A movement that’s gained a lot of popularity in recent years is steampunk, and with its mixture of old and new technology, it’s not hard to see why people are interested in it. The interesting thing about steampunk is that there are so many variations, such as the dieselpunk and weird west genres. Several of these genres were on display at the TimeQuake Steampunk Convention in Manchester. Given my interest in steampunk I was looking forward to seeing what was there and I wasn’t disappointed.
Held at the Bowlers Exhibition Centre in Trafford, the TimeQuake Convention was the first of its kind. It brought together steampunk enthusiasts from across the UK. It was created by the same group who do Weekend at the Asylum, where an entire city is transformed into a steampunk paradise.
There were different zones within the building: steamwars, timelords, post apocalypse, steamwizards and westworld. Each zone was dedicated to a different kind of steampunk, with post apocalypse being inspired by Mad Max, while western world had a dominant wild west theme. The timelords zone was interesting for the focus on Doctor Who, and though I’m not a fan of the series, it was still awesome to see a steampunk dalek.
I found myself drawn to the traditional steampunk stalls and western world sections. It was great to see the range of materials on offer, such as top hats with goggles and sundial watches. I ended up buying a mechanical silver watch for £17.85. The watch was transparent, with the cogs and gears turning, creating an awesome effect.
I also ran into one of the creators of WesterNoir, a comic series about a monster hunter in the wild west. I’ve previously done several reviews of the graphic novels. The writer was kind enough to give me two free copies of the later volumes, so definitely watch out for my thoughts on both stories.
There was also an array of steampunk inspired vehicles, like a modified Volkswagen campervan that looked as if came right out of Mad Max. Other contraptions included a functioning steampunk R2-D2. The costumes that people wore were also a highlight, due to the amount of effort that they’d put into the clothing.
The TimeQuake Convention was a fun experience that showed off the beauty and importance of steampunk. If you’re unfamiliar with the genre, then I’d highly recommend looking into it for the amount of creativity that goes on.