Steampunk artist Will Blight turns the visions and imaginative style of futuristic Victorian technology into reality. The former postman from Dorset builds wearable steampunk props and costumes so realistic he draw gasps from the crowds who regularly greet Will at shows across the country.
Here is Will’s take on the steampunk phenomenon;
Steampunk is a speculative alternative history/future based in the Victorian style. This has the interesting effect of meaning different things to different people. You’ll never see the same costume/gun/gadget twice. In fact, you probably won’t hear the same definition twice of what Steampunk is, either!
Steampunk is different to the traditional re-enactment, where clothing, technology and personal artifacts have to be correct to the time period being portrayed. It allows the combination of the style and period costume of the Victorian era with the creativity of science fiction extrapolated from the design and style of that era.
Although the term ‘Steampunk’ wasn’t coined until the late nineteen-eighties, it can still be seen in the works of H.G. Wells and Jules Verne to name but two. Plus, it takes the concept further with more and different aspects to it such as; time travel, airship pirates, endless gadget inventions, the ‘post-apocalyptic’ Steampunk era and, in fact, anything that the individual can dream up. A future based on copper and brass, wood and glass, steam and clockwork.
There is also a thriving music scene too and that too covers everything from heavy rock to folk to the Victorian style rappers of Professor Elemental or Mr B the Gentleman Rhymer.
I, myself have built a ‘Time Gun’ (a rifle type gun with the necessary brass, wood and clockwork parts) and a personal Victorian rocket backpack. I’m already working on another gun and a personal backpack wings contraption.
Although the concept of Steampunk is different for different people, there is always the steadying factors that run through all of Steampunk; politeness, elegance, gadgets, top hats, waistcoats for the men and corsets for the ladies – and, of course, the goggles! If you see someone wearing a top hat with goggles on it, it’s a fair bet they’re a Steampunk.
NB. Children are known as Coglings and teenagers are Steamagers!