Friday, December 16, 2011

Solstice-time Stirrings and Doings

Inworldz Holiday Gala

The Inworldz Holiday Gala is now open to the viewing public and it is spectacular. This year's chosen benefit charity is the well-known Toys For Tots, a program begun by the US Marine Corps Reserve in 1947 by reservist Major William L. Hendricks. Kiosks for donations are set up near all the builds, and donations will be gathered and sent to Toys For Tots.

In previous years in Second Life, the inworld Toys For Tots campaigns have raised substantial amounts to benefit this charity. Please come and visit this wondrous winter carnival and send a donation to a child for the holidays.

As mentioned, the builds are really gorgeous; given Inworldz' prim allowances, size (dis)constraints and the creativity of the residents, the builders have really outdone themselves.

There is a Santa's Workshop, a fantasy Ice Forest of magical creatures, ice skating, a beautifully-done train which encircles the entire Gala and can be hopped on for a relaxing tour, horse-drawn carriages, winter hay bale tour carts, and of course lots and lots of snow and blinky lights.

There are also some "warm-weather" areas for the folks Down Under and other peoples for whom it is warm and dry this time of year. This is a no-advertising, no-selling event so come and enjoy the energy and creativity shown here.

Scene from 'The Longest Night' at the Holiday Gala

This is my own build, one scene from the storyboard for my film-in-planning, 'The Longest Night," which will incorporate several of my major pieces. You might recognize 'Big Winter' and 'Solstice Tree,' two of the elements which inspired the whole story of the film.

Tawa (Hopi Sun Katsina)

The Hopi Sun Katsinam are the new element; they dance around the Woman sleeping in the snow to a loop from the soundtrack (completed late this Spring) for the film. The build also features a 5-directional particle blizzard of cross-blowing, whirling snow. You can see more closeups of the detail on the Katsinam in this Flickr set.

You can also find gifts under the huge (monstrous, gigantic, words-cannot-encompass-its-Yggdrasil-like-volume) Yule Tree set up in the center of the Holiday Gala, including this small one from me:

Brushed Silver Angel jewelry set

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Second Life doings

... over on the Second Life side of the grid, you might be the recipient of my Solstice Gift: a teeny companion Bear that clings to your upper arm (or other chosen attachment point) and protects you from grumbleyheads. Yes, he is small, but I assure you, he is fierce! (the knot is almost gone from my shoulders from working on him at micro-prim level; I am now spoiled by Inworldz' prim scalability for making-tiny)

This little Bear is a childhood memory of Clippy Bears, a fad that started with little bears and branched out to all kinds of animals (I remember monkeys and kittens) that you'd clip to your hair, shoelaces, backpack, jacket (even a punk black-leather jacket).

This Bear is small but has a large heart

VWER special Arts Panel

It was my pleasure and honor to be invited to speak at the Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable Arts 2011 panel along with my friends soror Nishi and Wizard Gynoid as artists active in SL, OpenSim and other grids to talk about making art and life as an artist working in immersive 3D settings.

Chaired by Ignatius Onomatopoeia [RL Joe Essid, a faculty member in the departments of English & Rhetoric & Communication Studies at the University of Richmond], the panel was a stellar Who's Who of educators and artists working in virtual environments; among the luminaries were Merlin Moonshadow, Elphaba Helendale, Delightful Doowangle, Grizzla Pixelmaid, Wrenaria Antiesse, Sam55 Chester, Ridvan Atolia, Zotarah Shepherd, Kavon Zenovka, Sheila Yoshikawa, Rachelle Monroe, Frankie Antonelli, Lyr Lobo, snow Scarmon, Praxislady Witt, BackWoods Texan, barbarathelibrarian Magic, LoCE99Ch8 Morpork, Kali Pizzaro, Shailey Garfield, Nava Wonder, Claudia13 Rossini, Tomkin Euler... PHEW!

24 on the sim at the conference, including the renowned Pathfinder Lester, Hypergridnaut extraordinaire [who "just likes to poke around"] and who surprised and flattered me with several nice comments about my piece "Commodity" (awee was I pleased!).

We talked about Unity3D, making a living as an artist (VR/RL), barriers to real-time collaboration, hardware/bandwidth/latency problems in collaborating, the patron model of support, 3D printing, RL/VR crossover work, WebGL, the problem of deliberate retardation of tech because of trying to "corner the market" and locking up collaboration/variation, what grids we all explore/work in and why, future models of revenue/support for virtual reality, the wonder of people exposed to making in virtual worlds as opposed to merely consuming, machinima as a way to reach people unable to get into VR, preservation of virtual art for future collectors/buyers, computers as a tool for creators and... my spleen :D [there were some possible future-organleggers at this meeting!]

Plus a discussion of whether Iggy's companion Raven should have either a small Santa hat or elf ears for the holidays (you know which one I voted for).

It was a wonderful and heady experience and I am very grateful and honored to have been asked to attend. Soon, I am told, a transcript of this session will be available on the VWER site in the Library section (as soon as the site is rebuilt, although there are links there now to past conferences which are a great resource and well-worth exploring).

Now, if you'll excuse me, I must go make a kidney for Pathfinder before he comes in the night to collect one...

The Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable Arts 2011 panel

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Wizzy Gynoid said...

that bear looks like he's humping your leg.
(why is the capcha "asholls"?)

Miso Susanowa said...

Be...cause... you need to check your anatomy; that is my arm. Does this give you problems on dates? Perhaps glasses might help...

Wizzy Gynoid said...

i stand corrected. that bear is humping your arm.

Botgirl Questi said...

Congratulations on all of your recent recognition!

Anonymous said...

LMAO Wizzy :D I never leave him at home! He is my guardian angel <3

Iggy O said...

It was big ol' fun, Miso. I'm going to post our transcript in just a few moments...still gathering photos.

I ended up leaving said Raven at the House of Usher and wore that little bear with the hat you gave me! He was a big hit at our holiday party...Happy New Year!