Huntress

I’m going to be shooting in The Shrine Tree today, but if you know anything at all about me, you know that it takes forever for me to put together an outfit. This is something of a joke in my role-play group. I put together a couple of test shots with this outfit, because it’s special. And yeah; that means I’m going to talk about an outfit. Don’t worry: I promise there will be stories this Faire. I promise!

When you blog a Fantasy Faire, you get to sample some wonderful items. You get some amazing things from some of the best and best known creators in Second Life. Sometimes creators you’ve never come across before come into your life, and sometimes beloved creators you despaired of ever seeing anything new from rain beauty down upon you and wonderfulness happens. This is one of those times.

Now, you guys know my heart belongs to Lumae Skins— but there is no one, absolutely no one, better at creating glorious hand-painted skins than Vae of The PlastikThis year, she has released a line of skins with markings that might be mer, might be fae, can be anything, and as usual, they come in an astounding array of colours. The skin line is called Amathela, and this is the special RFL colour, Aleatrice.

The Plastik makes some of the most beautiful fantasy skins on the grid, so they’re in the ‘best and best known creators’ slot in this sentence. Magika hair rebranded not long ago and their new textures are absolutely to die for, particularly if you like things that are glittery and iridescent. I’ve been wearing the Genus Project heads off and on since they were in beta, but this is the first time I’ve photographed the Baby Face head. These stunning purple eyes are from Musaalso an RFL item; they are the Amla Eyes. The creator I’d never encountered before here is Kotolierand I’ve already blogged one of their beautiful, simple circlet and bracelet sets in a previous blog post. Against the complexity of the skin, against some of the complicated hairstyles and dresses Gwyneth wears, these stunning little circlets particularly will be part of my Second Life wardrobe for a long time to come. The wings are from Evolved Creatures, a gift from the glorious Dyisi from a couple of Fantasy Faires back, when we discovered them being used as part of the costumes for the Fairelands Players’ production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. These lovely, whimsical shoes are the Evie Sandals (and you’ll get why that’s so cool, if you haven’t already, in a minute!) from 1313 Mockingbird Lane, who always manage to create the most fun, quirky, whimsical-goth-ignited loveliness you’ve ever seen. But oh, oh, oh, my darlings! And Oh! again. You may remember that a few years back, I joyfully and enthusiastically blogged every single new Evie’s Closet release that I could, given time constraints and the fact that, well, you just can’t always take as many pictures as she has colours. Real Life has taken the talented (and downright niceEvangeline Miles away from Second Life for some time, and my thought was that she was so so busy she was unlikely to come back. Well, you may already know this, but Evie has a Fantasy Faire store up on the Midas region, and there are some absolutely gorgeous things there! In fact, discovering that Evie had new things will be making changes in my blog plans for the rest of the Faire, because every single release in her store is glorious and gorgeous, and I bought all of them. I absolutely did, and I’d do it again.

Gwyneth has never been a racy dresser. It comes from a background in academia, plus the pressures of being a Queen, plus my strong believe that an avatar doesn’t have to bare a lot of skin to be beautiful or desirable. So believe me when I say that I thought this was the dress I wouldn’t blog from Evie’s Closet this time around.

I was wrong.

Huntress BLOG - 1

Huntress

Honestly, I have no idea what came over me! I suspect this came out of a conversation between the glorious Riven of RivendaleDyisi of Dyisiwood, and me. Riven is updating her avatar look and was looking for a skin or tattoo that would give her an iridescent glow. So I wanted to try the Plastik skin anyway, and the Genus Project heads have some great glow settings. I was trying to create a look that both shimmered and was interesting to look at for reasons other than the shimmeriness, and I think I did all right. I chose the Soul Uni Ears—Luin because The Plastik makes appliers specifically for them, and their shape works interestingly with the skin itself. Vae offers two versions of this ear applier: this is the non-Mer one.

This backdrop, Little Red, is from the clever minds at Adorably Strange Wares, another of those gloriously whimsical, kinda gothy but also sparkly creators I love so much. It’s one of their RFL items, and there are three more of these in their Faire store! Interestingly, the whole thing is an enclosure with sides that are alpha from the outside. The back of this side is the Deep Dark Forest, but the other side shows a fairytale castle. It’s a fun and versatile backdrop that I’ll probably use many times, maybe even before the Faire is over!

Later today, I’ll shoot some story blog photos in The Shrine Tree, and I think this outfit will really shine there.

Huntress AFP - 1

Close-up

Here is a shot of Gwyneth’s face, same pose (from Poseidon, by the way, also at the Faire!), just a slightly different camera angle. Poseidon is an old favourite of mine, and their fantasy poses are always smooth and come with great attention to detail (and in this case, a pretty spiffy dagger!)

I shot this in a flat, straight windlight, on Awenia, and the soft pink lights of the LumiPro area the only additional colour that’s been added to the photograph. Both photos were edited in Affinity Photo for the Mac; they have had a tiny touch of diffuse glow (at about 5% opacity), a lens blur of 1 pixel applied, and a matte filter with the desaturation effect stripped away.

Thanks for listening to me yammer on and basically fangirl this outfit for like four paragraphs. I appreciate your making it to the end of the post, and if you were here, I’d give you a cookie.

 

 

Glimpses of the Light of Va’loth

Valoth BLOG - 1

Beacon

Sometimes, a focal point is so overwhelming it’s the only thing you see. That’s why it’s a focal point, after all. That’s what it’s like in Light of Va’loth. The towering statue, be she goddess, heroine, or legend, is impossible to look away from: she is visible from nearly every point on the region, and she carries a bright light. She is mysterious and fascinating, impossible to ignore.

Valoth BLOG - 3

A bright beacon

She’s so bright, she might even be blinding. That’s why, once you’ve spent your time staring at and being overwhelmed by She whom we can only assume is the Light, Herself, consider turning away.

Consider looking at the rivers, the bridges, the buildings, the trees, as if they were not overwhelmed by this light.

Consider the clarity of the water, the lovingly layered levels of an ancient (Elven?) city. Consider the lights that hang from the trees.

Valoth BLOG - 2

Dancing Green

Imagine yourself and your beloved on Va’loth’s dancing green, yes, still in her shadow, but protected now, by her stone sleeves, from whatever approaches above; in this bower, you are safe.

Valoth BLOG - 4

What you could miss

And really, just think: If you turned toward the Light and stared only at the Light, you might find yourself slow-moving as a statue or an unfortunate troll in the morning. You might find yourself so hypnotised, so mesmerised, by that light, by the hope it carries, that movement, thought, the passive understanding of what happens around you, all these things might fade. And there you would be, a silhouette, one foot poised toward the next step, staring at a light.

It’s enough to make you wonder, isn’t it: What was She staring at?

But, what is Gwyneth wearing?
Fantasy Faire Featured Items (all links point to the specific store where you can find the item):
Gown: Silvan Moon Designs, Aetheria Gown, in Lapis (Get this dress at the Silvan Moon Designs store in the Midas region!)
Halo: Air, Gothic Halo, in Gold (Get this item at the Air store in the Shrine Tree Region!)
Circlet and bracelets: Kotolier, Herba bracelets and Circlet in Gold. (Get these at the Kotolier store in the Midas region!)
Torc: Lassitude & Ennui, Torc Necklace, Dragon, in gold. (Get this at the Lassitude & Ennui store in the Midas region!)
Eyes: Musa, Amla Eyes RFL edition. (Get these at the Musa store in the Sanguinely Garden region!)
Everything Else:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Genus Project, Baby Face
Skin: Lumae, Genus Project Elska Applier T1 (All current skin lines are now available for just L$100 at the Lumae Main Store!)
Ears: Swallow, Elf Ears High Definition
Hair: Analog Dog (natch), Mali

The Light of Va’loth is one of the 2019 Fantasy Faire regions. It is sponsored by Titans and Solarium and designed by Kilik Lekvoda. I am sure I will be setting some stories here as the Faire progresses.

Vistas

Since my first Fantasy Faire in 2014, and in the five subsequent years I’ve been blogging, helping with LitFest, working together with friends on collaborative writing projects for the Faire, and even helping with sponsoring regions and offering little bits and pieces of world building, I’m amazed with the sheer scope of the event. I love not only the little details of each region, but the beauty of regions viewed from other regions.

Tensor's Vistas BLOG - 7

Trollhaugen and Tensor’s Flying Market

This year, I got the opportunity to help with a region that is literally a flying machine. One of the things Riven had in mind when the designed Tensor’s Flying Market was what amazing views Fairelanders could experience from its many balconies, windowed gardens, and floating islands.

Tensor's Vistas BLOG - 8

The Highest Point

From the highest point of the Market, where the wind ships dock, you can look down upon the stunning Fairelands Junction and Midas regions in their entirety.

Tensor's Vistas BLOG - 3

Wind Ships

Of course, the wind ships themselves are lovely to look upon, even from a distance.

Tensor's Vistas BLOG - 4

Midas from one of the western lounges

Every level of the Flying Market is built with what can be seen beyond it in mind. I love these garden lattices, reminiscent of Mashrabiya I recall seeing in Singapore and other points east.

Tensor's Vistas BLOG - 5

Trollhaugen from the east side of Tensor’s Flying Market

Each of the lounges has plenty of seating space for Fairelanders who need a rest, or just a little space away from the rest of the Faire. You’ll find them throughout the Flying Market.

Tensor's Vistas BLOG - 9

So many stunning views

There are so many stunning views that I have spent most of the last 24 hours capturing as many as I could from this side of the Faire. It’s enough to make me want to concentrate on these beautiful views for the rest of the event, though I know at some point the story gods will take over.

Get to the important bit! What’s Gwyneth Wearing?

Seriously. Is this not a spectacular dress? It’s from Poet’s Heartand their store is located in the beautiful Shrine Tree region, sponsored by The Looking Glass and designed by Sharni Azalee and Marcus Inkpen.

The Dryad tattoo comes from Seydr, also to be found in Shrine Tree. Gwyneth is wearing Crystal, and I thought it worked beautifully with both the gown and the hair from Magika. (Nina is a relatively new release, but alas, you’ll have to leave the Fairelands to find the Magika Main Store).

These beautiful eyes are from Musa, called Sphene. They are Omega eye appliers, and this is one of the RFL colours. Must makes its home in Sanguinely Garden, sponsored by United InshCon and designed by Eldowyn Inshan and Katz Republic.

This stunning tiara comes from Zuri, as so many beautiful crowns do. Zuri have their Fairelands home in Nightshade Blossoms, sponsored by Secrets of Gaia and designed by Rowan Thursday and Kylie Todriya.

Everything else is pretty standard for Gwyneth: Maitreya mesh body, skin from Lumae, ears from Swallow.

Don’t forget to keep checking in on the blog throughout the Faire: I’ll be posting at least every couple of days, and I have a lot more beautiful places and clothes and skins and sparkly bits to show you!

Tensor's Vistas BLOG - 6

 

Fairy Dancer

It’s not often that I dedicate a whole blog post to a single dress: I can only think of one or two times where it’s happened before.

But there’s a special kind of grace to a dress made for dance with prim skirts swaying in a world of mesh, as if Isadora Duncan floated into a New York City ballet class near the turn of the 20th century.

FairyDancer BLOG - 4

Prim skirts swaying in a world of mesh

Designer Geryn Sloane, the creative mind behind G Sloane, describes this dress as “old school”, and in terms of Second Life design, I suppose she is right. But I didn’t feel “old school” when I wore this beautiful dress around SL the day I photographed it. I just felt like a dancer. Maybe that’s because I remember great prim clothing designers, some of whom didn’t make the leap to mesh and have faded into the all too ephemeral Second Life past.

FairyDancer BLOG - 2

A sense of power

There’s a sense of power about this dress, even though its details are delicate: the lovingly textured floral pattern on the applier bodice and pelvis, the right leg, are of that pink and purple mixture that you would, if you’re like me, probably associate with something called “Fairy Dancer”. Even if you’d never seen the dress, you’d possibly describe it like that. The ragged hem with its floating blossoms rounds out the free-spirited style, and that is an excellent touch. You could be wisteria in this dress. You could be Rose of Sharon. You could be a flower in the wind.

FairyDancer BLOG - 1

A flair for the dramatic

There’s no shortage of potential stories with a dress like this, either. I confess, I almost wrote a story around it and then decided it would be more fun just to natter on about the dress, for once.

But where can you get this dress? It’s available TODAY at the Spoonful of Sugar Festival in Second Life.

The Spoonful of Sugar Festival is a charity event benefiting Doctors Without Borders. Doctors Without Borders sends medical aid to places where need is great, like conflict zones. They support humanitarian causes and report on the problems they see. Nearly 90% of donations to Doctors Without Borders goes straight to the work itself.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: LAQ, Athena Bento Mesh Head
Skin: Lumae, Elentari, with face Elvi (for LAQ and GA/EG heads)
Hair: Analog Dog (natch), Merida (because with an outfit like this, if the hair doesn’t move, you might as well stay home!) You can pick this up at the Analog Dog Main Store.
Eyes: Seydr, Versicolor Eyes
Cosmetics: Cazimi, Glitter Cheeks, Festival Eyeshadow, Tinted Lip Gloss
Nails: Insomnia Angel, Sorcery Nails (Available NOW at The Fantasy Collective!)
Dress: G Sloane, Fairy Dancer (Available TODAY at the Spoonful of Sugar Festival!)
Body Jewellery: L.I.C., Gold Standard (And many thanks to Lindy for following me on Flickr; otherwise I’d never have looked through her photostream and found this beautiful and very versatile set. There’s much more to it than I’m showing in these photographs!)

Environment:
Location: The Box, Awenia
Lighting: Sometimes LumiPro, sometimes a single soft spot projector
Poses: Musa, from the Fantasy Poses series (plural: series singular and plural, like sheep, are spelled the same in English. I had to double check that with Dr Google)

I think I’m Paranoid….

Have you ever had that feeling, the one where you’re sure someone is watching you, or following you, but then when you turn around, there’s nothing there?

watchingme BLOG - 3 (1)

I think I’m paranoid

I think I’m paranoid, or at least I was in last night’s dream. I was walking down this completely unreal corridor, because no one would paint an actual corridor that shade of teal. I mean, if they did, I wouldn’t know them. And I was certain, just positive, that I was being followed, except when I turned around there was nothing there.

Now, I’ve lived in the magical universe long enough to know that it’s possible for something invisible to be following me. But I’m also magical enough to know when something invisible is following me. And there wasn’t a thing there, I swear.

watchingme BLOG - 2 (1)

And complicated….

To make it more complicated, every time I turned back forward, I’d get the feeling again. There wasn’t anybody else around. I could see no one. Feel no one.

And it was another one of those dreams where I didn’t look like myself, but i had to admit I was pretty hot with the purple-grey drow skin paint job. And the wings felt like heaven.

Still, that unsettling feeling, though.

watchingme BLOG - 1 (1)

I think I’m paranoid, manipulated…

I really do think I’m paranoid, manipulated probably by my own turncoat thoughts. Because every I turned around there was absolutely nothing behind me.

Strangest thing.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: LAQ Bento Mesh Head, Scarlet
Skin: Lumae, Elvi – Kialaya (Available ON 1 AUGUST at The Mesh Body Addicts Fair!)
Nails: Dark Passions Koffin Nails, Dark Orchid (Available NOW at the Gothic Garage Sale!)
Ears: Eclipse Art Studios, Nepthune
Eyes: Musa, Apatite Eyes
Dress: Pixicat, Ava Dress
Tights: The Little Bat, Lia Stockings (omega applier) (Available NOW at the Gothic Garage Sale!)
Shoes: Cult, Desire Heels
Necklace: Devious Mind, Cassia Forest Necklace
Hair: Sintiklia, Mbali
Wings: Material Squirrel, Thethys Wings

Environment: CYMK Time For the Moon Night, 2
Large Invisible Unicorn: Heartistic, Midnight Unicorn

One Step Forward

Another mystifying dream, in which I seem to be working for some charity? Let me try to remember it in more detail for you.

It’s my first evening on the street. That’s what they call it anyway. I have to stifle a laugh every time my pod leader says it. But no matter how long we “supernatural creatures” (creatures? really? who says that?) are visible to Earth’s dominant population, we still seem to be seen as some bizarre alien presence. Never mind that history just doesn’t reflect any of the things my parents told me.

So that’s why there has to be a MaVoST. And that’s why people like me, who with less effort can “pass” amongst humans, get picked to go out and knock on doors.

Canvass BLOG - 1

I don’t like knocking on doors.

I don’t like knocking on doors. It feels so 20th century. All I need is a perky visor and a big suitcase and I could be a Depression Hoover salesperson. Well. And a penis.

My handler is across the street. She’s waving at me. “Go on, Gwynnie, you can do it,” comes her voice through the magically enhanced earpiece I wear (with convenient panic button just in case I end up talking to any of those people).

Canvass BLOG - 2

I half-turn toward the street.

I half-turn toward the street.

“OK,” I whisper. “OK.”

“Just do it like we practiced.”

“Hi, good evening! I’m Gwynnie Thlessaliel, and I’m a faerie.”

<pause>

“Good, good. Keep going. Rehearsal is good for the soul.”

“Now, I know you probably see a lot of faeries around town. We run your cleaning services, we do a lot of service work, some of us are involved in the arts and entertainment sector, we help create great technology—you know, now that I think about it, we’re actually a lot like you.”

I take a deep breath, then continue. I am taught to wait for some protestation.

“I am part of MaVoST. Have you heard of us? I have some literature here, if you want to read it on your own time. My work number’s on the back, so if you have any questions…. Yes; it stands for Magical Voices Speaking Together.”

<pause>

“Remember, you never enter a house on the first passthrough. Pod tier two will be through in a couple of days.”

“No thank you, Mrs Jones, but it’s a lovely offer. Anyway, read that over, and when you feel like it, give us a call, and we’ll help you get to know more magical and supernatural beings right in your own neighbourhood!”

“That was great, Gwynnie. Just like in practice.”

Canvass BLOG - 3

Now all I have to do is knock.

Now, all I have to do is knock.

And that’s when it always happens.

Redneck with shotgun opens the door. “You get off my porch.”

Creeper in a Satan Lives jersey opens the door. Grabs my wrist.

Nice looking guy in a suit opens the door. “You people always—oh, no, wait; you’re not a person, are you?”

(voice through the door) “No pointy eared freaks! Get out!”

My hand shakes.

“I’m right here, Gwynnie.”

Kid I went to high school with, thirteen years ago, opens the door. “Oh, I remember you. Blew the fucking bell curve in politics and now you’re going door to door for some creepy supernatural club, right? Yeah; that just goes to show that no matter how uppity you are, you will never amount to anything.” Door slams.

Canvass BLOG - 4

I can’t.

“I can’t.”

“Third strike, Gwynnie. You have to do it this time.”

I can’t breathe. I hear a high-pitched noise. Everything turns blue. I gasp for air.

“You’re hyperventilating. Take two deep breaths, turn around, and knock on the door, Gwynnie. I am right here.”

Canvass BLOG - 5

I really, really can’t.

“I really, really can’t.” My voice breaks.

“Right. Let’s go back to the pod office. See if Justin will reassign you, but we really do want all new lobbyists to start with the grassroots work.”

I cross the street. Mariclar puts an arm around my shoulder.

I’m crying.

“Look, he probably will just reassign you. You graduated with a first. I’m sure there’s some office work.”

I’m crying harder.

The curtains across the street part. I can’t make out the face.

“Look, we don’t want to make a scene. Let’s just pop back to the office, OK?” Mariclar takes my hand and leads me around the corner to her car.

It’s too late for Justin to be in the office, so she drives me home.

Then, I am staring at my computer at an email from MaVoST.

Hey, Gwynnie—
Sorry it didn’t work out, but no hard feelings. I’ll talk to Marcus about reassigning you, but for now I’ve got no choice but to suspend you without pay.
—Justin

That’s the third one this year. What is wrong with me?

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista Bento Mesh Head, Lia
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Romina (Available ON 1 AUGUST at The Mesh Body Addicts Fair!)
Nails: Cazimi, BOtM Dan’s Metallics and Glitters (Available NOW at the Cazimi Main Store!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Eyes: Musa, Apatite Eyes
Dress: zOOm, Lilla Dress (Available NOW at the Gothic Garage Sale!)
Tights: Moonlite Cat Creations, Saon Netting Stockings (Available NOW at the Gothic Garage Sale!)
Shoes: Apple May Designs, Thorned Flower Heels
Necklace: Spyralle, Chaos Breaks Out Necklace (Available NOW at the Gothic Garage Sale!)
Hair: Little Bones, Geist (Available NOW at Collabor88!)
Bag: QE Designs, HexenBag

Environment: Paparazzi, Townhouse Backdrop
Rain: anc, Stardustrain

Recreational Realm-Hopping?

Rock Hunting BLOG - 2

The Sea of Ennui

Look. I get tired. I get tired, when I’m at the height of my summer power, of everybody coming to me like, “Oh, Your Majesty, couldn’t you please get to work on the new Book Forest?” Or, “Gosh, Your Majesty, we could use some small houses over here by the park’s edge.” Or, “Your Majesty, not that it’s all that important to us, mind, but could you please finish the pathing between the castle and the village and the Book Forest?

It is wonderful to be needed. It is. But there comes a time, particularly when the days are so hot I would like to scream and immerse myself in water at the same time, which would not end up drowning me but would make the pesky mermaids snicker, when I just want to get the fuck out of town and go hole up in someplace different. The Sea of Ennui is nowhere near as nice as the briny variety.

With that in mind, I informed Bran I was off to look for some rare minerals (it was as good a plan as any) and hopped off to a Realm with different weather.

Rock Hunting BLOG - 4

Well… at least it wasn’t a desert.

“I don’t remember requesting, ‘deserted, mountainous wasteland,'” I said upon nearly crashing into a mossy statue of a book that I judged to be at least four or five hundred years old. “But whatever: at least it’s not hot.”

I judged there was a cave on top of the ridge behind me, and I headed that way. “I was really hoping for a beach,” I muttered to myself.

Rock Hunting BLOG - 3

Will you look at that.

Well, well, well, I thought to myself as I landed near the cave opening. Will you look at that. Possibly the Realm Hopping Powers that Be Powerful or whatever you want to call them were not just pernicious asshats after all. The whole cave system looked to be made out of that granite Bran was falling all over himself to find. Kind of bluish, but whatever floats his boat. I tapped the control button on my bluetooth headset.

Rock Hunting BLOG - 1

You will never guess what I’m sitting on!

“Oh, Bran!” I sang sweetly into the mic, ignoring his grousing both about the signal and the fact that my singing voice doesn’t travel well over whatever compression they build into bluetooth microphones. I did once have this guy I dated who would have looked that up for me and had an answer back before I could type it out. He was German, obviously. “Bran! You’ll never guess what I’m sitting on!”

“Resisting the urge to answer, ‘My face….'” Bran said.

I laughed. “You know that blue granite you’re always going on about?”

“You are shitting me.”

“You keep picking up this vernacular, Bran. We’re going to have to teach you to speak Posh Sidhe all over again before the tourists start coming in.”

“I don’t suppose you would be willing to offer me transport to wherever you are?” He was just going to ignore all my teasing.

“I’ll send a wisp. Not sure how long I’m staying here, but at least it’s not hot.”

“Thank you, Your Majesty.”

“Of course, Bran. You know I’d do just about anything for you,” I said smoothly, then sent a little transport wisp his way.

Now, I only had to decide whether I was going to wait here for him, or if it would be more fun to find somewhere, anywhere, with a beach, or at least a lake of some kind.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista Bento Mesh Head, Lia
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Romina (Available ON 1 AUGUST at The Mesh Body Addicts Fair!)
Nails: Cazimi, BOtM Dan’s Metallics and Glitters (Available NOW at the Cazimi Main Store!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Eyes: Musa, Apatite Eyes
Wings: BareRose, Fairy B Wings
Clothes:
Shirt: Ghee, Slogan T-Shirt, Feminist
Trousers: The Annex, Paisley Pants, Purple Available NOW as a new release and part of the Saturday Sale at The Annex Main Store!)
Shoes: Baiastice, Gemstone Sandals
Necklaces: Violetility, Persephone Necklace;
and The Little Bat, Luna Necklace (Both Available NOW at the Gothic Garage Sale!)
Headpiece: Lode, Summer Garden Wreath, Pink (Available NOW at Shiny Shabby!)
Hair: Exile, Aina (Available NOW at Collabor88!)

Environment: Bearded Guy, Medieval Spring