk fairytale we offer a  selection of perks from concept art to tooth fairy jewelry.  please follow link below   

http://www.indiegogo.com/The-Wicked-Mr-Danior




Additional mechanical detail, and an image of a free fairy! 


Also you can follow us on facebook and our blogsite

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Wicked-Mr-Danior/155109691207270
http://thewickedmrdanior.blogspot.com/

Finally we wish to welcome Joe Slatter (from The Dark Power) to the team as Prop Master and the Architect to our steam punk dentist chair.



Most certainly looking forward to more details regarding the Wicked Mr. Danior - I'll keep you posted as more details become available!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The incredible Super-Steampunk artwork of Mr. Chet Phillips


Via IO9, I came across the most outstanding artwork of Mr. Chet Phillips, who has (now) two sets of Steampunk Super-Individuals!  Originally he had a set of the "Union of Superlative Heroes" trading card set, and had now gone and produced a new set, titled the "Order of Nefarious Villains"!  Excellent art and background appropriate to the era, these cards are gems!


I would heartily recommend a visit to Mr. C. Phillips's website, where you can obtain copies of both decks, so do pay a visit to his website, at: http://www.chetart.com/, and his Esty site, at: http://www.etsy.com/shop/chetart, which has an extensive collection of his art - do enjoy!


"The Purple Jester" (aka, the Joker"), from his latest work!

Steampunk Tarot cards from Curly Cue Designs...


The Magician and The Empress cards

I received word of an exceptional design house which has released a set of extremely impressive Tarot cards, with a Steampunk theme.  Curly Cue Design has a wide variety of unique and impressive works, but their Steampunk Tarot deck most certainly displays an extensive infusion of Art Nouveau / Belle Epoque design into one visually impressive work.


The Hanged Man and Judgement Card

The juxtaposition of using era imagery and classic works does make this deck a sight to see!  The images can also be acquired on an individual basis (on a note card), so to see the entire selection, do consider paying a visit to their Esty store, at: http://www.etsy.com/shop/curlycuedesign?ref=top_trail , or their main webpage, at: http://www.curlycuedesign.com/.

Friday, February 18, 2011

The Nevermore Ball, The Grand Tour, and more Steampunk Events this weekend!


There are plenty of events taking place this weekend in the Steampunk worlds!  In RL, Chicago will be hosting Gearbox Fantastique at 9pm (which means if you're reading this, you're already late)!  However there will be a second performance, per their Facebook site, so for more details, please visit it, at: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=182566518432994&ref=ts

Next, beautiful San Diego will be hosting The Eathernaut: A Steampunk Saloon - which will featuring the lovely and talented Miss Veronique!  The event will base many talented musical individuals and groups, so do consider paying a visit to their site for more information, located at: http://djwolfie.com/


In Second Life, the Grand Tour V will be starting this weekend!  Throughout the Steamlands, the "All Aboard Grand Tour" is back, with 15 venues in its locomotive-themed tour!  The schedule is as follows...

Saturday

5am-7am Al Andalus Alhambra: The beautiful palaces of 13th century Moorish Spain is hosting a music festival featuring Joaquin Gustav’s flamenco guitar and the amazing percussion group DRUM! Also the beginning of the All Aboard Grand Tour Photo contest, sponsored by Al Andalus! Pick up the rules here. Flamenco or Arab dress encouraged!

7am-9am Tuliptree: Hobo Haven Jungle Grand Opening sponsored by the Virtual Rail Consortium, with Hobo and train music played by DJ Callipygian Christensen. Come and learn the history of rail at this wonderful build, and see what the Consortium is doing in SL. Hobo costumes… or whatever you have!

9am-11am Steam SkyCity: Sparking Gears Ball. Romance among the Robots! Clanks and Automatons are invited to come and greet the day, with dancing and prizes for best avatars.

11am-1pm Winterfell: Revelry on Reverie. Love and Devotion music, in beautiful Winterfell, with DJ Gabrielle Riel.

1pm-3pm Antiquity: Celebrating the "All Aboard" theme, various sims and factions through Antiquity have donated something that makes them special or unique: food, guards, art, etc to celebrate the diversity Antiquity has to offer.

3pm-6pm Seraph City: A city representing the era “between the world wars, presents music and dance with Edward Pearse, at the Seraph City Club, the classiest club in Seraph City.


6pm-9pm New Babbage: Piermont Landing presents The Never More Midnight Blue Ball, Saturday including a Creative Steampunk Cage Building Contest. ( After all, do you think we are going to cage Ravens or they going to Cage YOU ?) Dress is formal, midnight blue of course, and there are prizes!

9pm-11pm Caledon’s Oxbridge Village: Thistle Hill Marketplace, a cozy collection of shops featuring Victorian era Steampunk gadgetry, original artworks, and much more, hosts a dance at Alley Cat Alley, with a theme of cats and other night animals, with DJ Poppy. 

11pm-1am New Toulouse: DJ Gabriel Riel takes the party to crescendo with “Don’t Throw Mama From The Train: Jazz and Blues in late night. Theme is trains and travel and 1920’s dress appropriate!


Sunday

7am-9am Seraph City: Hold the Front Page! The Primgraph Offfice Grand Opening in Seraph City includes dancing and a murder mystery! Journalistic attire will get you in the proper frame of mind!

9am-11am New Babbage: Brunel Hall Academy Pop over to the steamlands largest and most luxurious hotel for dancing and general frivolity as Victor1st Mornington takes you through a tour of the chart topping hits from 1950's all the way to the 1980's.Steampunk attire is a New Babbage standard. 

11am-1pm Clos Normand: The Consulate of Europa welcomes the Tour as Duke Otenth Paderborn regales us with tales from the rails, high above the beautiful sims of Côte d'Fleurie.

1pm-3pm Armada Breakaway: Celebrating the second anniversary during the Grand Tour with a dance! There will be rum and pirates and ladies in their finest gowns. Join us as we ring in another year of mayhem!

3pm-5pm Steelhead: This Steampunk/Victorian Town set in the late 1800's in the Pacific Northwest, Washington Oregon territories brings their original flavor to the Grand Tour! Join DJ Fuzzball Ortega to see what this year has in store.

5pm -7pm Steeltopia: Rounding out the tour in the Pneumatic Revolution Lounge,DJ SteelCobra Calamari hosts the Super Spy vs Super Villain Dance. Come as a Super Spy, Villain or henchman, let's make Mr Bond and Goldfinger proud! A wide variety of spy tunage to be played. 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Fashion Research Essay regarding Steampunk Influences, an academic work from the University of North Texas


Vagabond Opera & the Portland Cello Project
(Photo via Steampunk-Beauties.tumblr.com, per Mr. X. Gerrymander)

Fashion is perhaps one of the driving forces of Steampunk, providing an opportunity to express on-self and proclaim an association with the beloved genre of Steampunk.  A bit ago, Mr. Ramon Fagan posted on this topic at his blog, the Art of Steampunk, and kindly allowed a posting of said article (a bit shortened) on the Tribune...



The following are excerpts from a research project by fashion design students from the University of North Texas, with one Ms. Bonnie McGowan in the lead (assisted by Dayly Waggoner and others), focusing on the influences of the Steampunk Sub-culture on modern changes in fashion both in specialized markets and in the broader fashion world.  It shows good insight and significant research into current and evolving trends that go much deeper than just appearance and touch on many of the deeper motivations that drive the popularity of Steampunk culture as well as fashion today.   As such, I asked for, and received permission to post the entire paper on my personal blog and to submit interesting excerpts from it to Steampunk Magazines.  
Ramon Fagan, LCSW


Lolita Steampunk Beauty

Steampunk Culture: Where Innovation and Tradition Collide 

Non-couture steampunk clothing, like steampunk literature and entertainment, re-imagines the Victorian era. In the Steampunk Universe, there are incredible technological innovations powered by steam (this is where the steam in steampunk stems from,) and Victorian clothing is bred with a modern or futuristic touch. Just as the steampunk authors created an alternative history, so do the Steampunks with their attire.   ..…  Steampunk's clothing is even compared to the progressiveness of cyberpunk and the romanticism of Goth. Evelyn Kriete, who sells advertising space for magazines, explains that “the elaborate mourning dresses, waistcoats, hacking jackets and high-button shoes are goth’s stepchildren, for sure, but the overall look is 'not so much eyeliner and fishnets'” (Ferla, 2008).  [Editor’s note: while the level of influence of Goth on Steampunk fashion and culture is hotly debated, it is clear that many Victorian Goths have now joined the Steampunk Subculture movement as serious members of the community and that everything we are and have been comes with us throughout life, so some influence from that source is hard to question].  


(Via Deviant Art)

Many Steampunks  stray even further from the traditional-Victorian look in aviator, western, safari, vaudeville, cabaret, airship pirate and English military outfits. When we observed the North Texas Steampunks, [actually the DFW Chapter of the Steampunk Illumination Society, but she found their meeting, because most are also members of the North Texas Steampunks Facebook Group] we saw nearly all of these trends. An example of non-victorian steampunk-wear found was within the leaders of the North Texas Steampunks. Ramon Del Mar and his wife, Radha Narasimhan's, dressed in an “airship pirate manner,” with pirate hats, goggles, gear-patterned parachute pants and brass coins. Obviously, there are many variations of steampunk dress, but every steampunk looks as if he or she has traveled through time. Steampunks are anachronisms, inspired by the alteration of different time periods. Rather than ponder on possibilities, Steampunks rely on their imaginations to bring to life an antique style of dress. And that's not all that Steampunks value; they also share the desire to create and wear pieces that separate them from the mainstream.  In the ready-to-wear industry, middle class Americans are subject to buying mass produced clothing made in factories, in which several copies are made of the same garment. Quality takes the backseat to quantity, and thus the clothing industry acts as fast food fashion. Many Steampunks chose to rebel against retail distribution, (hence where the “punk” comes from) through buying or creating one of a kind pieces. Many steampunks purchase their own fabric and make all of their garments and accessories themselves.   

(Via Deviant Art)

       We witnessed many magnificent creations at Crystal's, but our favorite was an inventor's “hydraulically activated neural digitizer” [otherwise known simply as H.A.N.D.], complete with brass fingers and bendable vials of green liquid [this is a purportedly a hydraulically activated exoskeletal hand the inventor uses to cope with an injury in the lab]. The inventor [Dr. Phineas Maxwell Edison of the S.S. Kali’s Hourglass] chose to invent from scratch, but many steampunks choose not to sew [or fabricate], but recycle instead. They often use pieces found at thrift or vintage stores and modify them to appear more distressed and antique.   


(Via Deviant Art, EBay Shop here)

Another unique aspect of Steampunk culture is its formality. In keeping to the established activities of former eras, Steampunks often participate in more aristocratic activities, such as tea parties and time-traveling balls. While visiting Crystal's Pizza, we discovered that these steampunks dress up for every event that they have, even if it is at a restaurant. Since most people only dress up for weddings and funerals, steampunk events are a good excuse to look fabulous. Deborah Castellano, an organizer of  neo-Victorian conventions claims that these events “[offer] an element of glamour that some of us would otherwise never experience.” (Rowe, 2008) Most Steampunks are unable to dress in their desired attire at their day jobs, so adorning themselves in exciting attire means more than dressing up and having fun. It is a time to masquerade in an exciting and fantastical world, where individuality and extravagance are celebrated. Their former lives are forgotten and they transform into different characters from a separate galaxy. Many Steampunks have character names for their Steampunk persona, and dance and drink as professors, inventors and magicians. These unconventional clothing choices symbolize their freedom from society's hold. 



As Steampunk fashion evolves and more people become interested in the culture, one thing will be certain: even more by-products of steampunk will emerge, and more time periods and eras will use Steampunk inspiration. Science fiction writers will create more alternative histories for later and earlier time periods than ever before.



Another whispered trend that will soon shine in the Steampunk World is Clockpunk. This seeding trend takes place during the Renaissance, and it relies on clockwork rather than steam power.  And Leonardo Da Vinci and Galileo are [to] be the clockpunk gods (Hannaford, 2007). So far, this mini-trend has stuck to technological advancements rather than fashion, but this will change over time. We should expect to see Renaissance clothing along with antique map designs, gears, miniature telescopes and Steampunk trademarks throughout.  [Editor’s Note: the S.S. Kali’s Hourglass Acting Troupe already specializes in “Clockpunk” now]


For the full article please go to the following link:  http://artofsteampunk.blogspot.com/2011/02/fashion-research-essay-about-steampunk.html


Ramon Fagan, LCSW (aka “Admiral” Ramon Leon del Mar) writes articles and reviews for 5 different online Steampunk magazines as well as for his blog at http://artofsteampunk.blogspot.com      

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Alternative Living Expo Contest - featuring Steampunk decor and design!


Received word from Miss Ay-leen (from Tor.com), that the Alternative Living Expo will be taking place early next month, part of which will demonstrate a Steampunk influenced towards design and decor, along with examples of unique Steampunk-type interiors at the Expo.  Looks to be quite an event, and Miss Ay-leen has composed outstanding coverage of it at Tor.com's Steampunk location - the article in question is located here: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2011/02/steampunk-kitchens-a-more-at-the-alternative-living-expo


An example of a Modern Victorian (aka, Steampunk) kitchen

Additionally, you can also participate to win free tickets to the event as well!  Tor.com is offering five sets of complimentary tickets to attend the Alternative Living Expo - all one has to do is post a comment on the thread - where at?... just follow this link: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2011/02/win-free-tickets-to-the-alternative-living-expo, for further details - the contest ends this Friday, the 18th at noon (EST), so do hurry!



Miss Ay-leen the Peacemaker is the
Founding Editor of BeyondVictoriana.com
A Multicultural Perspective on Steampunk

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Seattle is indeed the "unofficial" capitol of Steampunk!


About time I caught up with the results of the Seattle poll... back in December, I had proposed the simple question based on an article from a local Seattle paper, which proclaimed Seattle as the "unofficial" capital of Steampunk.  Wasn't quite sure about the results, as though Seattle has been a bit of an incubator for the genre, there are also other cities which could justifiably vie for said title, such as London, New York, New Orleans, only to mention a few.  The voting was interesting, as there was an impressive "pro-Seattle" surge at the poll's beginning, but I felt that if there was some kind of... motivated voting, the length of this (unscientific) poll would be normative in its ultimate results.

The results as chosen by the readership was... it is in fact the "unofficial" capital of Steampunk.  However, differential was actually smaller than I had originally thought it would be - of 142 votes, 77 (54%) agreed with the statement, and 65 (45%) disagreed with the statement.  As Guillaume commented (on this particular article), with an impassioned view of Steampunk world appeal, of which I also agree.  Though Seattle has become a Mecca for the genre (to include SteamCon), I've also noticed an explosion of East Coast conventions (e.g. the Steampunk Worlds Fair, Anachrocon 2011... a peek at the Steampunk Empire's events listing can provide a cacophony of listings)!  Perhaps as Steampunk becomes more recognized, it will spawn more and larger events to indulge in!  Regardless, congratulations to Seattle, Steampunk's "unofficial" captial!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Caravan, Rush's Steampunk Video


Visual mediums applied to music are particular impressive, as seen by the growing number of recording artists incorporating Steampunk imagery into the video accompanying their music.  When I saw the legendary rock group Rush display their work for the single "Caravan", it did raise an eye to see a very well know rock group inject a good bit of Steampunk into their work.  Additionally, this song is projected to be part of their upcoming studio album, titled "Clockwork Angles", which will be released later this year.  Not sure *exactly* how much Steampunk will be part of this release, but again, it certainly bodes well for the growth of the genre, as a growing number of established artists begin to pass an eye over Steampunk!   For more information about Rush, do consider a visit to the website, which contains more information about their current road trip, "The Time Machine Tour", and background on their extensive career (e.g. 14 Platinum records, 24 Gold records, 3rd best selling rock band of all time, and more), at: http://www.rush.com/

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Brass Goggle kits from Borg Steam Factory (coming soon!...)


While researching an article for a bit later, I came across a unique kit which address a perennial issue vexing may a Steampunk enthusiast.  Brass Goggle (the accoutrement, not the forum) are essentially iconic with the genre, but finding a good pair is a challenge.  One sees beautiful sets in photo shoots, or perhaps even at a convention, but as far as having a unique set of your own.... that might be a bit expensive, to put it mildly.  Finding a pair of welding goggles and applying a bit of paint has been the most common course of action - but perhaps not in the future....


Via the Steampunk Empire, I came across a very interesting item that a company named Borg Steam Factory is proposing to do - provide basic DIY brass goggle kits!  As posted on The Empire by the Architect, the kits will provide the basic necessities to either allow mass construction (say, if you had a necessity for a group with a unique style of goggles), or simply allow a DIY project to produce the brass goggles you've always yearned for!


A custom designed "Nemo" set of brass goggles

Not sure exactly when they will be available for purchase, but I'm imagining that it will be sometime in the near future (based on what I've divined from their website).  Still, if you have an image in your cranium of the perfect set of goggles, or simply need a few pieces to finish/fix your current set (they do sell parts as well), do pay the Borg Steam Factory, at: http://www.borgsteamfactory.com/index.html , or go directly to their goggles site, at: http://www.borgsteamfactory.com/goggles.html !

Friday, February 11, 2011

Weekend Events: 12th & 13th of February, 2011... the apex of Steampunk evil has a birthday today.


This weekend is full of Steampunk events, starting with the Rose City Steampunk Film Festival!  Taking place this weekend, the Clinton Street Theater will be ground zero for the cutting edge of Steampunk media!  A wide selection of productions will be on display, from classics (such as the 1958 Czech "The Fabulous World of Jules Verne"), music videos (e.g. "Cup of Brown Joy", by Professor Elemental), to modern masterpieces (such as "The Danger Element" and "Child Invisible").


If you are fortunate enough to be in the Portland area, by all means pay a visit to the Rose City Steampunk Film Festival!  For more information, please visit... http://steampunkfilmpdx.com/



Davenport & Winkleperry are presenting a duo of events this weekend, in beautiful Pittsboro, NC!  Their first event, "My Broken Valentine", is, as they describe...

"...a multimedia mashup of burlesque, vaudeville, and music. Our lovely and talented performers come across time & space to bring you a rousing night of entertainment, wit, and dance that will have you cheering when you're not laughing, hooting when you're not hollering, or make you cry bitter tears into your drink!"

This event will be followed by The Clockwork Ball, a luxurious dance with a selection of Jazz, Blues, Swing, Cabaret, and dance music from times gone by (or never were)!  For more information, please do visit their website, at: http://www.davenportandwinkleperry.com/


The magnificent Unwoman and TyLean will be sharing the stage in Manchester, UK on the 12 for an outstanding performance of a musical delights!  For more information, please visit:
http://www.thesteampunkempire.com/events/a-night-of-cello-bows-and-3
http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=185225968173759
http://www.unpretention.info/


Finally, it appears that the nefarious "icon" of all that is bad, at least in Steampunk terms, has a birthday today.  After honoring Mssr. Verne, commonly accepted as one of the greatest authors of the Classic Steampunk period, Google has had to stoop to the bowls of hell, and spit out the curse word of "Edison".  Known for murdering innocent animals (e.g. elephants and dogs), stealing inventions from the greatest Steampunk minds (including Mr. Tesla, of course), and an all-around diabolical cad, one can read about his sordid life, "fluffed up" for those who do not know better!  I won't recommend it (as my dislike for this foul character is well known), but it is there, so I *suppose* I have a duty to mention it!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mr. Thomas Dolby to release Oceania - his first new album after 20 years!


Yet another of the modern icons of Steampunk is making news!  Mr. Thomas Dolby, who paid homage to Steampunk and Dieselpunk with his ground breaking album The Golden Age of Wireless, is set to release his new album, Map of the Floating City, this summer.  In an interview from his web-group, he says...

I'm writing with a couple of pieces of very interesting news.
Firstly, I've decided to release the 'Oceanea' EP commercially--i.e. to make it available for sale from March 28th to non-FES members as a CD and via iTunes. This is because the music from the EP has been getting some radio play in the US and UK. Despite only being available to a limited audience, there seems to be a growing interest in my new music in the media and the public at large. And your response to 'Oceanea' has been so overwhelmingly positive. I've rarely seen so many superlative fan reviews of a release. I evidently struck a nerve with this one! It's all good news and I'd be foolish not to take full advantage of it.

But now here's something truly exciting and extraordinary. There's been a change of strategy with regard to the proposed 3rd EP from the upcoming album. I have said from the beginning that I wanted to let fans hear my work-in-progress on the new album 'A Map Of The Floating City' by releasing three EPs prior to the album coming out. Well, for 'Urbanoia' I have decided to go one better....

For the last six months, I've been developing an online multiuser event entitled 'The Floating City.' Call it a game, if you will, but it's nothing like a typical computer game--it's more like a FESmagical mystery tour. It will take place for twelve weeks leading up to the full release of the album this summer. A segment takes place in the continent of Urbanoia, and that's where the party will be at when I'm ready to debut the songs from that segment. So you won't need to buy a download of the 'Urbanoia' EP; but to hear it, you'll need to play the game and find your way to the party. And that will be an intriguing journey unlike anything you've experienced.

Imagine a curious, post-apocalyptic parallel world. In the wake of a terrible planetary catastrophe, a few stunned survivors cling to what's left of the Earth's major landmasses. Technology has imploded, and all that's left are strewn relics of a former age. Trying to escape the boiling temperatures, tribes of humans take to the oceans in the ghostly hulls of abandoned ships. With no fuel available to power them, the vessels are only able to move across the sea by 'rafting up'. Inevitably, gridlock forms, and the Floating City is born. A bizarre trading culture emerges. And the residents begin to piece together the dark history of what led up to the disaster that hit their civilization.

As a player in the game, you'll be using familiar media like web pages, social networks, linking up with your friends from Twitterand Facebook, to meet and collaborate with others to solve the enigma of The Floating City. This is not only for gamers--nor is it only for Dolby fans. It's an easy and fun way to explore and enjoy my music and lyrics from the early 1980s all the way up to the present day.

I'm extremely excited about this project, and it's very much an extension of the atmosphere and sentiments of the songs on the new album. There are excellent graphics, done by Paul Sizer who art directed the two EPs (that's his charred map fragment at the top of this message.) It also combines into a single framework the lyrics and music from my entire back catalog, going all the wayback to 'The Golden Age Of Wireless.' It's a natural extension of the eccentricity of The Flat Earth Society, where over the years the frequent digression into Dolby-related fanfiction has been inspiring and bewildering!

There's been a lot of talk about the album's 'hidden theme', going back to the 'Amerikana' EP release last year. I can reveal that both EPs to date, along with the 'Toad Lickers' iPhone app, have contained embedded clues that relate to the whole Floating City enigma. Up to now, no-one seems to have been able to solve the riddles. (I wonder why?) This game will bring all those clues together in a fascinating way. And yes, you will still be able to hear the 'Urbanoia' songs...if you and your friends are able to discover them within the game. And if it's not to your taste, don't worry because all the music will appear on the album when it comes out later in the year.

It is not a competitive game, per se, because it's not about individual prowess or high scores. No single player can 'win' outright. However, nine tribes will collaborate and match their skills to try to solve the mystery of the Floating City, using their knowledge and understanding of the music and lyrics. There will be rewards for all participants, including free music, merch prizes, and a sneak peek at the songs you haven't heard yet. And for the most industrious tribe, there will be a fabulous top prize: an invitation to attend an exclusive private concert at which my band and I will perform the album in full.

There's a press release coming out shortly that announces the 'Oceanea' EP and mentions the game in passing. But I wanted to make sure FES members heard it from me first!
All the best,
Thomas

For those who remember his original works, its a great sign that he is "back in the game", so to speak!  For those who may not have had the opportunity to indulge in Mr. Dolby's work, I'd certainly recommend obtaining a copy of his first album (at least), perhaps pay a visit to a retrospective on his career, and perhaps pay a visit to his website, at http://www.thomasdolby.com/!


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Ballad of Mona Lisa, from Panic! at the Disco


Received a message this morning from Mr. A. Fogel, from the notorious League of S.T.E.A.M., who elaborates on Panic! At The Disco's newest video, The Ballad of Mona Lisa.  In it, he says...

Panic! At the Disco ‘s new music video “The Ballad of Mona Lisa” features a bold Steampunk aesthetic.  To create this unique look, the production collaborated with LA-based performance group The League of S.T.E.A.M., who are known for their elaborate Steampunk props and costumes.  In addition to providing pre-production design and story consultation, the group comprised nearly all of the background performers in the video, supplied featured props and gadgets, and outfitted several additional characters in bold Victorian-inspired fashion.  The League’s involvement throughout the many aspects of production helped to realize the authentic Steampunk atmosphere the band wanted.

Most certainly an outstanding video, and it encouraging to see a growing awareness of Steampunk continue to expand!  (After indulging in the aforementioned video, please do consider a visit to the League of STEAM!)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Happy Birthday, Jules Verne... compliments from Google!


One of the greatest icons of Steampunk celebrates his 183rd birthday today!  Mssr. Jules Verne, the legendary creative mind behind a vast quantity of Steampunk Classics, most notably 20,000 leagues under the Sea, is being recognized in one of the most innovative ways imaginable today!  Google has provided a unique header, which not only pays homage to his greatest novel, but even contains functionality!  If one plays with the lever to the right of the Google logo, the imagery in the sign will change, corresponding with either surfacing, diving, ahead, or backing bells!  So when you have to make your search on the world's most popular search engine, do take a moment to play with the controls!



Additionally, in my "personal" blog, the Steampunk Shipyard, I've listed a good number of links regarding the Father of Steampunk, from the the comprehensive storehouse of knowledge known as Voyages Extrarordinaire!  Mr. Gross' compendium certainly compliments  the existing body of knowledge!  To see the compilation, please visit the Steampunk Shipyard's entry, and remember to visit the Google links (choose the logo), after you finish playing with the controls!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Spinning the Compass, by The Dark Power


Quite fortunate to receive a lead to a new video from Mr. T. Slatter about a new release by The Dark Power, titled "Spinning the Compass"!  Rich with Steampunk visuals and allegory and filed at London's Crystal Palace Park, one can also see memorable works of art by Mr. J. Slatter (yes, it is his brother)!  Please do enjoy... then do pay a visit to his amazingly beauitful website, which provides insights, images and more from this cavalcade of Steampunk imagination, at: http://www.thedarkpower.com/.... then visit Mr. T. Slatter's locale for more information regarding his musical endeavor, at: http://www.tomslatter.co.uk/!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

An update of the Steampunk Links... and introducing the Steampunk Bazaar


I've been asked a few times as to why I haven't added one link or another to the Steampunk Tribune.  As Steampunk grows in popularity, the list of bloggers and associated websites has grown incremental as well.... to the point that I felt that a simple listing on a sidebar was a disservice to those beating the letters on their keyboards into submission.  I did have a list on one of the sides of this blog, but decided that after blogger provided more options for following blogs, I'd start a page dedicated to them - hence the Steampunk Links.

In addition to providing a list of blogs, I've tried to add topics that will be of interest to those in the wider Real Life Steampunk and Second Life Steampunk communities.  The in the center, I try to highlight regularly updated Steampunk blogs, including some longstanding stalwarts of the genre....

Airship Ambassador - The Airship Ambassador is an excellent site to learn the inner workings of the genre, with interviews with luminaries in the Steampunk community.  Mr. Steil's site quite literally has a pulse on the mover-and-shakers of the community, so to garner insights into Steampunk, a visit to the Airship Ambassador is a must!

Trial by Steam - Providing more coverage of Steampunk, Miss Flint provides yet more intriguing and up-to-date events and going ons documented on her blog.  I consider her website one of the best sources of information available in Steampunk.

The Traveller's Steampunk blog - If one is measured by their "competition", the Tribune certainly has much to measure up to!  With a more European view of the genre, the Traveller's Steampunk blog is regularly updated with news from around the world - another "must visit"!

Steampunk Fashion - Miss Evelyn's website is the ground zero location for the most popular topic in Steampunk.  Steampunk Fashion has extremely useful tips and advice for developing your own Steampunk attire, so if you're in the need of advice or inspiration, visit here!

A Caledonian Journey - The most regular virtual worlds blog is penned by Miss Rhianon Jameson, and is the most regularly updated Steampunk blog exclusive to the virtual world, specifically covering the Independent State of Caledon.  For those not familiar with Second Life, one could easily compare Caledon to a huge city, packed with Steampunk goodness, and she has taken up the challenge of ensuring its detailed coverage.

... just to name a few, and a few new additions to the blog...

The Steampunk Review - a new blog, I'm thinking it has plenty of promise in the months to come!

Warfare in the Age of Steam - Conflict is sadly universal, but Warfare in the Age of Steam provides an interesting insight into the the historical conflicts of the era.

Steam Machine "Barnum's Dream" - One man's dream to build a Steampunk work of art is being documented by Mr. Arteros, as he shows the progress towards the completion of his amazing steam engine!  It is amazing to watch is progress, so to learn more (and keep up to date), do pay the fellow a visit!

If I haven't mentioned a blog in specific, its only because there are so many good blogs to follow (so please don't be offended)!  I do try to keep the list updated with blogs that are updated regularly... if a blog falls to the wayside for lack of updates, for whatever reason, I'll move it to the side bar - regular life can often get in the way of blogging, but one can hope that the blog in question will return at some point!  I do keep a link to the Steampunk Links on the side bar, but... the link is also here... http://steampunk-links.blogspot.com/


And onto the "mystery" project!  When I was consolidating the Steampunk Facebook links, I noticed there were numerous sites that were, for lack of participation, or a better word... dead.  A pity, but circumstances do interfere with Steampunk (I suppose).  Additionally, as I searched for new Steampunk items for Esty, I was impressed with the number of stores which I had *no clue* about - mostly for a lack of advertisement, imo.  This gave me opportunity to consider... it would be convenient to have one place, where one could wander about (as in a bazaar), and discover new stores, groups, events, or whatever might be, all in one place.



So... I'm giving it a try.  The Steampunk Bazaar is my newest project, an attempt to provide an informal location where just about anything Steampunk-related can be listed (for free)... and discovered by others.  If you are interested in having your own blog/regular store/Esty Store//Musical Group/Convention/event/ect... added, the basic guide will be as follows....

1) The endeavors must be related to Steampunk.  Seems like a simple criteria, but with the ... flexibility... in which Steampunk can be interpreted, I'd like to keep to a simple definition of Steampunk, as per Wikipedia.  If something is questionable, please email me about it.

2) I will need an image (275 pixels by 275 pixels) and a web address.  That's all.  If you have something unique that Blogger will accept (and in those dimensions), please contact me regarding it.

3) A reasonable amount decorum will be used on the images - no graphic nudity, no questionable endeavors, even if they are related to Steampunk (e.g. such as adult toys, with a Steampunk theme).  

4) I'll be reviewing links every so often to cull dead links from it - if it is dead, I'll pull it.  However, it its simply inactive for a bit, I'll be more than happy to post it again!

Aside from these few requests, I'll try to be accommodating to Steampunk enthusiasts as possible - after all, the goal is to promote the many threads of Steampunk.  I will exercise final discretion on requests to the Bazaar.  If interested, please send an email to TheSteampunkTribune@yahoo.com - I hope to have it finalized by the end of February.

(Additionally, if your endavor is already posted, and you wish a change to it, again, please contact me at TheSteampunkTribune@yahoo.com to make a change!)