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036 to 040 of 365

More of my Project 365 shots.  ^_^

036.  lemondrop's forest

Day 36 of 365 (02.05.10), Lemondrop’s Forest.

If you liked Photon Pink’s sim (I loved it!), then you will dig this sim, too.  That pink tree is massive!  This is a shot of the entire sim from a considerable distance, so that should give you an idea just how huge it is.  :-O

037.  KS Mira Blood

Day 37 of 365 (02.06.2010), Kouse’s Sanctum Mira Blood.

I was looking for locations to snap pics of my Mira gown in Blood (my favorite color!), by Kouse’s Sanctum. I paid a visit to the Lost World location and it’s a great place with ruins and whatnot.

038.  Lost World

Day 38 of 365 (02.07.2010), Lost World.

More of my visit to Lost World. This is a Must Visit location, imo!

039.  have an apple, my love

Day 39 of 365 (02.08.2010), have an apple, my love…

I ended up being “stuck” in Lost World for several days as I enjoyed taking snapshots in my Kouse’s Sanctum Mira gown and created my own poses to use, including this pose with the levitating apple.

I’m kind of proud of the fact that this shot is straight out of SL!  I tweaked Windlight and enabled shadows; the only post edit is the crop.

040.  At Lost World

Day 40 of 365 (02.09.2010), still at Lost World.

I switched from my Mira Blood gown to my Mira Meadow gown, and became a fairy.

Some style credits…

Gowns – Kouse’s Sanctum, Mira (Blood and Meadow colors)
Hair – friday, Yelena 2
Wings – Fancy Fairy, Aphrodite clear
Eyes (Day 039) – Negaposi, elfin eyes darkmatter

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February 12, 2010 Posted by | Fashion, Photography, Project 365 in 2010 | , , , , , | 3 Comments

031 – 035 of 365

More of my Project 365 images!

031.  hanging with vivi

Day 31 of 365, hanging with Vivi.
Vivi is one of my oldest and most trusted friends in SL.

One of my favorite things about Vivi is the way she plays at dressing up in SL!

032.  chairs

Day 32 of 365 (02.01.10), chairs.
Carson and I sitting in our matching chairs in our skybox. 🙂  I was in an experimental mood and played around with different filters on this shot.

033.  logout edit

Day 33 of 365 (02.02.10), logout edit.
I didn’t take any pics this day, so I cheated and grabbed the screenshot from my logout.

When I pulled up the image I thought my av looked a little lonely so I played around with the image in an attempt to make it a little blue and cold. I tried, anyway. 😛

034.  random headshot

Day 34 of 365 (02.03.10), random headshot.
Sometime last year, I wrote a blog post on giving your avatar subtle facial expressions.

I’m still trying to look for ways to give my avatar facial expressions that aren’t cartoonish, and I use the lip sync feature a lot. I think I’ve managed to make my av look like she’s surveying a scene with a little bit of surprise and contemplating saying something? 😀

035.  testing poses

Day 35 of 365 (02.04.10), testing poses.
I’m testing some poses I made for a blog post! Making poses for my blog is fun 😀

Some style credits…

Day 31:
Vivi’s outfit is from 110 prims (sorry, don’t know what it’s called)
My hair & skin is from LAQ (Tasha hairstyle, Imani2 skin)

Day 33:
Outfit – Deviance, Blue Belle (Magic & Romance Hunt item)
Hair – friday, Eloise
Shoes – Shiny Things, Hyasynths

Day 35:
T-shirt – T Junction, Team Lizzie custom t-shirt (T Junction will create custom tees)
Hair – Truth, Caroline (tinted the barrettes to match t-shirt)
Jeans – Armidi, Grace Jeans
Shoes – Detour, Mixflip Sneakers – Pink Hearts

February 7, 2010 Posted by | Fashion, Photography, Project 365 in 2010 | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

026 to 030 of 365

More of my Project 365 images.  ^_^

026.  home sweet home

Day 26 of 365, home sweet home.
I have a sweet looking SL home, thanks to Carson. ❤

027. admiring donna flora's doberman

Day 27 of 365, admiring donna flora’s doberman.
Found a Zooby doberman wandering around Donna Flora. Makes me want to go play with my yellow lab ^_^

028. baby & dog

Day 28 of 365, baby & dog.
I’ve had my yellow lab from Zooby’s for probably over two years, now. The dog has been updated lots of times since I got it, Zooby’s is really good about that. If Zooby’s stuff was cheaper I’d probably have an entire zoo by now, lol.

029.  red gown at rose theatre

Day 29 of 365, red gown at rose theatre.
I was experimenting with one of the photos I took for a recent blog post.

030.  caroline's jewelry:  m & c pendant

Day 30 of 365, caroline’s jewelry: M&C pendant.
I cheated and used one of my blog pics for my 365 pic, too. 😛 I didn’t have time to take any other pics that day! This image is from my post about skins and necklaces.

February 3, 2010 Posted by | Photography, Project 365 in 2010 | , , | Leave a comment

021 to 025 of 365

I think my latest images from my 365 project thingamajig kind of reflect the way I currently see SL fashion.  For me, it’s basically like being a kid again with all these crazy fun possibilities for letting your imagination go.  You can dress up as an alien, a superhero, or a mythical creature… it’s just endless!

None of it would be possible without the amazing content creators that grace our grid with their talents.  ❤  I normally don’t do the gushing fangirl thing and reach out to designers at random, but when I laid my eyes on the Laya hair demo from Exile I *had* to IM Kavar Cleanslate just to say “THANK YOU”.  I liked this hairstyle so much, I actually used it in three of the five shots I’m posting about!

Anyways 😛  Here are my latest…

021.  space queen

Day 21 of 365, at Inspire Space Park.
I was *trying* to give this image a comic book cover feel because I felt the pose came out looking sort of superhero-ish, but I’m not really sure what else I should do to it.

I think it’s looking a bit busy, though, with that background >.<

022.  snagged

Day 22 of 365, snagged.
Lol. \o/

Have I mentioned that Carson is awesome? ❤

023.  lashes

Day 23 of 365, lashes.
I really like these eyelashes that I got during the latest 60L Sunday, from Crimson + Clover. 60L Sunday has an INSANE amount of stuff but at least they’re really organized, allowing you to go through their notecard and quickly filter through everything.

I’m in the group as a merchant but I haven’t done any 60L releases myself. I am a lazy bum. I think I need to fix that!

024.  insilico plant

Day 24 of 365, insilico plant.
I shot some pictures for a blog post that I plan on putting up soon. This is one of the shots I took. I tried playing around with it to make it look like a painting? Not sure if I really succeeded in doing that. ^_^

025.  casting a spell

Day 25 of 365, casting a spell.
Kouse Singh made a recolor of her Hope gown and I had fun setting up some shots as a wicked fairy. I actually blogged this earlier and you can find that here.

Some style credits…

Image 021:
Hair – Exile, Laya
Outfit – Bare Rose, Echidna

Image 022:
Hair – friday, Neva.2
Dress – Musashi-Do, Tender Blossoms (limited edition color)

Image 023:
Hair – Exile, Laya
Eyelashes – Crimson + Clover, Blind Mag Lashes (60L Sunday)
Eyes – Nomine, orbital

Image 024:
Hair – Exile, Laya
Dress – Donna Flora, Jillian platinum (60L Sunday)
Boots – LAQ, Knee High Boots white

Image 025:
Gown – Kouse’s Sanctum, Hope for Haiti recolor
Wings – Fancy Fairy, Bloodvine ebony XLarge
Skin – Curio, Moonbeam Light Elf Happy Holidays (group gift)
Hair – Mau’s & Mej’s, Daiyu No Needle
Particles for hands – Pixel Mode, Pixel Dust Dance Particles white/pink
Eyes – Body Politik, Total Darkness
Poses – from my store, Mela’s

My skin is from LAQ.

January 27, 2010 Posted by | Fashion, Photography, Project 365 in 2010 | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

016 to 020 of 365

More of my Project 365 shots.

016.  dancing on the moon

Day 16 of 365, dancing on the moon.
I found out that the Life Is Good sim is actually going to remain open for another month! Porta Fosse happened to be present at the sim so I asked him, and he said it’s scheduled to close on February 15, not January 15th as I’d previously thought.

While I was there, my Plurk friend Quaintly appeared and I watched in amusement as her little green arrow on my mini-map chased his green arrow down, lol.

By the way, speaking of Plurk!  Plurk is fun, there’s tons of SL’ers on there and it’s become a great tool for networking, getting to know your SL acquaintances a little better, or sometimes it’s just good for laughs.  It’s also addictive and they’ve sort of made it into a kind-of-game by awarding “karma points” for your activity.  I’m currently trying to enlist three more people so that I can unlock the “idiot” smilie (lol) sooooo… if you don’t have a Plurk account and want one, please please sign up using my link?!  CLICK CLICK, YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO HELP ME GET MY SPECIAL SMILIES!

017.  baby pose

Day 17 of 365, baby pose.
Yes, I’ve become obsessed with my Zooby baby.

The baby has an AO built in so that when you ‘attach’ it, you can opt to have it sleeping in your arms, etc. The AO doesn’t touch the avatar legs, though, so you will have the noobish looking default anims on the bottom half of the av (but there is a nicely done walk anim included).

Getting my av to pose like this was slightly tricky, because my av’s head kept moving every which way and then her eyes wouldn’t focus where I wanted them to.

I finally got it though, and now I’m kind of toying with the idea of making baby poses.  Just for fun. 😛

018. last day of WinterChoice

Day 18 of 365, last day of WinterChoice.
Carson and I went to the WinterChoice Event Hall to do some last minute exchanging of cards.

I ❤ Carson 😀

019. hanging with the Deep Ones

Day 19 of 365, me and Baby Coqui with our new friends. 😛
I blogged about my visit to Innsmouth on a previous post, you can read about it here!

020. quick snapshot with carson

Day 20 of 365, I snuck a quick pic with Carson while we were both logged in. I wasn’t in SL very much on this day, and this was the only picture I took. I think Carson doesn’t like this picture, oops! 😡

So there you have it, my latest set of five images for my 365 project.  🙂  I’d originally intended for my 365 to consist exclusively of simple, unedited shots straight out of SL.  I quickly discovered that I sometimes want to play with the images, however, whether it’s simply cleaning up some sharp corners on the avatar body or just enhancing the light a little bit.  It’s fun!

I’m really just kind of fumbling about, though, when I play with filters and layers and what not.  Hell, I only just recently discovered how you can get more control over your black and white image by playing with the different channels under Hue/Saturate!  (Carson taught me that 😀 ) (PS CS3 has a black and white conversion tool that’s pretty neat, too.)

Hopefully, if I stick this project out and see it all the way through, I will see some kind of measure of improvement in my pics.  Hopefully.  😛

+++

Some style credits…

Image 017:

Hair – Truth, Belinda
Nightie – Edelweiss, Night Wear Irie

Image 019:

Hair – Maitreya, Sasha
Top – MNK Shop, Knit Sweater Red
Jeans – Armidi Limited, A001 Jeans, black classic
Glasses – House of Curios, Rectangle Framed Glasses #001

Image 020:

Hair – LAQ, Tess (must be worn with a hairbase skin)

My skin is from LAQ.

January 27, 2010 Posted by | Fashion, Photography, Project 365 in 2010 | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dark Fairy

I got the Hope for Haiti gown recolor from Kouse’s Sanctum last night and immediately began taking some fun snapshots with it.

For an hour or so, I was a wicked fairy alone in the forest at dusk, up to no good and casting spells for dark and selfish reasons.  ❤

025.  casting a spell

dark fairy

I really love Windlight.  The two shots I’ve posted here are unedited and straight out of SL, save for some cropping adjustments.

I normally don’t wear facelights, but I did bust out my old ones from Gaynor Gritzi that I got all the way back in 2007.  I’m not sure if she sells her facelights anymore, but every now and then I find them useful for lighting up pictures in interesting ways.  The lights come with roughly a dozen different color presets, and they’re not obnoxiously bright.

The wings are one of my favorites in my inventory, from Fancy Fairy.  These are the Bloodvine wings and they’re scripted to respond to chat commands that make them flutter or stand up rigidly.

If you like taking fantasy pictures or if you just plain love flouncing about in gowns, the Hope for Haiti gown is one option to look at.  Plus, it’s just a couple of bucks that will be sent where help is really needed right now. 🙂

Credits…
Gown – Kouse’s Sanctum, Hope for Haiti recolor
Wings – Fancy Fairy, Bloodvine ebony XLarge
Skin – Curio, Moonbeam Light Elf Happy Holidays (group gift)
Hair – Mau’s & Mej’s, Daiyu No Needle
Particles for hands – Pixel Mode, Pixel Dust Dance Particles white/pink
Eyes – Body Politik, Total Darkness
Poses – from my store, Mela’s! 😛

January 26, 2010 Posted by | Fashion, Photography, Second Life | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Visiting Innsmouth

I recently visited Innsmouth (this sim is based on Lovecraft’s work, of course) because that was the latest location specified in one of my newest favorite flickr groups, The Rashomon Project. The build and atmosphere are fantastic, and this is one of those spots in SL that you really should visit if you haven’t already done so.

welcome to innsmouth

Yes, I’m a bad SL mom.  I haul my prim baby to all sorts of creepy locations.

innsmouth is a bit run down ;p

The build is fantastic, from the textures to the ambient sounds.

levitating book

Levitating book… spooky!

something lurks in the distance

Something is lurking in the distance…

019. hanging with the Deep Ones

Hanging out with the Deep Ones.  I think this might be my favorite Zooby baby shot.  My friend Vivi told me I should’ve placed my baby in the monster’s mouth for this pic.  :-O

cthulhu

This last shot was my submission for the Rashomon project group.  I thought it’d be nice to get an underwater perspective, but I forgot I had shadows enabled so there’s no anti-aliasing, wups.  (I’ve a few more pics from my visit to Innsmouth that didn’t make it into this post.  If you’re curious, you can check out my Innsmouth flickr set.)

walk in the snow

Of course, one of the joys of meandering about SL is dressing up your avatar and taking snapshots of the places you’ve visited.  Well, for me anyway. 😛  I really liked the outfit I put together for my visit to the Innsmouth sim and I ended up wearing it for a couple of days.

And I confess, I also like dressing up my Zooby baby.  They sell baby clothes, and uh… yeah I’ve bought three outfits already, lol.  So far I’ve bought her a dress, a t-shirt and jeans, and now a sweater/denim skirt/tights set.  I put the Zooby Heart Top & Denim Skirt set on her for these pics because I felt that outfit came closest to looking like winter clothes.  My friend Gogo says I might need a Zooby intervention 😛  I don’t think I’m that far gone!

Anyways, back to my outfit:  I took another picture at the IDIA Laboratories sim to get a better shot of it.  Here are the details for it:

Hair – Maitreya – Sasha, bistre
Top – MNK Shop – Knit Sweater Red
Jeans – Armidi Limited – A001 Jeans, black classic
Boots – Reek – Autumn Boots, Red! (50L Friday)
Glasses – House of Curios, Rectangle Framed Glasses #001
Skin – LAQ, Trisha

January 26, 2010 Posted by | Fashion, Photography, SL Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

011 – 015 of 365

More of my Project 365 shots.

011. pathfinder lowlands

Day 11 of 365.
Every now and then I like to stalk Chris Palen’s flickr stream. I haven’t seen him in SL very much these days, but when he does log in he often ends up taking some fantastic photos.

I paid a visit to the Pathfinder Lowlands because of this shot of his:www.flickr.com/photos/chris_palen/3657777012/

012.  dawn at japan kanto

Day 12 of 365. Shot at Japan Kanto sim for the Rashomon Project.  (You should join this group if you already haven’t!  Queen Coronet sends us to great locations to take our shots.)

013.  room with a chair

Day 13 of 365, room with a chair. I revisited the REZ sim and found things were quite different since my last visit.

014.  losing time at Bare Rose

Day 14 of 365, losing time at Bare Rose. Love this store! When I go there I’m guaranteed to spend a lot of time just staring at everything.

015.  working on stuff for my store

Day 15 of 365, working on stuff for my store.
I first opened my store, Mela’s, over two years ago. I had this tiny 40-prim rental on a sim called The LOLO.

My shop has grown a little bit since then, and it now sits on a quarter sim parcel on a region that is called, purely by coincidence, Lo Lo. 🙂

This shot was taken in my workstudio area.

January 22, 2010 Posted by | Photography, Project 365 in 2010 | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Project 365

I saw a few Plurk friends starting their own “Project 365” on New Year’s Day, and I figured I’d start my own, too. In case you haven’t heard of it yet, it’s basically just a project where you take one shot per day, for an entire year. I actually tried doing something like this in RL a few years back and it’s pretty difficult to keep up with; I gave up roughly 30 days into it. 😛  I think it’ll be easier to stick to in SL.

I’d originally intended for my entire 365 to be comprised of purely in-world, unprocessed shots… but I eventually yielded to the desire to retouch some sharp avatar corners when I took my latest picture with my prim baby, lol. Anyway, here are the first five days’ worth of shots I’ve taken:

001.

001.  Checking out some neat driftwood at G-Field.

002.

002.  Working at LAQ is a huge, huge part of my SLife. I’ve been working here for over two years, from when it was originally called RaC.

Handing in my work application to Mallory and Winter was one of the best SL decisions I’ve ever made. 🙂 They’re among the nicest people I know of in SL and they’ve done so much for me, I don’t think I could ever really repay their kindness.

003.

003.  One of the best parts of my SL is my partner, Carson Koenkamp. ❤

Who knew that the random guy I decided to say ‘hello’ to almost three years ago at Mill Pond would turn out to be one of my best friends?  Grabbed this shot while we were hanging out in our sweet little home in the sky this evening.

004.

004.  Running through the jungle.

I was taking pics with my friend Vivi in some of the Costa Rica sims. We recently bought some hot new tribal type outfits from Bare Rose and were taking pics for a blog post. 😀  (I tend to do this a lot xD  Take a bunch of shots for a blog post and then end up not posting for maybe a couple of weeks.)

005.  toward the light

005.  Move toward light; Ahern Welcome Area, for the Rashomon Project group.  (This is a group started by Queen Coronet that is basically about a bunch of people all depicting the same subject but with their own spin on it.  If that sounds like your sort of thing, please join!  🙂 )

I crashed twice while taking shots here; one of my attempts included shadows. I gave up after the second crash and decided to stick with this image ~.~  No post-processing was done on this shot.

January 9, 2010 Posted by | Blogging, Fashion, Photography, Project 365 in 2010 | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

subtle facial expressions

(Note:  you can click on all of the images for this post to bring up larger versions on my flickr page.)

About 99.9% of the time, I run my avatar around with a neutral expression on her face. When I’m taking snapshots, I’ll sometimes hit the Emote function in my MystiTool to get her to crack a big smile or some other fun facial animation:

SL facial animations

You can take the whole facial animation thing a step further with London Spengler’s Pandora FACE 2.0, which basically allows you to play two SL facial expressions at the same time, making for all sorts of possible combinations.

As much as I adore the facial animations that are available in SL, sometimes they’re a tad cartoonish for my purposes.  Just the other day, as I was setting up a picture of my av at a beach sim (Mori Pwani sim, my Plurk friend Lissa Pinion has now got me hooked on playing on the waves there) I realized I wanted my avatar to have a subtle, Mona Lisa-ish smile to go along with the looking-over-her-shoulder-at-the-camera pose.  To accomplish that, I decided to create variations on my avatar’s face shape and these are some of the results I got:

subtle expressions via slidersWhile working on editing my shape, I recalled talking with an SL photographer about a year ago on the subject of getting more facial expressions beyond the ones already built into SL.  Perhaps editing my face shape seemed like an obvious answer to me because I work with shapes a lot for my store, but it was something that had not occurred to him to try.

So, I figured I’d write about it on my blog, and share what sliders I edited to create my subtle facial expressions.  ^_^

To create my avatar’s melancholy expression, these are the sliders I edited:

Shape…
Eyes > Eye Opening:  slightly wider
Eyes > Outer Eye Corner: slightly more down
Mouth > Lip Width:  slightly narrower
Mouth > Mouth Corner:  corner down

Your eyebrows are also an important part of creating a facial expression.   (To edit your eyebrow shape, you must go into Edit Appearance > Hair > Eyebrows.)   These are the slider adjustments I made for my melancholy emote:

System Hair…
Eyebrows > Eyebrow Height:  slightly higher
Eyebrows > Eyebrow Points:  smoother

For my avatar’s stern expression, these are the slider edits I made:

Shape…
Eyes >   Eye Opening:  slightly narrower
Mouth > Lip Width:  slightly narrower
Mouth > Lip Ratio:  slightly more lower lip
Mouth > Mouth Corner:  slightly more corner down

System Hair…
Eyebrows > Eyebrow Height:  lower (i.e., I went from 77 to 92)
Eyebrows > Eyebrow Arc:  slightly less arced

For my avatar’s subtle grin, I made these slider adjustments:

Shape…
Eyes > Eye Opening:  slightly narrower
Mouth > Lip Width:  slightly narrower
Mouth > Mouth Corner:  slightly more corner up
Mouth > Lip Ratio:  slightly more lower lip
Chin > Jaw Jut:  very slightly more underbite

System Hair…
no changes

Those are only three examples, but that should give you a pretty good idea of what sliders you’d want to touch when editing your own shape for creating more subtle expressions.  (As a side note, it is for reasons like this that I stopped selling No Modify shapes in my shop.  Modify shapes ftw!)

While I was working on my shape edits, I was conversing with Gogo.  I asked her, “If you could order up new facial animations from Linden Lab, what would you ask for?”  A couple of the things that ended up on our list of emotes we’d like to see were a slight parting of the lips, and a pout.  I learned from our discussion that one way to accomplish the slight parting of lips effect is to enable Slow Motion animations in the Advanced menu, then hit the smile emote and try to catch your avatar in a snapshot right as the animation starts.  This can end up involving a lot of repeat attempts as you try to capture the right moment of the animation.

The SL client now has a lip sync function built in for Voice users, so this gives us even more options now.  ^_^  Using Voice, lip sync, and my edited expression shapes, here are some of the results I came up with:

shape plus lipsync

My favorites are the pouts with the slightly parted lips, hehe.  My friend Vivi told me that lip sync should be on by default for people using the 1.23 official viewer.  If you’re using an older viewer, you will need to go into your Advanced menu to turn that function on:

enable lip sync

Okay, so how exactly did I use Voice/lip sync to get those shots? Simple:  after enabling the lip sync function and wearing my newly edited expression shapes/brows, I put Weezer on my WinAmp player and parked the microphone next to the speaker, lol.   The music over the mic caused my avatar’s speech animations to start up, and I was able to capture quite a few interesting results.  That’s pretty much it!  Perhaps one day some clever scripter will be able to come up with a HUD that takes advantage of all the possible mouth animations that lip sync utilizes, making this even more easy to accomplish…

P.s.  On an entirely unrelated note, I am really digging this new Anna hair that I’ve bought from LeLutka.  It kind of reminds me of the way your hair will look after you’ve spent the day at the beach ❤

Credits:
Skin – Laqroki Kira
Hair – LeLutka Anna
Eyes – Exodi Twilight Anger
Hair flower – G-Field Hibiscus crystal pink

July 3, 2009 Posted by | Fashion, Photography | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments