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Category Archives: Sims

Plurk has eaten my soul and I find it easier to work within a 140-character count, especially with keeping up with friends. Anyway I checked out New World Notes and they had a good link to a New York Times article on art in SL(tm) and RL. (Adia will be coming up with her opinion of Paper Couture’s Spring 2009).

Art in SL(tm) is fun. It presents a different perspective on what is art and how we experience it.

There are the 2D pictures that dominate Flickr and many art galleries around SL. Somehow I feel like this experience isn’t unique to SL. Yes the pictures are shot using SL, which can bring unique features to the pictures, that you couldn’t shoot in RL. But after awhile its kinda boring. You see a lot of the same themes running through the photos and it gets kind of cliche after awhile. However this doesn’t mean they are not works of art and they are low of quality, but somehow it isn’t the same as experiencing the artwork. Second Life(tm) is all about experience rather than just observing. Even in SL(tm) you can just observe the world around you. Just kinda look at things. But what is the fun in that. Where else can you walk through a painting that was created almost 150+ years ago and feel apart of what the artist was envisioning. SL is about doing things, whether that be dancing in the various nightclubs or building the house you want to live in.

I respond well to artwork that I can experience. I love wandering around AM Radio’s builds because they are so surreal, but somehow I feel more connected to the piece. I wander through these places that have this surreal bent to them, but they aren’t dark and in someways disturbing of Dali and Manray.

Chouchou is another one of those places where I feel so utterly connected to the art and the emotions that take over me is something I love to experience. While I try to capture the solitude and peace of Chouchou through my pictures, I feel like I come up short. It is a 2D image with some emotion, but there isn’t the essence. I guess it has a lot to do with the music that is being played, which is always relaxing.

Arahan Claveau will always be an artist on the grid that I know I will find an interesting exhibit/installation. His pieces always have a very shocking quality to them. While some people enjoy that kind of art, I don’t think I have ever been 100% comfortable with that. I know that art is about the response from the viewer, but I tend to prefer images that are happy or at most twisted/happy gothic, i.e. Tim Burton. But that is what Arahan is all about. He wants to evoke these feelings whether they are good or bad and not censoring it. Whatever the feeling, however, his builds are always good and I enjoy them. I haven’t been to see his more recent works, because I took a break for the art world, except AM Radio’s builds. The piece he has up in his gallery looks really interesting and I might go take a look.

Kinda piggybacking on Arahan, comes my issue with art. Art gets lost in translation. The artist’s intent of the piece is lost when it is just a series of seemly random things put together and you don’t know all the personal meaning behind the piece. And then there would be the Dadaist, who just put things together randomly and challenge the notion of what is art.

Actually writing this piece has made me want to build an installation, just for the heck of it. I would love to do something focused around religion because that is what I want to study. In someway I’m scared about offending people with my piece that I have in mind. As an anthropologist I have to be very careful about not offending people, especially those whom I want to study. But I guess I’m not designing this project as an anthropologist, but as an artist that has preconceptions about a certain religion and who wants to confront those and actually understand where they are coming from.

Anyway this is going way too long. Hopefully I will remember to post Adia’s opinion this week.

Balt and Adia

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Sorry I haven’t posted in awhile, school has ended, so it can’t keep me posting regularly! With that said I have new photos!

I found a really cool build for the store 109 prims, which has some awesome steampunk vehicles and even a few merry-go-rounds!

Drill Factory

Okay, so HBlue and HAzul need more people! We had an exodus of people during the last few months and we need people to fill those gaps. Now if you have a home or a shop already, please still read this post as I may need your help as well. Note, I’m not part of the owners of the sims, but a highly concerned friend, resident, and vendor.

Here are my ideas on getting more attention for the sim.

1. I feel like we need to get more higher profile shops in the sim. We have a handful of small, locally based ones that get little traffic. Now here in lies the Catch-22, in order for us to get the traffic we are looking for, big/medium sized shops have to come in, but chances they are only going to come if they get a large traffic number. So this probably means that this isn’t a good solution, but still should be on the table if nothing else works.

2. Adversting. I don’t know how many classified ads we have put forth on SL(tm) Search, but I think it is time that we move to something that will get more clicks. I really think we need to put ads in the major magazines, newspapers, and possibly blogs so we can get out the message that we are looking for residents to the wider SL(tm) audience.

3. Possibly lower the prim rate so that way the price can go down. I know that there are other places that charge a lot more for a small amount of prims, but how many people need a few hundred prims? I believe there are more people at the lower priced end of the market than there are at the higher end. Or even better, how about charging a base fee for the size of the island, then add the fee for the number of prims one is using, so that way people who have big islands won’t be paying less then someone who is paying for a small island.

Anyway these are just some thoughts that I have, but you have any ideas that the sims could use?

Oh the insanity. With the recent decision to hike up prices $50 US, on OpenSim/Openspace, madness has broken out across the Grid and it is driving me crazy. [insert Britney Spears music video]

So people are really mad. Frankly, I have no idea why they should be mad about the price hike. You use so much data on a server, you pay for that use of data. Originally the light sims where to be used as wide open spaces that were used for say an area to fly planes and act out dogfights, not for heavy residential use. Now, some people still use the sims lightly, with some scenery and perhaps the vehicles used for the races or what not. But the fact is people are abusing the light policy. I believe that LL(tm) should have made specific guidelines about the use of the sims, which might have prevented at least some confusion on what could and couldn’t done on the sims.

Now the issue comes down to enforcement. If LL(tm) had put forth specific guidelines, how would they enforce it? Now I don’t know how many Opensims exist, but I have a feeling they are popular, that would mean that a Linden would have visit each sim to make sure the guidelines, which takes time. So this might mean that a few new Lindens would have to be hired to make sure guidelines are being followed.

This also brings up another issue. The guidelines wouldn’t be popular. It is easy to see people protesting the guidelines because it goes against LL(tm) non-involvement in what content people can produce.

So essentially the price hike was the only solution to try and fix the problem of having people abuse the conditions that the Opensim was supposed to have. Also, if people are going use the sims more then it just makes sense to charge more to balance out the server usage. Now what about the people who are using the sims in an appropriate manner? As unfair as it is, prices must be across the board because once you start granting exceptions more and more people will feel entitled to get their fee cut because they use x amount of prims or they don’t have any structures that aren’t houses or apartments.

While I can’t afford to buy and Openspace and have no reason to, I believe the price jump is not a steep one. $50 is not a lot of money. I know that people’s RL budgets are more squeezed because of the global economy, but if SL(tm) is important to you, you will make the sacrifice in order have your own sim. Plus aren’t most successful land baron’s rich? Yes this might get kick some smaller owners off, but I feel like even the land barons are complaining, when it might just increase their tier a $100 more.

Anyway I have to run,
Balt

  • I have decided to dj on Sunday for those who can’t make Friday’s Halloween Party. Music will be the same, just in different order. Costumes preferred. Major Lift
  • Still no update on Mercury. Need to get minutes from meeting. Will try to get back there and do some work.
  • For the Americans in the audience, yes I have at least one reader, please go and vote! Yes I know it has nothing to do with SL(tm), but still.
  • Saw one of my old good SL(tm) friends last night. Was really happy.
  • Got to get sunglasses for Adia for a quick photo. Perhaps find the right pose aswell. Awesome stuff at Cachet, all females need to check it out ad you will find some must haves. lol

Taken at Coral Springs. No editing.

So I got a plot on Plasma!!! So I decided on building a club called Mercury. Since I dj for fun at two clubs I thought it would be fun having my own club to play at, at least for a few times.

So the design concept is fairly simple, pulling from 3 sources of retro-futurism.

  • My first source is the Jetsons.

I’m really focusing in on the cylinders and rings that seem to dominate the designs on the Jetson’s buildings. Yes it is a bit cartoony but I think it works for the theme.

 

  • The second source of inspiration came from Disney’s Magic Highway stills

I love the minimalism of the design. Also the cell shading is fantastic and I want to incorporate that in some how, although I’m a bit lost on what to do for that.

 

  • Lastly the third source of inspiration came from the TV show Futurama, a cartoon, not for kids though, about Fry who freezes himself until the year 3000 and his adventures with his friends and co-workers.

I can’t seem to find the screen cap in question, but the group goes to a “retro” club where rings are retro. I think it was sort of mocking the Jetson’s because it is sort of a retro look today, and what the people in 3000 would consider retro if the rings were popular in the 2900’s. I guess that is why I’m using rings and curves in my designs instead of a more angular look.

As for the colors Im using so far, are red, white, and silver. I might add another color to bring it out of candy-cane land, but I don’t know which one to use.

While I only have the structure done, I will be adding decorations in a few days, all custom to the space. I think that I will be using reflexive architecture for the decor and then I’m doing a giant custom lamp that I think will look good in the space. Although I’m going to have to buy the furniture because I don’t have the skills to build curvy furniture. I will post some pictures when I get the chance, so until then.

Balt

I like design in all forms, lighting, theatre, fashion, architecture, and so on. I also am a big proponent of wiki based things. So when I heard, several months ago, about Studio Wikitecture placing in the top 3 designs and winning another side award for something I can’t quite remember, I thought that was really cool, because it really shows how people can collaborate in SL(tm) on really cool RL projects.

This got me thinking about the different types of architecture that have appeared in SL(tm). There are the basic RL houses that have made their way into SL. Lots of cottages, track-homes, lofts, and McMansions. But how many of them are innovative? How do they differ from RL houses in terms of design? Part of me says there isn’t a lot of innovation going on. I mean what can you do with a basic house design apart from the dominate house designs?

I guess you can do a lot of things. Since gravity really doesn’t exist, what about an upside down zygrat house, that would kinda cool. What about an abstract modern house that pushes the boundaries of what is beautiful, like this.

Architecture in SL(tm) is not just limited to houses. A large part of the innovative architectural design is evident in sim builds. Unique structures are always going up, some designs that are possible to build in rl and then there are ones that have to stay in SL(tm). One of those not possible in RL would be the Chou Chou sim. The, what seems like, infinite ladder that curves around above ground and into the heavens just floors me every single time I go there. Sometimes it is nice to see things, though, that are possible in the real world, but are impractical. I do enjoy going through complex castles, cyberpunk styled buildings, and other styles that would be either too big, expensive, etc. to actually build in RL.

But I guess I just looking at unique structures and analzing them.

Have you seen any really cool structures in your time in SL(tm)?

Okay, so I was browsing NWN, I came upon this post Help Design The City Of Yesterday’s Future Today.

It is all about creating the Vision of the 21st Century from a 20th Century viewpoint. Doesn’t it sound cool!? I’m thinking that this would be a good exercise in building and design. Ooo maybe I can get the HBlue team on board and do a group build, that would be killer.

While I would like to do something all cute and bubbly, I kinda want to do something for “The Wrong Side of the Tracks.” hehehe lol although doing something for Plasma too.

When I first looked at the page, I quickly thought of bubble ray guns for sale. Wouldn’t that be cool?! I’m a dork. lol Anyway I would make some cute ones and then some sick looking ones, but the only problem is how to script them because I have no scripting experience. 😦

Anyway here is the link to the official site:
Rezzable Plasma City

Taken at Templum ex Obscurum. Unedited. Click the title to see the pics and to be able to click the SLurl(tm)! Enjoy!