Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Interview With Xirana Oximoxi

 
By Kayly Iali

Xirana Oximoxi (Nuria Vives)is a mixed media artist though trained in classical realism, she explores all mediums; constantly learning new ways to express herself in different ways. She is one of many real life artists who brings her art into second life. Her work is exhibited in various venues in major galleries throughout Second Life. Exhibited are series of Xirana’s portraits, children’s books, and mixed media works that were produced.

Xirana works from photos as well as on location...it depends on the subject matter. With landscapes she would start sketching outside, then take a photo and finish the work in the studio. With abstracts, she allows the painting inspire her.

Xirana is inspired by the old masters, Munch, Pollock, Soutine, Picasso and especially Goya as well as Monet and Turner. Her greatest influence would be her grandfather who also was a painter and a photographer but had died when she was very young. Also, Xirana gets help from going to exhibits and reading art books.In Second Life her favorite artists are actually 3D artists such as Meilo Minotaur, Mistero Hifeng, and Rose Borchovski.

Xirana started to exhibit in Second Life just for fun by renting a small gallery. Then as she found herself exhibiting in more galleries it became a way to create more art. Some galleries have a policy to change exhibits every three months more or less.So,in Xirana’s own words, “... so, it was kind of a way to think, what can I exhibit next! (smile).... and it is a way to share what you do ... sometimes more people will visit your exhibit here than in real life.” She had found the pressure to change exhibits affected her real life art, too.Some of the galleries that are exhibiting Xirana’s art are The Galleries, La Maison D’Aneli, InterstellART and Artists United Gallery.More collections of her works can be found at Time Lost Art.

One of Xirana’s projects in Second Life as well as in real life are her children's books; she writes and illustrates them. A friend suggested that some of her drawings would be perfect for children's books. She researched in public domain for stories but ended up writing her own. A course in illustrated children’s book was a great help in getting started in writing and illustrating children’s books.

Aimed toward ages 5 to 7 years old, Xirana’s first story was about a little mouse and his adventures. One of the adventures was Minu exploring a river but accidentally falls in. To rescue himself he grabs a chair as it flowed down the river. Minu encounters an old man who takes Minu in to live with him.

Xirana has since then written 10 other stories including a family of hippos and a girl named Amanda. Xirana describes Amanda as a curious character, open to learn and willing to help friends. She had written and illustrated five other stories relating to her adventures.

In Second Life Xirana’s children’s books are in exhibit at The Galleries and her gallery in Jubata. At The Galleries, Georgiana (180, 109, 48), a 3D setup of her book “The Heroes in Face Masks” can be viewed. Delightful paper sculptures and collages of animals and little children dancing on papered ground. At her gallery at Jubata (131, 245, 99), there is a slideshow of “Amanda and the Ladybug.”

Xirana’s children books are available on Amazon (link) and her own website, http://mynicebooks.com (in which a donation can be made for a free downloadable book). Lots of her books are in some educational platforms in schools.

Xirana’s advice to new artists who wants to exhibit in Second Life is “My advice is that here all is possible...No worries about galleries, to create your own is very easy...”

To see more of Xirana Oximoxi’s art visit her website at http://nuriavives.com/. Xirana sells her works in her Etsy shop at https://www.etsy.com/shop/NuriaVivesArt. In real life Xirana’s artworks can be found in Spain and France. Also noted is her fundraiser, “A Pencil for Ghana” at her blog (link).

Kayly Iali

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Interview with Judilynn India


by Kayly Iali

Judilynn India is an abstract artist in real life who brings her works into Second Life for exhibits. I have known Judilynn for many years and come to be one of the many admirers and collectors of her works. We recently sat and had a little chat about her artist life here in real-life and in Second Life.

(Kayly) What kind of artist are you? and what medium do you work in? How would you describe your art?

(Judilynn) I am an abstract painter working in acrylic and mixed media.  Mixed media for me includes paint, ink, and pixels. I like painting intuitively, but also include graphic elements at times. I was trained as a graphic artist and fell in love with painting later in life.

(Kayly) What is your process? Do you work from photos? Do you work from life? How do you approach your art?

 

(Judilynn) I generally begin with paint on canvas, starting with texture and color blends. I love layering for effects of depth and shadow. The painting may remain as is on canvas, or I'll take it into a computer program and further work the imagery to add other elements of grunge, etc. I don't generally do illustration, but when I do, it's somewhat surreal. I almost always work from my imagination. Occasionally, I may use a photo source for an idea.

(Kayly) So,your inspiration is from within?

(Judilynn) Absolutely

(Kayly) But you are probably responding to situations around you, subconsciously.

(Judilynn) I believe my mood and general state of mind determine what appears before me on the canvas. I work intuitively.

(Kayly) Did you have any formal training in art? If so, what university? If not did you take workshops or learned from books?

(Judilynn) My artistic training began as a child. Though I was involved in art programs during grade school, I began my formal training as a commercial art student in high school. I went on to study Graphic Design at Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Pennsylvania.  Through the years, I learned how to paint in oils and other media and decided I enjoyed painting. I've been doing so since the early 2000s. With the advent of YouTube, it's been fun watching other artists demonstrate their techniques. I've picked up ideas here and there. As a bookaholic, I've acquired a good library over the years. :)Lately, I've begun to explore cold wax and oil.


(Kayly) I also work in cold wax and oils. But for my still life paintings, it allows for more abstraction in my representational work...we have to exchange ideas later about cold wax and oils.

(Judilynn) Yes, I've seen how realists apply the cold wax to give more definition and texture to their work.

(Kayly) What is your earliest experience with art that you remembered that mark your path into becoming an artist? Who influenced you to be an artist? A family member, a teacher?

(Judilynn) I believe I came into the world with a pencil in my hand (laugh). My earliest memory was waking up one morning, stealing a crayon from my sister's desk and drawing on the wall next to my bed. I was three years old. My mother was a bit "intrigued" with my work, so she got a roll of butcher's paper and taped lengths of it on the wall. She'd replace it as I filled the sheet.  In kindergarten, instead of playing with the other girls, I would go to the easel the teacher had set up for us and I'd paint.  I recall once painting a purple flower and alarming my teacher when I painted the background in black. I had to explain to her that it was a flower at night (laugh) .My teacher would tell the class that 'Judi's going to be an artist when she grows up.'  That's when I first learned there was a word for what I loved to do. Drawing and sometimes painting, was my general pastime. My mother always encouraged me. She was also talented, but did art as a hobby. My father was an oil painter and commercial artist.

(Kayly) What artists in real life and SL have affected you?

(Judilynn) My earliest artist crush was Norman Rockwell. I'm not sure where I first saw his works, but my mother knew this and bought me a book of his artwork for Christmas one year. It was amazing. I also fell in love with Vincent van Gogh's work. The texture, color, expression-just amazing. Later in life, I would come to admire the work of Carol Nelson (https://www.carolnelsonfineart.com) and Gerda Lipski (https://www.gerdalipski.com) for their use of acrylic texture and color. Since coming to SL, I've taken note of artists like, Elin Egoyan and you.(I was flattered)

(Kayly) Whatis your reason to exhibit in Second Life? and what has your experience been like? Any positive or negative. And has exhibiting in SL affected your real-life art?

(Judilynn) I have also been a computer geek since the 80s and first learned of virtual reality in the late 80s. When I read about SL in an online news article and about how a Boston artist brought his work into SL, I knew I had to jump in. I was elated to find a place online where I could actually exhibit art and connect with other artists and art lovers in real time.  There have been ups and downs, but mostly, my experience here has been good. I came to SL with 12 pieces to show and soon started getting invitations to join group exhibits and solo shows. SL has actually kept me painting and developing my techniques.

(Kayly) Have you gotten commissions for real-life purchases from people in SL?

(Judilynn) I've only had a few people in Second Life actually make print purchases from my real life website at www.judilynnart.com. Real life purchases and commissions have come from people who have seen my work online or had conversations with me. I think my SL followers find it easier to collect in Second Life. It's financially easier to put together a virtual home gallery.

(Kayly) Do you have your own galleries? Do you exhibit in other galleries? What art related projects do you usually do in Secons Life?

(Judilynn) I have three of my own galleries in Second Life: Center Ground, Avalon town and Chelsea. My other resident installations are at various galleries throughout SL. I had the opportunity to build a sim sized installation for Linden Endowment for the Arts in 2018.  That was my first shot at a 3D build.  Most recently, I created an interactive installation at BURN2, this year's virtual Burning Man Festival. It was an amazing experience. I'm hoping to do more 3D work in the future.I've also been involved with exhibitions for Doctors Without Borders and Creations Gallery, fundraising for Parkinson’s.

(Kayly) What advice would you give to artists who is interested in exhibiting in SL?

(Judilynn) For artists who would consider showing their work in SL, I would suggest wasting no time setting up a small gallery of your work in rented shop with good traffic. I would look for areas that cater to artists (like Hotel Chelsea Manhattan NYC). Join all the art groups that you can, and introduce yourself to other artists and gallery owners for suggestions and advice. Find a mentor if possible. I'm always happy to help.

(Kayly) Any links to purchase your real-life works? website? And what main gallery would you like to direct your visitors to view your works?

(Judilynn) My website for art prints is www.judilynnart.com.  I can also be contacted through that site regarding canvas originals. The website will be updated soon to include more canvas art.  My main gallery, and one that is updated with newest work is the Center Ground Gallery of Art, Han Loso (226/30/72)

I should also add visit Judilynn’s Avalon Gallery, Tabula rasa (111/44/25).

Kayly Iali

Friday, October 16, 2020

Burn2 Exhibits And Other Builds

 
By Gemma Cleanslate


That is the inside sensor of the Temple where you can leave your messages and thoughts which will be read aloud at the Temple Burn. I remembered my good second life friends that were lost .

As I roam the playa I see so many wonderful installations. Each stage is unique for the various performers and DJs who come daily to perform. You already saw the DJ stage in all its glory .


Here is a spectacular experience by Ilia Sojourner.  Of her build she says, “My build represents some of those other worlds, all very different, spinning through the void. Each has its own orbit, its own pattern, its own story that we may never know. And the glowing-eyed stone heads, silently observing: are they an alien civilization? Are they gods? Are they us? That’s up to you to decide.

At the center is our own little universe, the center of everything we think we know. Step inside the big blue bubble and meditate on it all, walk through one of the stone heads, or click one of the glowing red spheres and spin and dance through the void along with the spinning worlds.”
visit at http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Burn2%20Cosmic%20Bob/56/248/24

Andrea Jones has created  a place to contemplate the religions of the multiverse. Enter each temple and learn about the major religions . They are lovely examples. Make your way all around the plot  for more. There are places to relax and eat too. 

http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Burn2%20Quantum/42/45/24



Some of the builds are huge and extravagant but some are small and what you would expect to find in the desert and on the playa in real life as camps.Foot bath at the end of the day!


 



Remember the MAN burns on Saturday twice , 12:00 noon and 6:00 pm SL time and the Temple burns Sunday at 12:00 noon and 6:00 pm SL time. Dancing for 2 hours before the burns. Enjoy!!

Gemma Cleanslate


Monday, October 12, 2020

The 2020 Election Simulator

 
By Bixyl Shuftan

Last week in the official blog, Linden Lab encouraged its US residents to register to vote. " Just as we are free to create and shape the virtual world of Second Life, we can’t forget the power that we also have to shape the physical world. We are all a part of something, and your voice matters. Register to vote today!" Near the end of their reminder, they mentioned something election-related inworld, the "2020 Election Simulator."

Do you need to prepare yourself - mentally, spiritually, physically - for the tension of Election Night 2020? These randomized election simulations between Trump and Biden are based on the best available forecasts and set in a mock TV news studio.

Dropping in on the coastal mainland sim of Eyeharts, I walked into the nearest large building and was greeted by an animesh receptionist.

3NN News HQ Receptionist: Welcome to the 3NN television studio, ... We are currently shooting The Simulation Room with Guy Simpleton. Please feel welcome to enter the studio. This simulation is free for the public, but if you're concerned that its creator is crazy, please feel free to donate to his psychiatric care fund. If this election makes you sick of mankind, feel welcome to donate to the Squid Overlord's Invasion Fund. But most of all, please enjoy your experience here.

Walking in, there was a huge map of the fifty states and DC. in front of me was a table with several animesh figures sitting. Between the table and the map were a few cameras, and an animesh figure that was probably the reporter. To the side was two boards with the fifty states in two groups, red states and blue states, with most a deep color, but some were a shade of purple.

Guy Simpleton: The time is 8:00pm on the East Coast. Polls have now closed in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Washington D.C. and in parts of Florida, Kansas, Michigan, South Dakota and Texas.

Time would quickly pass on the board, "Virginia on the Big Board for Biden. 13 electoral votes there. ... The time is 8:30pm on the East Coast. Polls are now closed in Arkansas. In the state of Arkansas, 3NN is calling a win for Trump. That is 6 electoral votes for Trump. ... We can now put the Hoosier State up on the Big Board. Trump has won Indiana's 11 electoral votes. ... We have a projection. Maine - First District on the Big Board for Biden. 1 electoral votes there." The states didn't fill up completely, but red or blue squares appeared, about one per electoral vote. After about ten minutes, and a bit after midnight into the simulator, the announcer called out, "We have a winner! Pennsylvania's 20 electoral votes has put Biden over the top. Biden wins the 2020 election!"

I was greeted by two residents in the building. One was Duncan (ABoysPlaceMall Resident), "Hello and welcome, Bixyl!" He was the one whom had build the place, "I built this for myself mostly. All that talk about trying to run up a lead on Election Night. And you can get all the forecasts and stuff but like... what's the experience going to be like? So I cross-referenced poll closing times with forecast data. And even rewatched the 2016 news coverage. I made a few gentle tweaks to put the swing states out a bit later into the night and add some drama." He did say he was thinking of adding on more information, "I'm wondering if I should try to incorporate this data on returns somehow," mentioning "2020 General Election Early Vote Statistics" of the US Elections Project.

There were a few tip jars around. Duncan explained, "I just put out tip jars but I don't need tips. So many people were asking about them that I put them in." When I asked him about my assumption about the blocks over the states being electoral votes, "That is correct. There's one block for each electoral vote to give a quick idea of the relative scale. My idea was to help with the visualization of what all the numbers people are swimming in mean." Because of this Nebraska and Maine can easily show both red and blue.

I noticed a globe in the front office in which of 1185 simulations done, most had come out in support of Biden. Duncan would say, "One thing I should say is that my simulator runs hot for Biden, not because it's biased to the left, but because it's biased towards the favorite. I use the 538 projection data for each state, but their model treats states as dependent events. So like, if it projects high turnout among Black voters, then states like Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi tip together. I treat each state as a mutually independent event. ... Out in the lobby there's a running tally of all the simulations so far. Trump started out winning about 1 in 40 but now it's like, one every day or two." Duncan then brought my attention to the two boards with red and blue states, "This wall here has them lined up left to right based on how far they lean." He then brought up a website, https://www.270towin.com , "You can draw your own maps there if you want to. And if you click these states."

New Mexico: New Mexico is worth 5 electoral votes. The latest projection gives Trump a 4% chance of winning New Mexico in the 2020 election.

New Mexico: If you live in New Mexico, you can verify your current voter vegistration status on the New Mexico Secretary of State website: https://voterportal.servis.sos.state.nm.us/WhereToVote.aspx

New Mexico: Information on voter registration information has been obtained from Vote.org: https://www.vote.org/am-i-registered-to-vote/


"It tells you the latest forecast chance for the state and how to check your voter registration," Duncan informed, then drew my attention to the nearby smaller buildings to the east, "Also, the voting booth in front of the post office - when it's not broken (I'm not sure what breaks it yet). It will ask you how you want to vote and then give you information about the rules for your state."

The simulator rebooted to run again, and while doing so, we heard the reporter go, "We have received reports of election administration problems in North Carolina. The state's 15 electoral votes will have to be resolved by legislative or judicial processes. Will this prevent the determination of a final winner in the national election?" I asked about it, and Duncan answered, "I threw in a 'cannot resolve' chance, like in this simulation, North Carolina could not resolve. There is a 1% chance per state. So like, let's say Trump wins Texas 64% of the time. If it rolls 64 exactly, the state goes into 'cannot resolve' purple. I don't specifically track hung elections, but if you take the total simulations, subtract the Biden wins and the Trump wins from it, the difference is approximately the number of times the elections have ended without a clear winner. I make no attempt to forecast how those conflicts might play out. Nor do I try to price in the possibility of legislatures actually overturning elections. I mean if Biden wins Pennsylvania and they just decide to nullify the vote... that's too unprecedented to reliably forecast." When I checked, there had been twelve ties, about half the number of Trump wins.

Duncan went on, "There's a great metaphor about forecasting - the turkey and the farmer. Every day, the farmer comes to the turkey with a bucket of grain. And so the turkey, based on past precedent, has reason every day to expect a bucket of grain. But one day, the farmer comes with a hatchet, 'cuz it's Thanksgiving. And while that day is inevitable, nothing in the turkey's experience prepares him for it. It's beyond the realm of causal inference. ... It's told well in a book called Black Swan by, uh, Nassim Taleb. Anyways, yes something like it happened in 2000. You can debate to the end of the day what really happened in Florida that year, but the fact is courts stepped in and terminated the count of the vote according to procedures that had been previously established by law. 1968 has always been dogged by allegations that Illinois and Texas were taken by cheating. ... 2000 was not pretty, but we've never had state legislatures try to overturn election results they didn't like."

"y'know, elections bring down dictators. There are losses that are too crushing to steal. Last poll I saw, Biden was up at 57% territory. If he can convert that to votes..." He then directed my attention to a board near the table, "The white board next to the cable pundits has a democracy pledge." Looking over, it had the following:

We pledge for Democracy:

1) We will vote.

2) We will refuse to accept results until all the votes are counted.

3) We will nonviolently take to the streets if a coup is attempted.

4) If we must, we will shut down this country to protect integrity of the democratic process.


"You can hop on the white board and take your own picture of yourself with the pledge if you want to," he told me as he gave me a picture.

Of the last Presidential election in 2016, Duncan commented, "Talk about the flukiest of flukes. It was decided by less than 1/10 of 1% of the vote in three democratic-leaning states with Republican governments. ... 2016 was so close that it's impossible to be sure it was free and fair. It's impossible to be sure it wasn't. ... We never conducted an audit of the election. So where you come down on it really is more about where you set the needle of your preconceptions."

"We have a long hard road ahead of us as a country," Duncan went on, "no matter how this election turns out. In many ways this whole project here was cathartic for me." He directed my attention to the nearby buildings, "I went to the protests, so I put a protest in front of the courthouse. I've got an urgent care (center) for covid ... all the way down at the other end of the parcel. ... There are anti-maskers yelling at the immigrant running the donut shop."

There was some conversation between Duncan and I with a resident whom had just returned after a seven year absence, whom had some questions for the both of us. Eventually, I told them both farewell, checked out the other buildings some, then went on my way.

The Newser has no plans to endorse a candidate, but does ask that all US citizens who can vote, even if it's for a third party or write-in candidate, and of course for local races and propositions. Due to the tense political climate, discretion is advised when discussing political matters to others.

Although rumors persist about some close elections such as 1960, the only US Presidential election most historians can agree had it's outcome altered by fraud was in 1876, during the Gilded Age, in which the electoral votes of three states were disputed. The losing side only accepted the results after a behind the scenes deal of which the consequences lasted for many decades.

https://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Eyharts/65/197/23/


*Update* On October 20, Linden Lab would post about the Election Simulator in it's Destinations Guide, including the above video.
 

Bixyl Shuftan

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Asadorable Delightful (Asadora Summers) On The Yavascript Pod Cars


By Bixyl Shuftan

With the Pod Car tours on the mainland created by Yavanna Llanfair in the news lately due to the announcement of their closing last Friday due to a miscommunication with Linden Lab, and the announcement a few days later that they would be staying. Unfortunately, Yavanna is not as active in Second Life as she used to be due to a Coronavirus infection having had some lasting effects on her. Fortunately, there was someone whom could answer questions about the pod cars and what's been going on, Asadorable Delightful (Asadora Summers).

When asked how long had she known Yananna, and her pod system, she answered, "Let's see, I first rezzed 2006, Pods started in 10 years ago... I've known Yavanna around five years. The pods I knew when they first began or near around then, experienced them, but haven't regarded them so passionately until I moved back to Mainland."

Of her role with the pod car system, "Currently, I am a moderator for the Pod Riders group, which is a group of people that enjoy exploring Mainland using the YavaPods. I also stay close outside of SL with Yavanna Llanfair who founded the Pod Riders group. If she isn't available, then I pass on what is asked to be passed on to her. I make sure to keep the Pod Riders group notified of new stations/new pod stops and what else regards the Yavapods."

When I asked if there was ever a glitch in the cars, Asadorable answered, "If there is a glitch with the pods, someone reports it to the Pod Riders group and/or will send a message to Yavanna telling her. Yavanna is excellent at sorting any problems out right away. Normally however, it's very rare there is a glitch with the pods, unless it has something to do with out of Yavanna's control."

As it turned out, Asadorable didn't hear about Yavanna's 24 hour ban until just before the announcement, "I first heard of Yavanna's 24 hour ban when she sent a notecard last Friday, explaining all that had happened and as to why she was doing what she had done, making the pods still work but not riding down roads on their own without a passenger." Of her being banned and the lack of a response from the Lab, "I'd chalk it up to it can be easy to have misunderstandings on any platform on the Internet, especially in SL."

Of the numerous comments that Yavanna had gotten in support, "Of course there were! Yavapods are a Mainland institution, actually a SL institution! One resident had a concept and created it, in an effort to bring people together on Mainland, to help people explore and see what they would not normally be able too without the pods."

In the middle of our interview came the announcement that Yananna and Linden Lab had resolved the misunderstanding. "It's exciting!" Asadorable told me, "Yavanna is certainly relived, as we all are in the community!" Of the part about "possible joint projects," she wasn't sure what they could be, "Mmmm, well honestly, Bixyl I can only imagine! It's Second Life after all and SL is what we make it! (smile)"

Might we see pod tours in Bellissaria? She answered yes and no, "Actually, as Patch Linden stated in his reply post on the thread that refers to the pods on the SL community forums, he did mention that they have already used some elements of that nature in Belliseria. You'd have to check out that post yourself, to make sure though."

When asked if she had anything to add, Asadorable answered, "I just want to add that Yavanna has has done Mainland Proud. The Pod Riders, all the support from other Mainland and Pod lovers, we all have done Mainland proud with the support we have shown Yavanna. She created a beautiful thing for us all to enjoy together and explore using the pods. Mainland wouldn't be the same without them."

To join the Pod Riders group (Click here).

Bixyl Shuftan

Monday, August 17, 2020

Scraps: Collages at Montara Bridge Works Gallery


By Klaus Bereznyak


Scraps, by Veyot (Resident) is the current collection of art on display at Montara Bridge Works Gallery in Second Life.

The gallery is located in the sky above a tiny beach idyll where visitors are welcome to relax and enjoy the waterside setting, take off for further exploration in a passing Yavascript Pod, select a destination from the posters on display or check out the landmarks from a notecard in the news vendor.


Into this context, Veyot has placed her virtualized collection of hands-on, real-life collage work, made initially not with pixel manipulation but with glue, paper, and scissors. The collages are abstract and freeform with thematic echoes of shape, color, and content, leaving it very much to the observer to take what they will from the detail.

Veyot's summary, provided in a notecard at the exhibit, states: "These abstract collages are made from scraps of junk mail, old calendars, magazines and newspapers. I use them for greeting cards or fold them over to make covers for tiny notebooks. I prefer to tear random shapes instead of carefully cutting around an object. In SecondLife, they seem more useful as textures rather than wall hangings, so I put them all in one box. It's upstairs."


Many of the pieces include tantalizing fragments of text and a mixture of formal and informal composition, figures, faces, textures from nature, fabrics, maps and photographs. There are 12 individual pieces on the wall and several d├ęcor items textured with collages as well as the box of textures, which are on offer as freebies.

However playful and accidental the works may appear at first, they are marked by a coherent style and overall feel that perhaps comes from the fact that Veyot has been making collages for several years, although this is the first time they have been presented in an inworld collection. Veyot explained to me it was the combination of her commitment to making a "collage a day" while stuck at home during the Covid-19 crisis and an invitation by gallery owner, Pearl Grey, that provided the impetus for the project.


The pictures were chosen from dozens of possible options. Choosing the ones that would work together in the space, Veyot tells me, was a challenge that took "some imagination". It is an accessible exhibit in that we are likely to be familiar with printed material and many of our humans had a crack at sticking things together on paper in our early education. I found myself naturally responding to the colorful, kaleidoscopic compositions as they seemed to celebrate nature and topography, everyday life and exotic locations, inviting fresh associations between visual cues.


It's inspiring to look at these pictures, and I found myself wanting to have a go too. I asked Veyot if she had any tips for wannabe collagers. She said, "Calendar pictures are an especially good source because of the size. Tear the page into random shapes and then glue them down in random order for a simple abstract collage. Take care which way you hold the paper when you tear. You can get a white edge either showing or not, whichever you prefer."


Veyot is one of many creative souls making ingenious use of the opportunities in our virtual world to make art and stories and have adventures. You can read what she's up to on her blog or follow her on Tumblr.

SLURL: https://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Montara/47/187/702
Veyot's View: https://veyot.tumblr.com/
Virtual Veyot: https://veyot368870036.wordpress.com/
Klaus Bereznyak

Friday, July 17, 2020

Bellisseria Update: Working on The Railroad


By Bixyl Shuftan



While attention was on the Second Life Birthday, work on the Bellisseria region continues. This includes the railroad, and rail bridges, rail lines, and the occasional railroad station are being placed by Linden Lab's moles.


 On the map, one can just barely see the rail lines as brown lines. A little easier to see are the light green lines marking places for track to be placed.


The quickest place to find them are at bridge areas, where a rail bridge is next to a road bridge.


 At some places, the moles placed rail, ties, and other objects to help give the impression of a rail line under construction, which it is.


There are occasional stations along the railroad.


I (or rather my alt in this case), was able to rezz a rail car and move along. At one point though, the car got stuck. So I had to go into edit and push it a distance.


While most of the tracks laid down went by community areas, there were some through some more rocky and wooded places.


 It made for some picturesque scenery.


At one point, I found a zip line that led from the top of a hill next to the tracks.


The areas near the track are being filled with Linden Homes, available to Premium account residents, the ones I saw in Victorian and log cabin styles.


But while much track has been laid down and ready to use, there's still more to lay down. On the ground, one can see the green lines marked for future building.


So one can't ride a train across eastern Bellisseria just yet. But eventually it can be done in the future. For now, the moles will still be workin' on the railroad.

Bixyl Shuftan (and Rezzdammit Resident)

Monday, July 6, 2020

Three More SL17B Exhibits


By Bixyl Shuftan


The events may have been over for a week, but the exhibits are still up. And there are a lot of them. One that got my attention was the "Epic Surf Center" at SL17B Stunning (217/33/23).

Epic Surf Center promotes all information related to surfing in Second Life; from surfing regions, surfboards, and swimsuits/wet-suits. There is a wealth of information on surfing, instruction on surfboards, and up-to-date surf-related events in Second Life.

Unlike some exhibits, this one is interactive. The area has a huge pool in the middle, simulating a wave. To surf around, just touch the rezzable surfboard, and one will rezz. Get on it, and ride around for a while. You can also read information about the main location of the center inworld.


Another exhibit that got my attention was from the "Instituto Espanol SL" group's Aztec pyramid build. On the inside, one gets a lesson about Aztech mythology and it's beliefs on life after death.

Mictlan was the Aztec Underworld, ruled by it's Lord and Lady. It was a gloomy place reached by the dead only after wandering for four years beneath the earth, accompanied by a "soul companion", a dog which was customarily cremated with the corpse. 

The journey from the first level to the ninth was difficult, and took four years. But the dead were aided by the psychopomp Xolatol. The dead had to pass many challenges, such as crossing a mountain range where the mountains crashed into each other, a field of wind that blew flesh-scraping knives, and a river of flood with fearsome jaguars.

Getting through one level of this underworld required going through one jungle in which the chests of the souls were typically slashed open by wild animals, and the hearts torn out and eaten by a jaguar. Talk about "eat your heart out."

You can get to the pyramid at SL17B Captivate (101/88/23). There's also a video one can watch (link).


There was another water-themed exhibit that I thought was noteworthy, "Underwater Wonders" at SL17B Astonish (56/225/21)

As the waves gently rise and fall giving the air of calm, what could possibly like beneath? First, take a moment to learn about a few creatures from the sea and then stroll on down to the climate-controlled observation pod. Be sure to grab your free gift while there. Please watch your step on the way out! Actually, take a deep breath! Brought to you by creators Cynimon Catnap & Diamonique Viper on behalf of Vipera!

As mentioned, at one spot are displays to read up about some of the numerous living things in the ocean. There's also a pipe you can go down and port into a couple picturesque undersea area. One has a dance animation for mermaid avatars. Another has a free gift, a face and snorkel, that depending on your avatar may require some tweaking.

By all means, don't just stop at these exhibits. There are many more fun ones to explore. You have until Sunday July 12 to do so before they fade away into memory.

Bixyl Shuftan