|Posted by Lee A. Farruga on October 20, 2012 at 6:10 AM|
Waaay back in January, 2010 well known UK steampunk Major Thaddeus Tinker put out a post on the well known forum Brass Goggles asking if anyone would be interested in a "hard copy full colour magazine aimed at the growing steampunk community". Over the last two years his vision has been tweeked, discussed and mulled over. At the same time, many many bits of information on steampunk culture from around the world have been gathered and slowly pieced together into The Steampunk Gazette. Editor in Chief Major Tinker and his crew of researchers have produced a glorious, colourful magazine style hardcover book. The end result is beyond his original vision and everyone's imaginings of what was being put together.
It is an organized jumble of gorgeous rich colour photos and information on such a huge range of topics it is terribly hard to read from front to back. I found myself flipping through various areas and back again like a dog with too many toys.
It is very much an international piece of work. There are pages and persons from around the world gracing not only every section, but its cover as well. I am very proud to say that Canada has its own page (21), Steampunk Canada has a mention under Social Networking on page 233, and we have many individual Canadians throughout.
Let's begin with the cover. On it you will find the wonderful work of Canadian fashion designer Meg Pehlke of Spyder Designs. You will also find her showcased on page 46 under Ladies' Dress Trends. On the cover as well is little baby Luna of Montreal, shown in her stroller and steampunk outfit made by her parents who are the artists of Sebbal and Zoluna. Little Luna can also be seen on page 237 under Up To Steam with The Family.
On page 48 in the introduction of this section, Around Asia, the lovely and outspoken Jaymee Goh's website Silver Goggles has a mention. (while not technically Canadian, Jaymee has been adopted as an honoury Canadian steampunk)
The very talented and stylish Daniel Proulx of Catherinette Rings has his work featured on pages 81 under Jewelry and Watches, as well as page 159 under Installations and Sculpture.
You can also find the work of west coast artists Kyle Miller of Thin Gypsy Thief Studios (pages 169 and 170) under Musical Instruments, and Ian Finch-Field of SkinzNhydez (page 69) under Gentlemen's Vests.
There is even mention of our homegrown webseries Riese on page 179 under the great title Cinematic and Televisual Entertainment.
Two of my favourite Canadians are even more prominent in this publication. Our very own scholarly steampunk, Mike Perschon, is under Scholars and Critics with an article about him as The Steampunk Scholar on page 153 at the beginning of Chapter 8 - Culture. As well, he contributed a whole page to the Gazette. It can be found at page 193 - Academe by Mike Perschon. It contains a fine bibliography of academic articles.
The second prominent Canadian found within is Roger Wood, creator of Klockwerks. He has an incredible two page spread (pages 92 and 93). I love the title - Canadian Clockwork Maestro Extraordinaire. It is a fabulous interview with this talented artist and a number of great photos, including a photo of him holding one of his pieces.
As you can see, we are well represented. I am quite pleased with the number of Canadians featured in this edition. However, it is only the first. There are already plans in the work for a second volume.
This is a book one can read for hours and come back for more. It is a steampunk book you will want to pass down to your children. A book you can proudly point at and say "this is what we do". THIS is Steampunk! I highly recommmend this book, whether you are steampunk or not. It is beautiful and informative and quite simply an heirloom quality book.