Second Life: My New Avatar
So, as part of trying to start getting Original Pursuits Society off the ground (what is that you ask? Visit here for more information. This site is actually part of the OPS network.) we set up a new headquarters in Second Life (SL Link). At the same time my avatar, that is the 3D model that represents you in the virtual world, needed an upgrade. Maus, the other cofounder, decided he’d pitch in a bit and help me ’cause I told him how his avatar always looks so good. Well, he didn’t disappoint!
First he hit the marketplace to search for a suitable avatar. Being a furry avatar, that is an anthropomorphic animal, programming and design of the avatar is a definite must. All my avatars I had in my in-game inventory were outdated. At least, I thought they were outdated. Here’s a pic of the best one I had, a white wolf thing:
And here’s a small close-up gallery:
I do have to say though, the eyes are beautiful. They did great work on the eyes.
I don’t mean to be mean in any way to the makers of this avatar, it’s a perfectly good avatar… but to me the head looks kind of old school. For people who use/sell/wear this avatar if it works for you that’s great! But… it’s not really working for me… plus, I’m not really an arctic wolf so there’s that. I’m a wunk! Well, there really aren’t any half-wolf / half-skunk specific avatars out there, though I do suppose I could mix and match. So I decided I’d have to lean one way or another when it comes to which one my avatar was going to be. I decided skunks are more interesting, and Maus found me an “Espresso Skunk” avatar that’s pretty cute called “Moufette”. It doesn’t have a flexi-tail (a tail that swishes and moves around on its own behind the avatar) but Maus told me that those were difficult to get right for skunks. It DOES have an adjustable tail though and I can set it in different positions including straight up behind me, which I like quite a bit. It also comes with a nice HUD, that’s a heads up display on the screen above the 3D content, where you can adjust the mouth, the eyebrows, the eye color and other eye details, and the tail. I kinda wish I could also adjust the hair, but that’s not in the HUD (please make it a feature guys?)
The “Espresso Skunk” “Moufette” avatar is from Curious Avatars and you can find out more by looking them up on Second Life and in the marketplace. I tried to find a store for them in world, but all I found was a strange hangout, a strange club, and a sandbox:
Once I had a body, it was time to clothe me (seeing as how I was basically naked). I wanted something professional, snappy looking, so Maus first took me to some place that had like business suits, trenchcoats, leather jackets, that kind of thing. It… wasn’t quite what I was looking for. I unfortunately don’t have any photos of our shopping exploits when we were doing them so you could get a good idea of what I’m talking about, but I promise in future Second Life updates I’ll have a bit more of a photographic journey. We wandered around for a little while when Maus decided we were going to abandon the whole “super professional business look” and go for something a little more peppy and modern.
That’s when we stumbled, kind of, into the AvaBoy and AvaGirl fashion store. You can find them on the marketplace, and there’s also a in-game store. I took a pic of the outside, and of the particular item I bought (since it doesn’t seem to show up in the store search). It’s called a Mason, and I got the Mason “fatback.”
Finally it was getting about to the time to accessorize this look. I wanted shoes, cause all I have is feet at the moment, which are nice, but I thought boots or something would look better. Maus didn’t really want to spend the Lindens on those though, so I’ll get them next time. But he did say my mug needed a bit of something to touch it up… so we trotted off to Steirnwerk (marketplace) and in-game. I got some really cool glasses, I took a pic of them as in the shop. I believe they’re called “Etienne”. They’re quite elegant, and come up with some functionality, including I believe the abilityy to “put them up”. I had to place them on my head, but they also come with a shrinker/enlarger feature that I found very handy.
As a kick, I spotted this Steampunk Watch that I thought was neat. However, I really should’ve demo-ed it before I bought it (the one product I didn’t). I thought it was going to lay flat and the face would look like what it looks like in the book. No, it’s a whole tank of steam and the watch ‘front’ is the front of the tank that rests on your wrist. I’m not sure about this accessory yet, but it seems to slowly be growing on me. It’s just kind of clunky. But it does have a HUD for immersion!
The last piece of the puzzle was my animation override. I didn’t want anything super acrobat-y and over the top. I don’t need to move around a lot, so I wanted something subdued. I didn’t really like the old AO (animation override), which made me wander around sometimes, so we searched for a new one. Subtle was the key. Well, Maus was able to find it (I’m not really sure how he found it as when I backtracked all I could track down was a link to a blog.) But we got a subdued very nice and simple AO that I like quite a bit. I don’t have a video of it (as would be required), but I took a BUNCH of pictures in different poses that it generated. That makes up the last gallery, all the shots I’ve gathered of me trying to get a good icon:
I was able to come up with a few good pictures though. I took a picture up where I took the picture of the wolf avatar above, and it came out a lot better. These two pictures are my favorite:
My friend Ferret actually liked this one quite a bit too, but he felt there could be a little graphical trickery that would add to the effect. And he used GIMP to come up with this icon based on the above picture:
I liked that better than the icon I briefly had that I was able to procure from the program. And now, it’s on my site! Tada!
Anyways, I’m hoping this avatar gives off a more professional, modern, studious look. I know I may be a wunk, but I gotta be taken seriously a little bit if this OPS thing is gonna make it off the ground! See you in Second Life!