I’ve been thinking about what this whole Steampunk thing is and I still haven’t gotten a handle on it. But anything that brings together such a wide range of artists, makers, and fans has got to be good. Is there any other hobby that will bring you email from HAM radio operators, Bay Area sculptors, European train buffs, Seattle musicians, media reporters, alternative energy tinkerers, clockmakers, goth fashion designers, literary agents, telegraphers, Scottish printmakers, LA fashion photographers, British narrow boat dwellers, and so many more? I think not!
One such email arrived this morning from Suzanne R Forbes, a Berkeley artist who has created a work the embodies three of my most favorite memes! In addition the painting (and Suzanne!) will be at Maker Faire next week and will ultimately be auctioned off to benefit one of those favorites, the Electronic Frontier Foundation. The exercise of determining the other two favorites is left to the reader.
Prints are currently on sale at her Etsy store and $10 of each sale goes to benefit the EFF. Be sure to look for Suzanne, the EFF and the rest of us SteamPunks at Maker Faire next week!
Miss Eva G posed for me in her SOMA loft, dressed in her own fabulous steampunk finery, with an antique crossbow she brought back from China. The painting took several sittings with Miss E and then many hours of work painting in the detailed background. She is defending early implements of the computer revolution, Jacquard punch cards and IBM cards, a CDV of Ada Byron, and Charles Babbage’s Difference Engine No. 2. An apple core represents Turing, eaten up by the intolerance of his era. Also prominently displayed are some wonderful modern creations- The Steampunk Laptop by Datamancer and the Steampunk Flatpanel and Keyboard by Jake Von Slatt- who were kind enough to allow me use their work in the painting. The packet-sniffing rat under the desk is a nod to the EFF’s most recent victory; the EFF logo appears among the luggage stickers on the trunk. I added the bullet shells at the last minute when I learned that Miss E. is a crack shot.