I am truly a sucker for Steampunk as an aesthetic. Just a glance around my office reveals multiple gear or steam-related items.
I’ve also had a yen for gear driven watches. Multiple pocket watches have come and gone (not really gone, more gathering dust on the shelf). Most never quite live up to the functionality promised by Victorian mechanization. Probably because they were made by modern hands instead of crafted by artisans. Regrettably, I end up with battery driven wrist watches that don’t look as sleek, but function none the less.
Still, my heart belongs to gears.
That’s why when I discovered All Natural Arts by Susan Beatrice, I was hooked. One look at the amazing work she’s done and you’ll slaver yourself into a Steampunk coma.
Here are some of my favorites:
This is called The Beast of the Machine. The front view is extraordinary, but then take a look at it from an angle. You’ll see how Beatrice has built this image up, so it’s more sculpture than simply a flat illustration.
This Steampunk Bunny has been crafted out of clock parts. Of course. What else would you use to fashion such an exquisite animal. I particularly like the curved pieces that makeup the ears.
At first glance this appears to be a simple, albeit amazing, dragon sculpture placed inside a pocket watch case. But when you open it up…
The dragon rotates and now you can see the flames shooting out. Astounding. I particularly like the chain that keeps the dragon tethered to the watch case as if it might fly away at any moment.
Beatrice has many more Steampunk creations, along with illustrations and fairies. Go ahead and check out All Natural Arts for yourself. All of her art is for sale.
Anyone who loves steampunk also falls into the vintage lot. It’s natural. Vintage and retro items just pull me back to a time when things were done by hand. The ornate scroll work and brass give me the warm fuzzies. I even have a board dedicated to this obsession on Pinterest. Then I chanced upon my vintage Valhalla: a blog called Vintage Me Oh My. This site is every retro fan’s dream.
The photo above shows vintage metal locks and skeleton keys. There’s even a double-lock!
The proprietor of this glorious site is one Megan Cummins, a graphic designer from San Francisco. She calls her site “online crack” for vintage goodness. And I’d have to agree. I just can’t stop scrolling through it.
An example of some vintage goods you can purchase through a friend’s site.
Traveling through her blog is like a trip through time. You loose yourself in the things that once were.
A forgotten casino sign.
There’s a melancholy feeling that wells up inside me when I see these images. Some of them are so lonely and forgotten. Yet there’s warmth too.
These vintage style Ralph Lauren hang tags were found by Workingformorework, who compiled a set of images on their blog.
You may notice that Megan doesn’t photograph these items herself. Instead she finds or solicits stunning pictures from others. She’s a sort of clearinghouse of vintage. Like something, then click over to the original site to view more.
A letter from the Civil War, located at The Carter House in Franklin, TN.
Take a look for yourself and get your vintage fix satisfied.
I had the extreme pleasure of watching Iron Sky the other night. My wife surprised me by buying tickets through Tugg. The experience more than delivered on my expectations. I’d heard about Iron Sky more than a year ago. The logline is this: “Nazi’s create a moonbase in 1945. In 2018, then return to invade earth.” What I didn’t know going into the movie, was how funny it would be.
The current President of the United States is a thinly veneered Sarah Palin. Her reelection campaign concept is to send a black astronaut to the Moon (the tagline is: Black to the Moon). Little did she know that Nazis have been holing up on the dark side. You can imagine the shock when the Nazis remove James Washington’s helmet to see a brother.
Although the film plays fast and loose with race, it does take on the task of portraying both the Nazis and James Washington seriously. At one point, the Nazi’s use an Albinoizer to transform him white.
The technology the Nazis use looks astounding. A combination of 1940 tech with diesel-punk. The filmmakers actually make the idea of Nazis living on the Moon for 73 years plausible.
The amazing attack using meteorblitzkrieg
The massive Gotterdammerung spaceship (powered by an iPad)
This is a must see film. Truly a Blazing Saddles for this generation. However, unless you can Tugg it to your theater, you might have to wait for video.
Even though I live in the same city as the San Diego Comic Con, I still treat it as a vacation. Thus, vacation spending. I give myself a budget and then spend every penny of it. Here are some stand out items (and where to find them) on the Exhibition Floor.
The first booth I plopped cash down was “Fuzzy Balls Apparel”. Yes, clever name. They were responsible for the hand sewn apple and the “eye” flower (which is actually a hair clip). You can find them at booth 4839. Another of my favorite booths is Conduct Happiness (booth 4832), home of the Pea, as in “pea in the pool” or the “pea pea dance.” I picked up another hair clip for my daughter here. The stuffed Frankenstein was from The Bijou Collectibles (booth C-01). I can’t recall where I picked up the stuffed kitty.
I’m always a sucker for steampunk and no one does it better than Weta (booth 3513B). I picked up yet another fabulous book from Dr. Grordbort. This year, it was Triumph, Unnecessarily Violent Tales of Science Adventure for the Simple and Unfortunate – written and illustrated by Greg Broadmore. I grabbed the last Berry Ninja apron (for kids). I can’t recall the booth, but I do know it was right next to Fuzzy Balls Apparel. Finally, the small book you see is “Wonderland Alphabet” giving each letter an Alice in Wonderland twist. This was from Archaia Entertainment (booth 2635). I just read this book to my daughter. It really goes deep into both Alice Books (Wonderland and Looking Glass).
I’m love T-shirts, but I detest the standard black or white fair. Snap T-shirts (I can’t locate the booth number, but it was near artist’s alley). This guy hand screens the shirts himself. Hard to see in this picture, but the shirt is a burgundy color. The book is called “So Good for Little Bunny” by Brandi Milne. This was from a combo booth with Griz Grimley and other artists (this might be booth 501). Finally the Frankenstein is a “Kooky Kans” from Mixo (booth 4633).
Enjoy the comic con and remember, there are ATMs in the lobby.