HDS Con Special Guests

Come to the convention and help us welcome our special guests.


Ave Rose


In her sculptures, LA based artist, Ave Rose uses clockwork, antiques, insects, bones and taxidermy ephemera in congress with motion mechanics to produce reanimated, organic robots that tend more towards rococo than science fiction. Incorporating precious gems and metals, her creatures are whimsical amusements that practically breathe with artificial life. Ave Rose’s work has been featured in music videos, TV shows, store front installations, and art galleries around the world. In 2015, AveRose was a contestant on the national TV show Steampunk’d, where she created fantasy story-lines, props, sculptures and fashion pieces in every episode. On the grand finale, Ave‘s original steampunk fashion pieces helped seal the win for her team and Dita Von Teese compared her designs to that of Jean Paul Gaultier.

“Her works are characterized by compelling double-effects, blending beauty with the bizarre, technology with tradition, and youthful whimsy with the cold, mechanical realities of death. Behind all of the clockwork, darkness, and hints of satire, Ave’s creations celebrate life by fearlessly confronting themes of a macabre nature.”

-Hayley Evans. Beautiful Decay Magazine



Aether Brigade

The Aether Brigade is a group of comedians and artists who work to create a transmedia story. It is a single story told across multiple platforms, including live performance, radio theater, comics and more. In addition to working together to create their science-fiction props and historical costumes, the performers utilize a technique inspired by Commedia dell’arte: the characters have established relationships that inform sketch comedy and the occasional improv.

Toppy and Mina will be joining us for the Con. Who knows what they will discover. Look for them throughout the Con as they investigate and see where they can help make our time stream “better”. If you want extra time with one of these lovely ladies (watch it, they’re armed!), book a seat at the Aether Brigade table for Tea!




Dawn Devine

Author ∙ Costumer ∙ Belly Dancer ∙ Historian ∙ Artist
Author – Dawn is the internationally acclaimed author of Costuming from the Hip, a guide to designing and making belly dance costumes. She owns and runs her own independent publishing company, Ibexa Press, a growing firm with a backlist of eight titles and more on the way. In 2002 the company shipped over 2,400 pieces worldwide. Her most recent book, Embellished Bras, is a step-by-step guide to building costume bras for dance performance. A few of her other titles include From Turban to Toe Ring (2000), Bedlah, Baubles and Beads (2001) and Style File (2002).

Dawn will be serving on panels and speaking on her experiences. If you ever had any interest in self-publishing or how to make it as a writer, you won’t want to miss her talks!

Davina-Egyptian-Pillar-Assiut (1)


Doc Phineas

The Inimitable Renaissance man Doctor Phineas T. Kastle is a Gentleman Extraordinaire. Emceeing special events, appearing on TV shows, or Producing a Steampunk Convention like no other.

Doc Phineas is a veteran of Film, Television and Stage. Currently on Pawn Stars on the History Channel. College professor of 45 years. Visit his About page to learn more about the vision of this Inspirational SteamPunk Professor!

Doc Phineas will be serving as our Emcee for the Con, so he should be easy to find. Doc will also be serving as a celebrity host for the Saturday Tea.


Jerry Snyder

Jerry is an attorney by day, a notorious bon vivant come nightfall, and an experienced leader of abstractly defined, multi-faceted adventures. Jerry studied art in college in the early nineties, then went to law school and contented himself with thinking about making art for the better part of two decades. That gave him some time to think through some of my ideas before he returned to making objects.
Jerry notable artistic accomplishments include the Ichthyosaur Puppet Project, a life sized plywood ichthyosaur skeleton installed in the Terry Lee Wells Discovery Museum. Jerry is a member of the board of directors for the Generator, a community maker space in the Truckee Meadows, and a number of other local non-profits. He also makes a wicked paella from time to time.
Jerry Snyder



or by his given name JORDAN AFFONSO is the Chief engineer and Designer of the airship “SELENIUM SAIL” and the founder of PHISHNET CREATIVE STUDIO as well as a multi faceted artist and creator. Raised in a home with his mother as a professional singer/artist and his father as a professional musician and natural artisan, Jordan was surrounded by creative processes and inspiration throughout his life. He credits much of his creative knack and Structural intuitiveness to his early addiction to LEGO, and his drawing ability to his obsessive need to copy every image he liked from popular comic book artists and fantasy painters such as: Jim Lee, Rob Liefeld, Michael Turner, Gerald Brom, Boris Vallejo & Julie Bell. He is a self taught artist and maker and prefers to work outside the realm of formal art education-“I find I do my best works when I have the freedom to make mistakes an learn from them while not being bound by a set of principals that I have stay within, and steampunk it seems, is a genre which encompasses everything I love about being creative” his work can be seen on his INSTAGRAM handle Oiler_Mccoil or on Deviant art and Youtube under PHISHNET STUDIO.


The Selenium Sail is featured on all the HDS Con advertising this year as well as on the HDS Boarding Pass.


Artist, illustrator and Fabricator specializing in a variety of historically inspired works for painting, props, and costume works including hats and masks.

You can find Killbuck’s art on many of High Desert Steam’s past posters, and he designed our current logo for us. His thumbprint can be seen throughout the Con in the form of backdrops, signage, and various ambiance art pieces. You can find Killbuck’s booth in the Vendor area. He is always happy to talk about his art or anything that catches his fancy.

Killbuck image


Sidney Eileen

Artist, seamstress, and craftswoman, specializing in realistic artwork, representational minimalism, Celtic knotwork, corsetry, and costuming, Sydney has a passion for unique and custom creations, a passion for learning, and a passion for passing on what she learns.

She has devoted a great deal of time to sewing and costuming, especially bespoke corsetry, garb for historic re-enactment, and steampunk costuming.

Her corsets and clothing items are custom designed for a perfect fit, and are guaranteed to last. Historic corsets withstood the rigors of daily wear, and each of her corsets is made with that standard in mind.

At the High Desert Steam Con, Sidney Eileen will be teaching workshops, sitting on panels, giving talks, and serving as a celebrity host at Tea.


Star Wars Steampunk Universe

The Star Wars Steampunk Universe Crew (liscenced by Lucasfilm Ltd.) is an expanding charity cosplay troupe. Famed for their work with children’s charities in the Southern California community, these creative characters have been honored with the Costume Designers Guild 892 Award for Best Hall Costume of SDCC 2015, as well as featured in magazines such as: ‘Star Wars Insider’, ‘Cosplayers Among Us’, and ‘The Hourglass’, and attended the Hollywood World Premiere of ‘Star Wars: the Force Awakens’.

They are eager to hop into their airships at light speed to attend this year’s High Desert Steam Con, and share their experiences, costuming tips, and appreciation for the steampunk culture!