A "mirror mirror" version of Steampunk
Recently I posted the following picture on our local Steampunk community's Facebook page.
My comment on it was "At least she is wearing her goggles!" which was meant to be ironic, because it is very rare to see Steampunks actually wearing their goggles!
Some were critiquing her badly adjusted cutting torch, others suggested that perhaps her safety gear was insufficient... One comment attracted my attention for two reasons, first it missed the intended irony entirely and second it said, "Not even sure why it was posted as it is in no way Steampunk related."
For this poster missing the ironic point was not a surprise, however the second point got me thinking. This picture is not Steampunk in the traditional sense, BUT it illustrates several Steampunk aesthetic elements that are worthy of comment. The elements are displayed in the negative, much like the "Mirror Mirror" episode of Classic Star Trek!
For starters there is the obvious element of the goggles actually being used as I mentioned. Then the lack of any overt Victorian dress, no corset, no lace, no leather, no brass, not even a hat.
Being inappropriately dressed for a dangerous activity such as welding or cutting is pretty common in Steampunk imagery so in this sense it is not an opposite, although exposing this much skin when doing so is and would definitely run a foul of the local O.H. and S. inspectors!
The gritty industrial setting is common in Steampunk, but this one has no gears, no gauges, no steam even.
It is an interesting counterpoint to our "standard" Steampunk industrial imagery. So in that sense I think it works as a Steampunk illustration.
After all who didn't think that this version of Spock was a more interesting one?
Keep your sightglass full, your firebox trimmed and your water iced.