I'm so late in doing the con report that some of the beautiful details are lost. ;_;
Oklahoma Steampunk Exposition 2011
A coworker and I decided to drive to the only local steampunk convention available, one in Oklahoma. We amusingly talked the entire time to . . . and oddly were served by people with my same name at both the burger joint adjoined to a gas station AND the hotel lobby staff member. o_O We tried to find a cheaper room than the actual hotel and found the Oklahoma City ghetto . . . there were just piles of random rubble and crap in front of lawns and REALLY run down area . . . and with our tails between our legs, we wandered back to the actual hotel, lol. There was a Best Western nearby but it was full 'cause of a stupid school dance or something.
Anyway the first then we saw at the con was a burlesque show. Yuuup, that was the correct setting for the event. My friend coined the phrase, "new experiences, interesting sights" hahaha. Okay, but for real, while the con was exceptionally small as this is its FIRST year, it was just amazing. I love steampunk and I want to say it was like 90-95% cosplay as many people into steampunk often not only have costumes, but characters that live in that world. It was odd talking to some of the artists setting up as I'm so used to being ONE of them setting up, rather than on the other side. But there were some great things. The dealer's room was pretty rockin', too.
I think the biggest thing I really enjoyed is just how...atmospheric it is? A totally different vibe from an anime con. The dealer's booths were set up more like individual displays/tables. I regret, REGRET not asking to take pics of their display (as I know it urks many fellow artist alleyway peeps), but it was just . . . really awesome. The first major booth when you walk in has this HUGE heavy/ornate almost Roccoco inspired frame (glass taken out) with various wares on display inside against a fabric covered board. There were many things on display that helped build a sense of that particular shop and their wares that contrasts with, say, an anime con (where displays are about jamming as many prints and stuff as physically possible). It was so refreshingly different. Of course the price points for items is higher than an anime con as much of what was for sale were hand crafted or otherwise unique works, often with found objects or more expensive materials. Tons of fun.
Some of the panels and the like were a little lackluster but it's still new and growing. The genre itself is growing exceptionally and explosively, but there aren't too many tv series or movies to fill up the video room like an anime con can. We did sit in on some hardcore diy guys, although I personally felt a bit annoyed that they were so anti modded mavericks. Yeah, they're the "entry way"/"basic" steampunk thing. But you can mod pre-made guns into very nice works without having to build them from scratch. Sorry that I don't want to go out and own a band saw and weld crap together to make MY steampunk accessories 100% diy. >_< Otherwise, quite informative.
Also saw a cool show by the name of Cut Thrust and Run. That was cool. Also one of the guys looked like my friend's husband...it was a little weird. I managed to make it to the female cosplay contest and the judges did ask about what was all on my belt. To stand out from so many pilots, I made claim as a Navigator of the Skies (of COURSE it's RP...like I could get anyone successfully to their destination). Didn't win but that was a fun ending point.
Well, reading a few other people's reviews were less than steller. Apparently the con was poorly run to say the very least and many big acts just weren't properly booked and were thus dropped but still advertised as being there. Also, I read (as an after the fact) that Cherie Priest was there...I could have my Boneshaker signed. D:< So it goes. Our experience wasn't bad, but I could tell there was definite lack of organization, I just didn't realize how bad it was for all the vendors, I feel for ya'. In case any of ya'll are at all interested in other reviews (I'm sure you're on the edge of your seats), some of them are here: Geek Details review and Convention Fans.
MANY pictures were taken. Once I figure out this...disturbingly hilarious issue with flickr and I'll upload them. We only went for Saturday, so we drove up Friday night and stayed a night then drove back Saturday night. Apparently the entire con was . . . a learning experience for the vendors (who may have regretted it) and the con organizers (who will learn from this). I hope it'll grow from this, eat its con wheaties and become an actual steampunk convention that we midwest/central peeps can (proudly) claim our own.
Project A-kon 2011...
I think I'm still on the waitlist. Which means unless the con gods are merciful, I'm probably not gonna have a table this year. Still hopeful, though. I'll probably go to hit up the steampunk events and to hang out with artist peoples I only see at cons. I'm probably going to also participate in unicorn wackiness, because I am a follower.
I'm still preparing some stuff just in case, though. 'cause you gotta boyscout that and always be prepared. Working on some steampunk jewelry and modded guns. I'm thinking a modded maverick in the same vein as my purple modded Maverick but with brass and red. If I get a table or part of a table, I hope I can sell it. <3 And it'll go to a good home. I'm taking pictures at each major step to put together a quick mod guide, in case anyone is interested. There are a LOT of good references out there already (that's how I did mine), but I figure I'll add to the glut out there. *laugh* Also, one of these days I'll set up my etsy account to sell my steampunk goodies.
Props to everyone who are confirmed to go and hopefully there will be new exciting things for sale by people where this will be their first A-kon.
G'luck to everyone who submitted to the San Japan mega art contest. Hopefully one of us can represent our AA-of-Texas group of artists down in San Antonio.
Also, lots of lubs to everyone for the weekly get together. I love having people over and having fun with everyone. Hope ya'll enjoy it as well.
Art Trade in progress with: (D: I'm sorry I got distracted by the costume!)
Current dA status: a hot mess
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