The Last Dove

After seeing lots of pictures of this sim on Flickr, I added the Last Dove to my list of sims to visit.  As a resident of a very rural town, and a very rural state, in many ways, this sim feels like home.

You can almost smell the wood smoke and feel the dust coating your face as you travel across the bridge into the town proper.  I love how the building on the left has a large board propping up the signage/facade of the building – like you’re walking onto the set of an old spaghetti western.

I think this house/shack is one I pass on my way to work every day – including the chickens in the road I have to dodge.  -.-

We don’t have longhorns where I live, but we do have plenty of cows and bulls.  A long ago piece of advice I received:  If you find yourself in a field with a cow or a bull, and you don’t know the difference – run.  I don’t know if it’s true or not, but thankfully I’ve never had to worry about it.

There’s a lot to see at the Last Dove, so hit that tp button and go see for yourself.

VUK and Author’s Point

This fall, I made a decision that I would spend more time in SL.  I wanted to explore, practice my photography, and just generally have fun.  However, given my almost year-long hiatus from SL, I’m finding it hard to work the time for it back into my life.

Once I wasn’t spending time daily in SL, that time of course got filled up with other things – RL things.  And it’s been difficult to carve out that time in SL again, much as I want to, because things in RL take precedence.

Once school started back up, I thought I would have more free time, but I’m discovering I have less.  I haven’t taken on any extra commitments, so I’m hard-pressed to explain why my free time is suddenly at such a premium.

In any case, I do want to spend more time in SL, so I’m going to have to figure out how to do that.  I did manage to spend a little time exploring last week, visiting some sims that I discovered via Flickr.

It’s funny how some sims make me want to take a photo of everything, and other sims I find myself searching for something to take a photo of.  Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

So although I didn’t get a lot of photographs of some sims, they are still worth visiting.  VUK was one such sim – I did take some photos, but I’m still experimenting with my photography and I ended up with only one photo I felt was worth sharing.

I loved the windlight on this sim – grey and hazy, but it fit the landscape very well.

I also spent some time exploring Author’s Point, but I was rushed and I only took one photo.  When I came back to look at them for editing – ugh.  I was rushing and it clearly showed.  However, the sim is definitely still worth exploring, so head on over and check it out for yourself.

New Black Dragon Viewer Update

Image Source: xelerus.de

This was brought to my attention by a post in the Visionaire group from WrenNoir Cerise.  There has been an update to the Black Dragon viewer.

I’ve used the Black Dragon viewer before and really liked it for taking photos.  However, I haven’t used it in ages – mostly because I haven’t really been in SL much in ages.

But I will definitely be downloading it and trying it out.

The new update apparently lets you move any/all of the individual bones that make up your avatar.  So you can pose yourself exactly how you want.

WrenNoir included a link to a video in her notice, which I’ve embedded below.  If you can’t see the video, click here for the link.

The music was a tad annoying, so I muted it.  The first part of the video shows the editing of the avatar pose in Black Dragon.  The last half is photo editing in Photoshop, so you can skip that if you’ve no interest in that part.

I can’t wait to dig in and start experimenting.  Thanks to Wren for the heads up!

Exploring Unconditional

Time is the one thing I always wish I had more of.  There never seems to be enough time in my day to accomplish all the things I want to get done.

I suppose I should be grateful that I have things I want to do on my list, rather than it being full of things I have to do.

There – that’s me, practicing gratitude.  😛

I did manage to carve out some time to head in to SL for some exploring.  I visited several places, but I always have more on my list.

One of the places I visited was Unconditional.

The sim is gorgeous and full of little hidden areas. I’ve seen pictures from it all over Flickr, so clearly lots of people find it as pretty as I did.

In some places, it reminded of home – I’d see this sort of thing traveling around the roads where I live. 

I think this is one of my favorite pictures of all those I’ve taken.

Of course, there are no beaches where I live, so I always find those areas fun to explore, since I can’t do that in real life.

Whatever you’re looking for, you’re sure to find it in SL.  But be sure to stop by and give Unconditional a visit.  You won’t regret it.

Copycats – Flattering or Annoying?

I haven’t posted anything to Flickr in a few weeks, but while I’ve been neglecting my own stream, I have been paying more attention to others.

What I’ve noticed is some people who seem to be copying the styles of other popular SL Flickr photographers.  Not that that is necessarily bad, or that they are doing it to cause problems for the other photographer.

I guess I find myself taken aback because when I see a photo, I think it’s by the photographer I associate with that style, and then realize it isn’t.  Doesn’t mean the photo is bad, just that it feels – wrong?

I don’t want to name names or point fingers, because again, I don’t know that there is any malicious intent behind it.  Maybe they just really like a particular photogs style and want to try and emulate it.

But I have to wonder if those photogs are flattered or frustrated by the copycats.  I know in at least one instance, the original photog felt frustrated because the copycat was not only copying the style but the content of the photo.  Which, again, could be a way to build your skills, but certainly comes across as disingenuous.

Have you had anyone copy your photos?  How did you feel about it?

Second question: What is with all the photos that appear to be taken portrait, but then turned to landscape when posted to Flickr?  I end up tilting my head trying to make sense of the images.  Is there a memo I missed somewhere that said this is the new ‘thing’ in photography?

Erebos Harbor

With limited time in SL this week, I turned to the Photogenic, Rezzable Sims list from Blogger & Vlogger Network (BVN).  I found Erebos Harbor on the list and it looked intriguing, so I headed on over.

The sim has a lot of paths with twists and turns, so you can find lots of hidden places, like this stunning waterfall.

The harbor where you arrive is gorgeous, with boats bobbing the water behind you as you land.

Make sure you spend some time exploring – the scenery is well worth it!

Be Happy

I’m slowly getting back into SL and taking photos. I’m also slowly getting back into Photoshop and editing photos.  Sometimes, though, you get lucky.

Last week I was wandering around Yorkshire, a sim I have visited before.  Changes have been made, of course, so I went back to see what it was like now.

It’s still beautiful, though in a different way than previously.  Before, it was bleak and dark (but not in a depressing way).  Now it’s more light and sun and relaxation.

I do edit my photos, but I play around a lot with windlights and focal lengths and effects in-world as well.  And sometimes, I manage to find a combination that works.

I found this little scene in Yorkshire and was immediately enthralled.  I’m not sure why, because I’m not a pickup truck or outdoorsy girl.  But it spoke to me in some way, so I stopped to take some photos.

And I got lucky.

I’m thrilled with the way this photo came out.  So happy, in fact, that it is now my PC wallpaper.  I don’t care if any one else likes it – this photo makes me happy.  🙂