The Crossroads of the Aether
“Then Martine said: "So you will be poor now all your life, Babette?"
Poor?" said Babette. She smiled as if to herself. "No, I shall never be poor. I told you that I am a great artist. A great artist, Mesdames, is never poor. We have something, Mesdames, of which other people know nothing.”
― Karen Blixen, “Babette’s Feast”
Nearing the point of which there is a near agreeable turn of another year there is cause to update this shared relation herein, as to engaging the larger aspects of steampunk worldwide as well as personal interactions with the local Cincinnati and regional Tri-State Leagues expansive bearing or otherwise close gathering together under the aforesaid following conjunction in my particular environs.
To those participants who may be unfamiliar with my enigmatic avatar in this electronic Empire there is a tendency for a formidable amount of verbiage to be conducted around the various odd obsessions that have drawn this variant persona onto this peculiar site. These abundantly worded replies or reviews undertaken may be read as absurd to overwrought entries or be a cause of mistaken umbrage, with of course those who decide to ignore much- if not all of- such lengthy exchanges altogether.
In broad reflection, since my time here it has been my good fortune that many other participants have thoughtfully responded to these scattered curiosities herein and elsewhere that lean toward literary pursuits, including those sometimes bastardized or bawdy picture books often derided as comic books, with additional forays into fashion, film, fantastic illustrations, or other modes of visual art. While collectively called steampunk in a round manner, there is an expansive difference according to individual interpretation of what constitutes inclusive consideration under this rather bizarre banner. Indeed, this extensive debate upon this strange compilation is frequently a cause of fiery contention, sometimes leading to prolonged divisions or eventual deep fissures resulting. The unusual combination of steampunk however appears to permit a wider admittance than most other collective ensembles or mixed groups that with the increasing expansion continue to attract a multiethnic audience from around the world. From my access here, the exposure to further diverse viewpoints has expanded my personal perspectives while continuing to encourage deliberation and experimentation through ongoing written reviews or directly applied aesthetic projects.
While endeavors continue to clear my past cloudy or limited range goggles toward the continuing fluid intermixtures adapted of this anomalous collection called steampunk- that has so rousingly resurfaced- it is acknowledged that there is remaining fondness for the past printed productions, especially those pamphlet monthlies often re-collected as graphical novels. Furthermore, the addressed outrageous reach upon what constitutes steampunk most certainly conspires to stretch beyond what many may protest is preposterous as it often goes too far outside of a reasonable allowance. No doubt the array conceived or reconsidered through my outlook by various outlets will be found to be ridiculous or unseemly to some who have a counter opinion of what is duly representative of steampunk. Of this parting particularity it is welcomed as additional differences from which to draw and reflect, with no pushing prescriptivism from my erratic output meant at any time to be implacably upheld.
In terms of misty vision, the advance of years, combined with many hours minutely drawing are beginning to take their toll on this mature frame. Alas, this self-imposed scribe and scribbler, though occasionally willfully taking a prescribed tonic at a arranged gathering with the local Cincinnati or regional Ohio Steampunks, is usually desperately at the drawing board or portable computation device. If not otherwise engaged with these proclivities, this ‘old aesthetic hand’ is consciously occupied at a premier art gallery, along with gleeful outings or welcomed free time with my delightful daughter. While there is an effort to actually interact with the surrounding Steampunks of the monthly salons and various other activities, wherefrom some are fitting to invite my daughter, other responsibilities and interests keep me otherwise occupied in my atelier.
As to the worldwide or nearby conventions, wherein many are widely met monetary constraints unfortunately limit my range of travel in that purpose, though it is a longer range goal to attend. Concerning the close acquaintances’ and companions that formatively began this ethereal realm while establishing the Cincinnati Steampunks, they- along with the protracted enthusiasts hailing from the Tri-State area- continue to be a refreshing mixture of like-minded people that reflect a constant anticipated source of active correspondence.
Physically in Cincinnati with a aspired universal vision embraced-