Posted in Bay City, event, holiday, Press Release, Second Life

Bay City’s 2018 Tree Lighting

 

Bay City Tree Lighting Poster 2018

BAY CITY, SL (1st December 2018) – It’s that most wonderful time of the year! Once again, the Bay City Alliance will host its annual Tree Lighting event, now in its eighth outing.

The event will be held on Sunday, 9th December 2018 from 1-4 pm SLT. The event will be held at the Bay City Fairgrounds, in North Channel (SLurl) and will feature DJ GoSpeed Racer as well as live performances by Melinda M. Baptiste and Erika Ordinary. There will be ice-skating, dancing, refreshments and a great deal of fun to be had!

We will once again be supporting Child’s Play , a charity that helps kids still be kids when they are in hospital, with donation kiosks around the venue.

Bay City is a mainland community, developed by Linden Lab® and home to the Bay City Alliance. The Bay City Alliance was founded in 2008 to promote the Bay City regions of Second Life and provide a venue for Bay City Residents and other interested parties to socialize and network. It is now the largest group for Residents of Bay City.

For more information, or to participate in the event, please contact Marianne McCann.

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Posted in avatar, body part, Flickr, nudity, portrait, Second Life, self-portrait, skin

The New Skin & Head

Four Uccie Skins
After I bought a new skin and a mesh head I was told I that I didn’t look like me, so some pictures were in order. Left to right, the skins are Lumae Adore Aegean, Lumae Iriana, Lumae Eirtae T9 – Java Freck, Lumae Eirtae T7 – Nutmeg Freck. The second one is the newest release from Lumae (see here) and the reason for this post.

The SLink “Hourglass” body is topped with a Utilizator “Normie” mesh head. A quick note about this item: I’ve tried a dozen mesh heads and even bought shapes and appliers in an effort to get one to look like me. The Normie looked enough like me out of the box that I bought one for me and one for Xandah.

Maybe I was wrong. Or the tweaks I did to the head shape weren’t enough. Or, it’s the skin. I’ve had the head for about a week and the person who said I didn’t look like me hadn’t said so before I bought the light blue skin. Let me back up a bit.

Years and years ago, there was a brand called “SinSkins” and everything in the store was marked down to 10$L per item so I bought nearly every skin there for me and for my Zyx characters. Each of the Zyxs started life wearing a blue SinSkin (see here) and continued until mesh bodies were available. Then each switched to the Lumae Aegean you see above, left, the younger Zyx also getting the Lumae T7 Java shown second from right, above. Like me, each also has other skins, almost all from Lumae, but that’s another post or few.

I loved that blue skin so much that I searched long and hard for a few years but only recently did I corner Lumae’s creator, Lumiya Rae, to create one. I even showed her this NSFW pic from Flickr as an example. Little did I know, she had one in the works and she released it (with other skins) at the Mesh Body Addicts Fair (SLurl). After the announcement and 20 minutes of going SQUEEEEEEEEE I picked one up. And it is lovely. After buying a pose and setting up a shot, I showed the pic to a friend and was told it wasn’t me.

The Normie head seems to be based on Second Life’s “classic” or “system” avatar and so it was 98% “ME” out of the box. I tweaked it with several Windlights and even gave my shape to an alt to do an overlap comparison. I got it close, really. But texture on a mesh prim vs. texture on a system head (a form of mesh, but a different kind) will show differences. And I started wearing more makeup when I got the mesh head. But I do have to concede that the skin can make a big difference. When I finally bought a commercial skin a few years into my Second Life I had to adjust my nose. The Curio “Acorn” skin made my nose look so narrow compared to the freebie skin I had been using, and this was before mesh (see here)!

Looks like I still have some tweakery to perform. After a few days with the new head, the eyes are still not quite right. Still adjusting my ears, too. But I’m very happy with the new skin.

Posted in home, Linden Lab, Second Life, Xandah

Extra Amazing; Extra Magical

Xanzyx Riverview Cottage 2
Linden homes have long been an amazing value, and since being given double prims they are extra amazing. My friend Xandah’s home is one of the fantasy-inspired Elderglen styles (Shire’s Hearth), one I’ve long favored, and she shares the space with a couple pixies so the cottage is extra magical.

That might be why I often find myself just hanging out in the cottage, even as Uccie. And there are times I’ll see my RL/SL brother’s avatar visiting, too. It’s just so warm and full of life. The theme is sort of India meets Fairie meets boho, a blending of all the characters that live in the cottage.

Posted in clothes, Flickr, nudity, scenic, Second Life, shopping

The 500$L Blouse

The 500$L Blouse

A demo for Layla’s Brooklyn Top has lived in my Demos folder for some time now, waiting for me to decide if I should spend 500$L or not. That’s expensive for a blouse in one color, even one that can be “stripped” like this one can. You or someone you allow can click the blouse to make it open up in steps until it is completely off. In this picture, it is four steps from full closed. The transparency can be adjusted, too. The stripping feature makes it several blouses, I suppose, but I still hesitated to buy it. Then I was dressing and thought of it when I put on Zaara’s Arpora Fisherman’s Pants (fitted mesh) *so chic* (a gacha purchase; SLurl) and got an idea. The pair would make a great, casual outfit for Summer. I zipped to the store (SLurl) and bought the blouse right away.

Location: Las Islas – Las Arenas, Second Life (SLurl) G-rated

Avatar details:

  • Skin: Lumae Eirtae – T7 – Nutmeg // Bare (Freck / Brow 4)
  • Hair: Ayashi Makoto hair-Fatpack
  • Eyes: theSkinnery Happy B-day! Eyes
  • Body: Maitreya Mesh with Mandala: Steking Unisex Ears – Season 5
  • Jewelry & Makeup: Aisling Circe [Chakra ThirdEye/DBlue] necklace; Punch Hoop Earrings; PUNCH / Nyan Belly Piercing (for Maitreya); kunst – Fox ring / gold; Luxuria Simple Liner and Shadow (smokey neutral); Gyaru Nose Tattoo; Mad Line Lips
Posted in avatar, body part, nudity, portrait, Second Life, self-portrait

Gravity Wins

As you will notice, this blog post is heavy on breasts. There’s a pun there somewhere. It all started when I happened across a “Saggy Breast Deformer” on the Second Life Marketplace. I think it was one of those featured “What Customers are Buying Now” items. And as I’m 30 years old in Real Life now, losing my battle with gravity, I was intrigued enough to show the item to my wife. Who promptly bought it for me. No idea why. But I thought it might make photos more realistic. If you are a busty woman you know what happens when you lay down. With this in mind, I’ve made some comparison photos.

The Maitreya mesh body is common to all the photos, but the body shape varies with the first slider settings for the images with Nifty Bits – Boobies Moundz, an “implant” option I’m fond of lately. The second set of sliders numbers is for an unenhanced Maitreya body:

Moundz- Enhanced Maitreya Body

  • 40 Breast Size
  • 50 Breast Buoyancy
  • 00 Breast Cleavage

Unenhanced Maitreya Body

  • 99 Breast Size
  • 50 Breast Buoyancy
  • 00 Breast Cleavage

Here’s a birds-eye view with Moundz and a fairly mild “3-2” deformer(top with the deformer; bottom without):
Moundz - Top

The same view without the Implants (top with the deformer; bottom without):
Std - Top

Examples of the effect from the side aren’t as dramatic but can be seen here (with Moundz) and here (without) on Flickr. Clicking the pictures above will take you to the embiggened ones on Flickr.

Keep in mind that just as important as body sliders and the use of Implants are body physics, pose/animation, and Avatar Physics settings in your viewer. Thus far, I haven’t come up with situations where I would use the deformers every day but the idea of using them for photos is intriguing.

*The deformer pack has four options for cleavage spread and 10 options for gravity sag. Depending on body slider settings and possible use of Implants (on mesh or system bodies) one of the options will be best.

Posted in avatar, character, role play, Second Life, Zyx Flux

The Age of Zyx

Zyx Flux SwimThere was something not quite right when I was helping Zyx pick out some slacks yesterday. She was as chipper always despite my insistence she shouldn’t flit about in jeans or shorts all the time that now she’s growing up. She readily picked out three pairs and looks fabulous in them. It was when she was thanking the clerk (I slipped the cash to her so she could pay) and turned to leave with her that I saw that her eyes were green. Normally they are blue and purple (one of each), like her guardian from the Nevernever. Notice her wings? Also green. Yesterday they were blue. Just when I was getting used to her baby wings firming up and becoming less delicate.

She’s growing up. My other friends from Faerie tell me a time of decisions for her is nigh.

Let me back up a bit. Zyx was nesting in a garden at the Isle of Lesbos, just a smidgen bigger than my hand and bright blue, a feisty but scared kid when I found her almost nine years ago. She had run away from Faerie and made it to our world. I noticed that the garden was thriving so I agreed to hire her as a Junior Assistant Gardener, 3rd Class (no such thing, but she insisted on a title) while I tried to find her relatives. Couldn’t leave a little kid alone, could I?

As time passed, Zyx grew and was eventually put on the Security team when she wanted more responsibility. She can throw pixy fire so we didn’t have to arm her for the job. It was about that time I hired her as a roaming reporter for this blog, too. She was happy with all this until the day Zyx showed up to be her guardian in this world. Yes, I get confused, too, as they seem to have the same name but they insist they don’t. For clarity here, let’s call the second one Big Zyx.

When I was able to contact Zyx’s family they sent Big Zyx to our world but not to drag her back to the Nevernever. This struck me as odd (clearly, something out the ordinary is going on), but Zyx was thrilled that she could stay. Since that day I’ve been learning quite a bit about the other realm. Like when Zyx showed up for work one day with a brown skin instead of her usual blue. I learned that was an early sign of fae puberty. From what I understand, though, her appearance here is simply a “glamor” and she remains as a tiny pixy back in Faerie, but she’s gone from blue to green over time. She still has dragonfly wings there, as well, and her magicks are stronger.

Color isn’t necessarily “race” in Faerie as it is in our world. Rather it is a reflection of who one is and which “Court” one aligns with when they are old enough. Many of you know about the Seelie and Unseelie, the former being the Summer Court and the latter being the Winter Court, each representing a major power group in the Nevernever. Big Zyx is clearly an Unseelie. Blue, cold, aloof. She doesn’t even speak to mortals.

Brown skin. Green eyes and wings. An intimate affinity with the flora of this world. I’ve even seen her take on the form of a dryad. Zyx, I thought, was going to be a Summer fae. Apparently, she has a choice. When she’s old enough she will have to choose or stay a Wyldfae, beholden to neither court but also not under the protection of either.

Which leaves me some questions:

  • What is next for the little pixy?
  • Why does she need a guardian? She can be pretty bad-ass.
  • Did the Summer Court send a guardian, too? If so … where?
  • Did Zyx arrive at Lesbos because I’m polychromatic … blue, brown, red, etc.?
  • Which Court will Zyx choose?
  • I’m afraid to ask, but does Zyx’s skin still turn obsidian when she’s really angry?
  • Why do all the fae I see her with act very deferentially?

Whatever the answers, I’m sure more questions will arise as Zyx continues to mature and more things will seem not just right.

Posted in avatar, Flickr, real life, Second Life

On Being Poly(chromatic)

On Being Poly(chromatic) 2
Some of the most wonderful people I know in Second Life never change their avatar. Ever. And haven’t in over a decade. On purpose. Others adamantly stick with one general concept: Unicorn, pre-teen, mole, faun, etc. They all have identities. Then there’s a few, like me, changing their avatar more often than they change their Real Life underwear.

What I change most often is my skin. By “I” and “my” and “me” the character Uccello Poultry should be inferred. My alts hardly change other than upgrades (newer wings, other hair, etc). Uccello is heavily polychromatic. Here she’s grey. When she logged in she was chocolate. Often people see her in a blue skin. This is something I’d rather like to do in Real Life. Might it end racism? Probably not. I’m Irish-born and there are places I wouldn’t be welcome regardless of color.

This isn’t meant to be a diatribe on any politically sensitive issue, though. Elsewhere I’ve written about being tired of identifying as Caucasian and related topics. Instead, I’m just expressing myself through polychromatism and how my attitudes about Uccello are changing. Of late, I’m trying to gel her overall look much as my other characters have. Xandah is far more upscale than Uccello and definitely favors Indian fashion. Zyx (not the young pixy) is somber, almost always in black, leaning toward otherworldly clothes and never, ever speaking. An alt I share with my brother is always a robot. And so forth with other alts, as you can imagine. Each also follows a strict rule of being in character at all times, except in private conversations with close friends.

Uccello is far more organic (a polite euphemism). Over the years I  haven’t tried to pin any standards to her and thus she has (and her Inventory has) become quite chaotic. Perhaps that’s because I am much the same in Real Life – rather directionless. My wardrobe is entirely bland, but I have never really developed me. I’ve gone from hiding in plain sight and avoiding people to being cooped up nearly 24/7 as a caregiver for a decade. Now that I’m 30 years old and really facing life more or less on my own, I need to start defining things. It is time I do so with Uccello, too.

Lately, she’s been wearing the same nose and lip stripe makeup at all times, tinting it as needed. Jewelry is far more common. Something blue is always worn even when her skin is not blue. And I’m trying to have her dress less like a trollop. Well, at least in public. All part of creating a more cohesive identity. Rather like growing up, I suppose.

Edit: After posting this I was reminded by someone of Robert A. Heinlein’s novel Friday, the story wherein an almost throwaway mention of a technology that allows one to change their skin made a devastating impact on a certain 10-year old girl, scarred from violence and wanting to be anyone but herself. Part of an identity, one might say.