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Steampunk Digest - December 18, 2020
Our weekly roundup of news and other happenings in the steampunk world
Friday, December 18, 2020
Reminder: Steampunk Digest is on a biweekly publishing schedule for December due to the holidays. The next issue will appear on Dec. 31.
Netflix has released a trailer for Part 3 of Disenchantment, and it appears that Princess Bean will be making a return visit to Steamland, the steampunk city introduced in last year’s episode “The Electric Princess.” This time, “Bean must step up her princess game amid royal plots, deepening mysteries, King Zøg’s increasing instability and concerns about who will rule Dreamland,” Netflix says.
The animated comedy series, created by Matt Groening, could be described as “Game of Thrones meets Futurama.” In this medieval fantasy world, Steamland represents the pinnacle of technological achievement, but “there’s a power in Dreamland beyond anything we have here,” the country’s leader tells the princess as he proposes an alliance between science and magic.
The new season will premiere Jan. 15 on Netflix.
Carlex Design is a company in Poland that creates custom-themed interiors and exteriors for automobiles, and one of its specialties is steampunk. Shown above are the Steampunk Editions of the Mini Countryman (top) and Mercedes-AMG G63. The Mercedes model, which required 5200 hours of work, features a copper roof cover “on which jewelers and designers engraved a gigantic relief with steampunk motifs,” explains Carlex founder Damian Skotnicki. In the Mini, “we have installed gears, clocks, and other elements, alluding to Herbert George Wells’s time machine.” That project took nine months.
The company provided a gallery’s worth of photos that we plan to include in an upcoming feature. Until then, we wanted to share these as a preview. Learn more on the Carlex website.
The Steampunk Explorer has planted a flag on CosMos World, a new social network dedicated to cosplay culture and fandom, including steampunk. You can think of it as Facebook for geeks, but without the “politics, noise or invasive algorithms,” says organizer Haylar Garcia.
Lee Presson is a man of many talents. Steampunk fans know him as the leader of Lee Presson and the Nails, “The Craziest Swing Band on the West Coast.” But at the Great Dickens Christmas Fair, he also presents readings in the guise of Edgar Allan Poe. This year, as part of Dickens Fair At Home, he offered a memorable rendition of “The Telltale Heart” that you can watch on YouTube. And if you’d like more Lee Presson, check out this performance by his band at the 2017 Clockwork Alchemy steampunk convention.
The Edwardian Ball is a January tradition in San Francisco, but as with so many other events, the organizers have been compelled to adjust. “While it is nearly certain that we will not be gathering in January 2021 in our typical fashion, we will most definitely not let a year slip by without some measure of Edwardian revelry,” they state on the website. In the meantime, they’re hosting a virtual Holiday Bazaar featuring independent artists who sell handcrafted wares at the event, including some with steampunk-inspired garb. It runs through mid-January.
If you’re within airship distance of San Francisco, you can sign up to get news about plans for next year. And if you’re feeling nostalgic about past Edwardian Balls, see our coverage from the 2020 and 2019 events.
You have one more opportunity to catch Frenchy and the Punk in a virtual concert this year, as they’ll be performing live on Saturday, Dec. 19 from Batfrogs HQ in New York. They previously played on Dec. 16 in a set timed for North American audiences. Saturday’s show is scheduled for 8 p.m. London time. Tickets are available on a ‘Pay what you want/Donation’ basis. You can get them via the Batfrogs website.
The Walden Font Co., purveyor of historical fonts, has released “The Art Nouveau Printshop Volume One,” a package of 12 typefaces and nine dingbat fonts inspired by the Jugendstil art movement of late 19th century Germany. This follows the earlier release of “The New Victorian Printshop,” consisting of three volumes of fonts and clipart based on Victorian-era print materials.
The company is a one-person venture led by Oliver Weiss, who began creating fonts in the mid-1990s as a hobby. He starts by collecting old print materials, which he scans at high resolution. Then he converts the type into vectors and imports the character forms into a font editor for fine-tuning. His bestseller so far is “The Wild West Press,” inspired by fonts from the Old West. He’s also created font packages based on materials from the U.S. Civil War, Revolutionary War, World War II, 1920s Germany, Medieval and Renaissance eras, and more.
Many of his customers are professional designers, including those who work on TV shows and movies. Fonts from “The New Victorian Printshop” can be seen in Good Omens on Amazon Prime Video and in the Harry Potter spinoff movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The website includes a gallery of artwork featuring his fonts.
“The Art Nouveau Printshop Volume One” costs $49.95 for a personal use license and $99.95 for a business use license. A personal use license allows you to install the fonts on up to three computers that you personally own. Learn more on the website.
Odd poem: 19th century Science Fiction by Tennyson (Form in Formless Times)
Tips on How to Write a World with a Dieselpunk Aesthetic (WorldBuilding 101)
Is Steampunk Better Than Cyberpunk? – Slightly Civil War (Escapist Magazine)
Film Review: Journey to the Center of the Earth (1989) (Film Threat)
Doctor Who: Ranking Each NuWho Christmas Special (WhatCulture)
Moreau’s island of disasters (Fergus Falls Journal)
Steampunk Tower 2 Review (MyGamer)
Biomass Review — Saber’s Edge (Sick Critic)
12 Days of Virtual Victorian Christmas (Buffalo Rising)
Rare 9-armed octopus found off Japan coast (Live Science)
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