Dieselpunk + Steampunk Culture

Cyberpunk and Steampunk are all big, the latter one being even bigger. Dieselpunk's kind of a new player in this -punk game, though it has a great deal of potential. If it has so, and that's a surefire, why hasn't it been acclaimed worldwide yet?

Aesthetics of this movement have been around for quite some time now, breaking through to the popculture with characters like Rocketeer or Captain America to name few. Still, the way I see it, people don't associate them with Dieselpunk, because they simply aren't familiar with such term. It lacks the promotion.

Therefore I call all Dieselpunks! We should stand up and do something about it. And by "something" I mean bringing it up on sites like Reddit - the burgeoning social site, which has both steam and cyber communities growing strong. If we take care of Dieselpunk subreddit (here you have it, folks: http://www.reddit.com/r/Dieselpunks/) by taking actions like making some eye-catching design, supplying it with new materials it all might yield huge results. Facebook page is an important thing as well. Additionally I'm running a diesel-focused series of lectures during this year's Lodz fantasy and sci-fi convention. But hey, these are just my ideas, I bet you've got plenty others on your mind. Share them. Act out. Prosper!

Over and out.

Views: 307

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Great work, sir! Thanks for your service to the community!


I think what we're seeing is simple apathy.  The trend is burning downhill and the masses are content to sit and wait for the next big thing to be shoved in their eyes.  It's rare to see anyone contribute these days, even if they're rabid about the aesthetic.  Do these people not see that every effort, no matter how small, is a push in the right direction?

Winter is over.  Let's heat this place up.

I like winter...

But yes, I see that more needs to be done to bring this aesthetic to the masses. I am a founding member of my local steam/dieselpunk group and of our local chapter of Toy Soldiers, but these groups are small and have pretty much the same roster.  We are currently brainstorming ideas to get the word out and hold events for the public.

Any ideas from you fine gents?

Depending on your area, scheduling a dieselpunk "meet up" at a local car show should be a fun, no-pressure activity.  

This way, even if the dieselpunk's family or SO isn't into our stuff, they still have other things to look at.  Plus, people who restore cars are typically in love with the period their cars came from, so not only will you find some great photo ops, but you might make some new friends in the process.

Thanks Tome, great idea. There are a few vintage car groups out here, and there is a show almost every weekend.

Tome Wilson said:

Depending on your area, scheduling a dieselpunk "meet up" at a local car show should be a fun, no-pressure activity.  

This way, even if the dieselpunk's family or SO isn't into our stuff, they still have other things to look at.  Plus, people who restore cars are typically in love with the period their cars came from, so not only will you find some great photo ops, but you might make some new friends in the process.

Nice to see you folks chatting around here!

@Tome - I agree apathy may be the case. Seeing how big steam and cyberpunk are may lead some people to an utterly false conclusion, that there may be no possible way to promote diesel era aestethics firmly enough. Heretics, I sayeth! As long as there are people standing for this bona fide setting, it will prosper.

I think we lack a hunger as a group, because our activities are a lot more street legal and far more accessible than steampunk and cyberpunk events.  We can fulfill our social addictions at car shows, dance events, speakeasy bars, book releases, neo-swing band performances, art shows, costume groups, etc. but we don't have a central DIESELPUNK MEGA-EVENT 2014 that combines all of these things in one spot.

Besides the "cool" factor, is there a need for a central event (especially given the distribution of our fans), or would our efforts be better rewarded by promoting these branch events a little more so they're not as underground?

Oh, I wouldn't say our events are any more street legal than steampunk ones. Cyber - I concur - but steam is as gentle as we are, therefore besides fashion that for majority is far too archaic, victorian era events are approachable for public as well.

Speaking about being gentle: since we are inherently linked with savoir vivre and sensibilities of the period, and simultaneously since websites such as Art of Manliness promote lifestyle associated with early to mid 20th century, why wouldn't we contact them and call our brothers in arms? I suppose both sites could benefit from such friendly partnership.

Back to you, Tome: Huge events, like Steamcon are out of our reach at the moment, as we are too few and we're basicly scattered all around the globe. That's why holding a whole bunch of events is more crucial than working on just one. This way everyone interested could take part in some party taking place fairly nearby.

"Street Legal" to me means, "won't draw attention."  For example, if I'm dressed in a tailored 1930s suit and I'm next to Geary McSteampunk with his tophat, goggles, and Victorian overcoat, then Geary McSteampunk is going to stand out more.  He's more "marketable" as a thing than I would be.  But at the same time, I can find more activities that pertain to my interests as a steampunk.

Speakeasies are trendy.  Jazz music never goes out of style.  Electroswing is becoming strong enough to elicit its own club nights in certain cities.  Dressing in suits is encouraged in most formal settings.  It's only when we go towards the more eccentric cosplay spectrum (like the steampunks) that we start to limit our entertainment options (e.g. "What do you mean there's no WWII alt-history dress up night this month!?!  Where will I go!?!")

Misunderstanding, nonetheless the way I got it fits as well :D Cyberpunk events tend to be associated with handful of, say, barely legal activities such as hacking or smart drugs, while our retro futuristic piece of world is a whole bunch more serene and peaceful.

From what you're saying one could suppose you consider contemporary steampunk more a cosplay thing than a "stand-alone", bona fide subculture. The way I see it the burgeoning expansion of the genre ironically contributes towards simplyfying it and making it dully cliche. Face it, once you glue some gears on your top hat claiming it makes you a genuine victorian gentleman, there's no coming back. Avoid by any means.

You stated we lack the hunger as a group. What exactly do you mean by that? It seems in the US it's almost peaches and cream - how I wish I knew a single place out there with electroswing in its set!

By the way: I just wanted to say it's great talking with you, sport!

The pleasure is all mine, sir.

We're not hungry, meaning that we're not taking to the streets to start our own club nights and events.

Me?  I simply lack the funds to host large-scale events.  Thankfully, Philadelphia, NYC, and Washington are abound with speakeasies and neo-jazz clubs.  You just need to know where to look and how to knock.  Even on the top-side, there are plenty of publically advertised events in the area, such as The Jazz Age Lawn Party, The Electroswing Lounge, The Speakeasy Sessions, Dances of Vice, etc.  So, I extend my efforts towards supporting rather than competing.  Each of these events feeds my need for dieselpunk, and I want them to survive.

However, it sounds like you're in a bit of a dry spot, chap.  That warrants a different response entirely.  I'm not sure what the scene is like in Poland.  We only have four members claiming homeland there > http://www.dieselpunks.org/profiles/members/?q=poland

The scene in Poland? A dead-end, more likely! At least at the moment. It's terryfying how politics can wield such huge influence on self-contained issues, I'm talking popculture right now. Being all cooped up within the firm grasp of the Soviet Union merely a few decades ago left people close-minded and miserably uneager to develop. Hence it is us, the people of early 90s, who lead in bearing the torch of novelty.

Steampunk was the first to make itself comfortable here. Folk wearing tophats brandishing a wooden cane are zeroing in on plenty victorian era tea-houses. Talk to people into it and you'll see how they're all curious about the diesel phenomena. There's a light at the end of the tunnel. Last year when I was unable to host a meeting regarding our culture during a convention in my home town, people were genuinely disappointed. This year I'm not gonna let them down!

Reply to Discussion


Stay in touch


Allied Powers

Diesel powered dieselpunk podcast
Dieselpunk Industries
Seance Media by Tome Wilson
Vnv Nation

© 2020   Created by Tome Wilson.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service