Inspired By: Hel

To celebrate my favorite holiday, Halloween, I decided to create an avatar loosely based on the Norse goddess Hel. Those of you familiar with Hel know she’s described as being “part black and part white.” The video game Smite takes this literally by splitting Hel into two personalities and entities. I’ve based this look on that split image.

Split Hair

The hair is TRUTH‘s Ophelia. The hair itself is split colored, these images aren’t edited for that effect. You can choose any color in the HUD for either side. I highly recommend snagging the fatpack for this hair if you don’t usually. It gives you so many more options since you can wear two colors! The styling HUD also allows for the hair to sit differently as well. Ophelia is available at Salem until October 31.

Dual Skins

Two skins are featured here, both by 7 Deadly s{K}ins. The darker skin is Pepper in Mud and the lighter is Key in Dew. Both are designed for LAQ bento heads and come in Omega appliers. Pepper is currently available as part of the Trick or Treat hunt as well as for direct purchase at the 7DS store. Key was available as part of The Black Fair this month.

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Fantasy Avatar: The Gryphon

Today’s Fantasy Avatar almost feels like cheating! Kinzart Kreetures sells a variety of furry avatars that look lovely right out of the box. The gryphon in this post was released a few years ago, before bento, and is seen exactly how she looks the first time you put her on.

Prismatic Gryphon

The Gryphon comes in various colors ranging from realistic to playful. Shown here is the Prismatic version, one of the more vibrant selections. The Kinzart Vendor will allow you to preview all available colors so you can be confident before purchasing.

What’s In The Box?

You’ll find a full list of content in the image at the bottom of this section.

The left two columns show the items exactly as they are when you initially unpack the avatar (as well as what I’m wearing for this post in bold). It includes avatar components for males and females, an informational notecard, an update checker, and more.

The right column shows the unpacked “Extras” box. This box gives you various bodyparts so you can switch out beaks, tails, jaws, crests, legs, and ears. You can even make your gryphon into a hippogriff!

My favorite part of the Extras box is how diverse the items are. You can have lion ears, a horse tail, and a parrot’s beak. You can have a toucan jaw, hawk crest, and the lion feet. There are so many ways to make this avatar your own quickly and easily.

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Mesh Crash Course: Troubleshooting Issues

Need more mesh help or info? Check out our full Mesh Crash Course.

Sometimes things just don’t go as expected when using mesh heads and bodies in Second Life. Here are some of the most common issues:

  1. Skin, makeup or tattoos don’t apply
  2. Skin, makeup or tattoos appear distorted
  3. Eyelashes are clumpy
  4. Skin, makeup, or tattoos are shiny
  5. Makeup or tattoos are faded
  6. Old body parts show through the new mesh body parts
  7. And many, many more…

While all of these things can be very frustrating, thankfully they are usually an easy fix!

Appliers

Some of the most common problems come from trying to use appliers. If you’re not familiar with them make sure to check out our in depth post on how appliers work.

If you’re finding that skin, makeup, or tattoos aren’t showing up at all it can be a few different things. First you’ll want to make sure you’re using the correct appliers. A Catwa applier, for example, won’t apply to a Lelutka head. If you’re using Omega appliers (the “universal” applier) make sure you also have your Omega System Relay Kits on. You may have to click the relays to activate them. For more information on ensuring you have the right applier and how to use appliers please check out Appliers: How Do They Work?

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Fantasy Avatar: The Broken Doll

You’ve seen many fantasy avatars by now, from vampires and demons to elves and nekos. Today I bring you something a little different: a creepy broken doll.

Get The Broken Doll Look

Most of this look can be achieved with products you may already have. The main part that makes the doll is the tattoo layer discussed in the ~SongBird~ section below. Everything else is just added bonus! Any skin will work, though I love the super pale skin since it gives her that extra creepy, fragile vibe. If you’re using a mesh body parts you can utilize the shiny options to really make the glass doll effect pop.

Aii The Ugly & Beautiful

The porcelain skin Astral Allure is a wonderful base for a doll. The skin itself is a pure, simple look that comes with various customization options. Please note that Astral Allure is simply the skin used, the cracks and doll joints are actually a separate product.

The HUD below shows all but the nipple color options that Astral Allure comes with. It’s really versatile and great for fantasy styles.

Click for full view

By setting the shiny option on the body and head to max I was able to give the doll a great polished glass look. While the effect is slightly visible in the photos it’s really noticeable when moving through a well lit area.

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How To Look Like A Million Bucks On A Budget

Second Life and some of its many avatars may be free, however a large portion of us invest money into the game. Avatar customization can turn into a very expensive hobby if you have the desire and the funds. That said, you don’t have to be rich to look awesome. If you want to spend some money on your avatar but need to stick to a budget you can still look great.

What To Spend On

The important thing to remember is that your avatar is yours and what’s important to others may not be important to you. Maybe you don’t care about cool clothing but you want a high quality mesh body. Perhaps you love the system body and want to invest in quality clothing and hair. It’s entirely up to you. Here are some things worth investing in when funds are limited.

The Basics: Body, Skin, Hair, Etc.

A high quality base is a great starting point. If you have some of the more popular mesh body parts you can find low cost and even free clothing, appliers, and accessories quite easily. What you should purchase is entirely up to your preferences and budget. This section lists some of the most popular brands alongside which genders they support so you have a place to start. This is by no means a complete list, it just includes the most popular brands to consider.

Mesh Body Parts

If you’ll only be purchasing high quality body parts (and looking for deals on skins and appliers) I recommend sticking with the more common mesh body options. Their popularity makes it very easy to find low cost and free products to use with them. I highly encourage visiting Mesh Body Addicts to research any parts you may be interested in and demo all your parts together before purchasing to ensure they give you the look you want. 

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Mesh Crash Course: Selecting A Head

Need more mesh help or info? Check out our full Mesh Crash Course.

Mesh heads are extremely popular due to their smooth, seamless look in comparison to system heads. Whether you’re looking for your first mesh head or your fifth there are a few basics that can help ensure you pick the perfect one for you.

Main Considerations

Of course what is right for others may not be right for you. It always comes down to your own needs and preferences. There are a few things to consider when demoing (yes, you should be using demos) and narrowing down the options for your personal taste.

Bento vs Static?

One of your biggest choices is if you’d like a bento or static head. I won’t get in too deep as we’ve already covered this, however it’s still important to touch on. The main difference between bento and static heads is the shape customization. Bento heads respond to the shape sliders so you can get various looks with the same head. Static heads don’t respond to the sliders and always have the same shape even if you alter sliders.

Alpha Options

Many people like to use different eyes, ears, or teeth instead of the standards that may come with a purchase. If you’re one of those people (or may be in the future) you’ll want to ensure your head will allow for it. If the head comes with those components you’ll want to make sure they are either equipped separately or can be hidden. Otherwise you will likely run into clipping issues and a weird mix of double features.

If you’re not sure why anyone would want to use something aside from the standards take a peek at this list. I’d hate for you to pick a head that didn’t let you hide ears than decide you wanted to be an elf in a few weeks!

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Fantasy Avatar: The Glaistig

Recent dark and fantasy events such as We Love RP, Memento.Mori, and The Dark Style Fair 4 have been grabbing the attention of alternative avatars all through Second Life. In celebration I designed an avatar loosely based on a mythical being from Scottish folklore. The Glaistig is represented in many different ways, but almost all of them share the theme of a woman/goat hybrid. With that in mind I created the creature for this post.

 

7 Deadly s{K}ins

The skin used for the Glaistig is Nove by 7 Deadly s{K}ins. Nove is found at The Dark Style Fair 4 (aka TDSF4), an event celebrating all things dark. She comes in two packs, both of which include omega appliers for the face and the body in five skin tones. The first package includes the fair tones Snow (shown here), Cotton Candy, Apricot, Sand, and Caramel. The second  includes the darker tones Walnut, Chestnut, Taupe, Cashew, and Pineapple. Each pack is on sale for L$699 at the fair.

To find 7 Deadly s{K}ins at TDSF4 simply port in, head West until you reach the pathway, then follow the pathway South. You’ll find 7DS in the last booth on the right.

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Fantasy Avatar: Disturbingly Beautiful (Moth Woman)

I created today’s avatar in celebration of the Fantasy Faire. Second Life has hundreds, if not thousands, of events but a few things make the Fantasy Faire stand out. First, it’s massive. You’ll find more than 200 designers spanning over a dozen themed sims. Don’t be intimidated though, there’s a handy shopping guide to help you out. Second, it’s extremely in depth. This isn’t just a sale, this is a full fledged Faire. There are live events going on throughout the entire duration of the Faire.  Third, and most importantly, the Faire is participating in Relay For Life. As of this post, Second Life has raised over L$4,000,000 (nearly $16,000 USD) for the American Cancer Society. You can see up to date totals at Relay for Second Life.

This is a very important cause for me as my mom beat cancer last year.

7 Deadly s{K}ins

The base for this disturbing yet beautiful moth woman is the skin Opal from 7 Deadly s{K}ins. Opal is a paper white skin, however there are variations for purchase. Each eyebrow color comes in an Omega applier pack with three skin variants including both the face and body. You can choose from pink, blue, white (seen here), grey, or no eyebrows for $L499 each. The fatpack includes all 5 colors as well as black eyebrows for L$1,996.

The Opal shape is also on sale for $L299. The shape is designed for Catwa’s Catya head and Maitreya’s Lara body. The main images in this post don’t use the Opal shape, however you can see it on the promo image below.

 

Another huge perk of such a pale skin is the tint factor. If you use body parts that have tint options for the skin layer you can tint this white to any available color. It’s wonderful for fantasy avatars of all hues!

Opal is available at the San Mora Fantasy Faire sim.

 

 

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Free Dove Friday: March 31, 2017

Since discovering The Free Dove, I’ve decided to showcase one look a week with items from the store. Welcome to the eighth installment of Free Dove Friday! Make sure to check the bottom of the post for all the awesome pics.

This week showcases products by Sn@tch, Avi-Glam, and Ishara Shop.

Fast Facts On The Brands

  1. Sn@tch
    • Hair, clothes, accessories, shoes, you name it they have it.
    • Caters mostly to women.
    • Marketplace has nearly 2,000 items (including selections for men).
  2. Avi-Glam
    • Clothes, skins, eyes, and complete avatars.
    • Products for men and women.
    • Marketplace has over 600 items!
  3. Ishara Shop
    • Clothing and accessories
    • Serves both men and women
    • Marketplace  has over 2,000 items.

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Fantasy Avatar & Charity: For Dryads & Ember

While today is another fantasy avatar post, it’s actually doubling as a charity event awareness post. Read on for some super fun Dryad photos, information about the products used, and to learn how you can help a Second Life user in need.

Meet Elicio Ember

Elicio Ember has been playing Second Life since 2008. His location Cerridwen’s Cauldron has both beautifully scenic areas as well as a wonderful shopping selection. Last month tragedy struck his family causing him to put Second Life on hold, including pulling out of the Fantasy Faire. Below I have included excerpts from Elicio Ember’s Facebook. Please feel free to read his entire post and the update for more in depth information.

My father had a stroke yesterday…There is no clear prognosis yet but things are serious and some kind of neural damage is confirmed.

Public health security in Mexico is insufficient and often of very low quality. My father has no health protection whatsover. Its a russian rullete. People can be treated well and recover. People die waiting to be treated (or) die by malpractice. So we took him to a private hospital before risking a long wait.

I have 5 sisters, but not even between all of us we will be able to pay for the hospital charges without severly straining all our economies, not even considering all the expenses of rehab and care that will follow if…well. If he makes it. Which might be actually more terryifing than if he does not as its yet uncertain what the rehab possibilites are.

Elicio Ember

 

Continue reading to learn how to help Elicio and make your own Dryad

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