I'm a little late on the with this one, but I've been busy working on the last bits of the film shoot (photos for that to come soon, too), so I haven't had the energy to write or pay attention to LJ. Back in late March, I went with much trepidation to the Nova Albion Steampunk Exhibition
. I say with trepidation because the theme this year was "Wild, Wild East" which is a theme and idea that is rife
with problems. There were a few things here and there that lead me to believe that they might handle the theme with some manner of respect (and fun), but as I had feared, much of it was handled very flippantly. It is a shame because in the Bay Area, there are a WEALTH of cultural resources of artists/performers/historians/cultural and sci-fi nerds/steampunks who are Asian who could have contributed and made this more Asian-inspired Steampunk. There was nothing on the Chinese Exclusion Act, which is completely relevant to this theme, and most things were still framed within the Victorian mindset and lens looking Eastward to the "otherlands". In so many ways, it was just fail, fail, fail.
Nonetheless, I went for a number of reasons: 1) I was working with the St. Clair Aeronauts
again, whose company I always enjoy; 2) I wanted the opportunity to meet in person a few people whom I really respected but only knew of in an online capacity, fantasyecho
, and James Ng
; and it afforded me the opportunity to spend copious amounts of time with my dear friends Mo
and Essandra. I also got to spend a decent amount of time chatting with jadecat9
, neither of whom I had seen in person since Nova Albion the previous year (which is something I need to not do again because they're awesome and I am very fond of them.)
All told, I did have a great time (mostly because of certain people I met), and I got some photos of people I like and some of the cool stuff that was actually there. The full photo set is here on Flickr: Nova Albion Steampunk Exhibition
I'm also going to post a few here for your viewing pleasure. There is also a very nice recap of the convention was written here by Kevin Steil, aka the Airship Ambassador: Airship Ambassador: Nova Albion Recap
Also, I'm honoured that Beyond Victoriana
has used some of my photography in their convention round-up: Convention Extravaganza–Reporting from Nova Albion: The Wild, Wild East
On with the show!St. Clair Aeronauts
got a pretty big space in the vending hall this year, so we decided to take advantage of that space and create a Victorian Tea Parlour.
We spent weeks scheming to scrounge up our various bits of furniture and tea ware in order to make this happen, and I would say that it was met with much success. Because there were few people who wrote letters last year while we were run completely ragged with the Aetheric Message Machine's telegrams, we decided to relax more this year and create a comfortable space where we would also do most of the letter writing ourselves for fun and mayhem.
We had various tea services, and while they were mostly for us, we also happily offered tea, cookies, and sundry snacks to other con-goers who decided to hang out at our "booth."( Onward to silly letters and fancy costumes )