Hello my beautiful Virtual Goddesses and Gods! It’s been much too long since my last post, I know, but one of the things I love most about my blog is it’s a labor of love, and that means when I have time for it I get to show it some love. Woot! 🙂 Today I’m writing about Second Life and the amazing Eye Candy that comes from it.
Really PF? You’re Gonna Write About Eye Candy? Shallow…
Hey…Get your mind out of the mass of naked mesh bodies you just immersed yourself into! That’s not the eye candy I’m referring to! Nope, I’m talking about the other eye candy – the awesome, beautiful, creative photos and videos that Second Life residents are creating. There is so much creative talent, and so many outlets for that creativity in Second Life that it’s no wonder I’ve met so many truly talented people there. Second Life attracts folks who long for a creative outlet, and provides them with endless opportunities to let their creativity shine!
I’ve seen amazing builds by artists doing it just for the art of it, and also by folks who wouldn’t have thought of themselves as artists, who are building stuff for the fun of it, and/or for an end purpose, like landscaping a sim or building an RP theme area, or a store, or just their SL home. From the creators who actually make the blades of grass, the tables and chairs, the clothing and weapons and accessories and animals and textures to apply on objects, to the folks who take those things and then create beautiful buildings, landscapes, theme parks, clothing designs, avvies and more, to the folks who see these things and admire them and capture them in photos and videos, it’s just a hotbed of creativity unleashed.
I mean seriously, that’s like 10 blog posts right there in that last paragraph, lol, but the rest of today’s post is about the photos and videos because I’m pretty sure you don’t want to be here all day.
Second Life on Flickr
There is a thriving community of SL photographers and videographers on Flickr. Just go to Flickr and search Second Life, you’ll see countless profiles and groups in the results. Second Life Flickr groups focus on a plethora of topics, from SL fashion photography to landscapes to decor items, to emotional scenes, friends scenes, couples scenes and even erotic art. The fashion designers in particular have recognized the power of Flickr, harnessing amazing photographers and artists like “Ephemeral” Skye Nefekalum, Jinx Jinx and Duchess Flux to wear their products in their amazing pics.
I learn so much from following these awesome photographers, and so many others too. It’s fun to go to my own Flickr stream and compare my earliest photos with the latest ones. I can definitely see the difference as I’ve gotten more interested in SL photography as a creative outlet vs just “oh look how much fun I’m having.” I’ll never stop posting the quickie look how much fun I’m having pics, but now they are interspersed with pics that I’m taking for the love of it.
Second Life Videos
Admittedly I am easily distracted by the next shiny shiny. And right now that next shiny shiny is SL videos. It all started with following Michael and Michelle Volturian on the Second Life feed, where they post links to videos they’ve made in SL, set to music. I love their videos! I’ve made boring business “how to” videos for RL purposes, but never really explored doing any video just for the fun of it. But the Volturians sparked my interest, and one day when I was bellydancing in SL and listening on YouTube to the song “Desert Rose” by Sting featuring Cheb Mami, I was thinking about how much I love the beautiful song but just as much dislike the video to it, which is nothing but a long car commercial. And then I thought oh how fun would it be to have this bellydancing set to this song. And that was it, my new project became making an SL fan video for the song I love so much.
My “Desert Rose” SL video. Special thanks to particle magician Sprinter Shepherd for creating the awesome desert rose particles, finding the perfect coyote moon image and helping me figure out how to use it, and for the magical dance too.
I started with screen captures using Quicktime, but found no matter how low I set my graphics settings in Second Life, the resulting video clips were choppy. Then I found Screenflick, a great little recording app for mac that provides great recordings, exports into many formats, and is very inexpensive. Of course I had to buy it. And then I had to go and do more video shoots, and by now I was getting tired of shooting video clips of the same thing, lol, so the end video right now includes both the choppy clips (first half) recorded with Quicktime and smooth clips (at the end) recorded with Screenflick. BUT thus far the folks I asked to review it have said they thought the choppy bits were like that on purpose, and they gave me thumbs up so I’ve left them in. Though I may go back if I get extra motivated one day and re-shoot those.
The editing was done in iMovie, and the lighting and visual effects were all achieved using in-world Windlight and phototools settings.
Check out the Second Life Videos group on Flickr to find out what SL video makers are making. Warning… you may lose track of time as you lose yourself in all the awesome creativity found in the residents of Second Life.
Share Your Stuff!
If you are a Second Life photographer or videographer, please leave a comment with links to your work. I love what you do!