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JULY 2009



STAFF Publisher Rohal Schnyder Executive Publisher Leeza Catteneo Editor in Chief Ofelia Laval Copy Editor Damon Dollinger Advertising & Marketing Leeza Catteneo Art Director Leeza Catteneo Stylists Ana Lutetia Cayce Newell Keeley Huet Stacie Pryor Tomoyo Breitman Fashion Spread Photographer Zoe Demar Contributors Aldwyn Zanzibar Express Zenovka Keeley Huet Kee Llewellyn Paypabak Writer Salvatore Otoro


Editorial Office Concetta (194/172/22) Contacts All the published material has been provided by the mentioned brands. Therefore, ROLE Magazine cannot be responsible for copyright issues and assumes no responsibility for inaccurate content or changes in the products or prices displayed. Copyright by ROLE Magazine. Reproduction or use of the content in whole or in part without the written permission of the editor is strictly prohibited.

EDITOR’S NOTE Wow, what a month! ROLE Magazine was honored to have been chosen to create an exhibit for the SL6B Celebration! The futuristic theme fit well with our philosophy to encourage you, residents of our virtual community, to contribute to our world. Our exhibit included a live performance by the acclaimed RL/SL musician Winston Ackland. Winston, a ROLE Magazine alumnus, was warmly welcomed by a large and enthusiastic crowd of SL6B revelers. As July and the SL6B extravaganza is now at an end we are pleased to announce the winner of our ROLE Magazine: SL6B Photo Contest on page 8. We are pleased to announce the addition of Salvatore Otoro to our team! Salvatore will explore virtual role playing sims throughout SL for our new monthly feature. Be sure to check out his first feature article for our publication on The City of Lost Angels. Our fashion spreads are exceptionally inspired this month and were realized by our staff stylists Keeley Huet, Felicity Blumenthal and fashion photographer Zoe Demar. Staff stylist Ana Lutetia offers men some terrific fashion suggestions in Masculino. Male fashion bloggers Gahum Riptide and Kith DeCuir create an exclusive look for us. Staff stylists Cayce Newell and Tomoyo Breitman are back with more Mix & Match wardrobe ideas and Hot Finds – featuring tasty treats from the Shoes Buffet. Ever consider trying your hand at creating in-world poses? Aldwyn Zanzibar compares three popular animation tools and helps get you started in his Gadgets feature. Keeley Huet explores the best prefabs on the grid. Paypabak Writer takes us along for the ride as she experiences the wonders of the sixteen sim fantasy community known as the Great Alliance. Rounding out this July edition of ROLE Magazine, Kee Llewellyn offers her opinions in our on-going discussion of art and just how, exactly, does one define it? As always, the team at ROLE Magazine thanks you for your support and feedback. We want to know how you plan to contribute to the SL community as we move forward. Please send your comments or feature suggestions to us at Kind regards,


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As part of our exhibit at the SL6B Celebration, ROLE Magazine held a photo contest in which participants were to pose at one of the various pose stations in our exhibit in the outfit of their choice. The goal of the exhibit was to encourage members of our virtual community to realize our future is in our hands and it is up to us to steer the virtual ship. We are pleased to announce the Grand Prize winner is Anna Zwiers! As part of her win her photograph is published here for all to see! Our Second Place winning submission is awarded to naz Quan. Congratulations, ladies! Anna’s prize package includes: * ROLE Optic high-quality sculpted sunglasses (8 pairs selected by Anna - 4 of which will go to a friend of Anna’s choice) * U-FO’s (Unidentified Fun Objects by Romano Frascati) Abductor flying saucer (plus 1 for a friend of Anna’s choice) naz’s prize package includes: * ROLE Optic high-quality sculpted sunglasses (4 pairs selected by naz)

naz Quan 8

Anna Zwiers




Tired of reading about cyberpunk palaces of angst? Space opera starting to sound the same? Okay, this month, we’re exploring a land of dragons and mages, of fairy queens and noble councils: The Great Alliance! The title of this article is in Drow, the language of Dark Elves, and anyone with a Drow Translatascan would be able to understand that it says “Greetings everyone!” These translators can be found for free in the realms of the Alliance, a remarkable collection of sims united in original fantasy roleplaying. By Paypabak Writer

My dear friend Archangel Singer introduced me to her roleplaying home and my jaw dropped at the scale of the roleplaying opportunities for more than 800 residents of SL! Spanning nearly 16 sims, the Alliance is quite amazing. I can only report on and provide photos of the five islands of the Elven realm of Sylvhara with this article, but urge you to investigate the other worlds connected with this mature RPG environment where Elves, Fae, Drow, Human, Dragons, Gnomes, Treants, and other races carve out their lives. In the words of Lord Malikith Virtanen: “This world is a harbinger of emotions and lives far beyond what we can see with mere pixels.”

tasy RP, tinged with Steampunk themes if the Selene airship I saw is any indication; The Last White Knights realm for fantasy RP; Salvation, also for fantasy RP; and Sylvhara, of course, five sims of Elven-based RP. But we’re not done! Sims have been set up for what Angel advises me are the “conflict groups” (I guess they don’t think of themselves as the Bad Guys!) opposing the Alliance. They are called as a whole, the Shadow Crusade, Enemies of the Alliance RP group and consist of: the Sisters of Neval; Aryador, which is contiguous with Sylvhara in terms of location; Lunema; and the Undead Fighters, a vampire group and home to H&S Weapons & other stores serving the Shadow Crusade. (OK, technically, they call themselves the Shadow Legion but because the name wasn’t available as an SL Group, they are the Shadow Crusade.) It should be obvious by now that not all of the islands making up the Alliance are contiguous, with the largest clusters being Sylvhara, Fayandria, and Lumidor. They all carry out separate RP storylines within their boundaries as well as adhere to an overarching storyline for all realms, good and evil.

Here’s a very brief summary of what you can find in this enormous United States of Fantasy realm: two Drow sims of Zenith, where among many enchantments is a three-level mall filled with armor, appropriate clothing and jewelry, avatars, boots, and more; Lumindor/Lomendor, comprised of 4 sims dedicated to Fantasy roleplay and represented on the Council of the Alliance; Durohn where the Silver Legion, which serves the Alliance, makes its home; Asgard, a Vikingbased fantasy sim; Vindarkis, hosting medievalthemed RP; Wings of Eagles, Medieval RP; Wayrest, an outpost of the Silver Legion; Er Ooma, two sims for Elven RP; Fayandria, five sims dedicated to fantasy RP and “home of dragons;” Imrath Tir, two sims for fan-

Within these groups is The Academy- Power of the Light, with schools of White, Black, and Red Robes, the latter being a sect of mages and clerics who are neutral: aiding and healing both sides after battles. 13

(Angel is a member and teacher in the Academy of the Red Robes). These academies train in the practical use of the SpellFire (SF) combat system, which is freely available to all visitors and players. The SF system, designed by Aaron Cerveau, has been deemed the best system for handling spellcasting and magic in Second Life. He is involved in the Alliance, which provides a vast testing ground for improvements to the system. Spinning off from this system, of course, is a multitude of wondrous magic-based weapons and armor, made available by a wide variety of merchants who operate stores on Alliance sims.

ative processes that successful RP requires. My first visit to Sylvhara was astounding: castles, mountains, gorgeous trees and magnificent waterfalls while overhead, dragons and flying mages battled in a tournament! The dragons were large avatars that have incredibly expressive movement, pretty much controlled by same means you control your avatar but with help via HUD. Despite the lush detailed setting, there were at least a dozen participants flying about blasting each other fairly smoothly. The dragons appeared in various sizes. Archangel Singer has several dragon avatars from which to choose, but most often uses a purple dragon that is about eye to eye with me when she stands on her hind legs. Other dragons are quite large, with legs the size of my avatar, which fly majestically above the sim.

A measure of just how serious and inspired these players are by working out an original fantasy realm, consider that The Sylvan Legends by Darius Mesmer runs nearly 80 pages when transferred from notecard to Word document! And that is only for one realm among the near dozen that make up the Alliance, most of which also have elaborate histories. The roleplay is organic as well as organized, and what I mean by that is that the serious roleplayers among the 800 live their parts very likely having no other life in SL but being their character. From that “life” springs what we call “organic” RP. This can take the shape of weekly lessons in spellcasting at the academies which are likely paralleled by classes in weapons and fighting. Clubs and taverns provide outlets for socializing IC and OOC. On one forest sim, the Bard Circle has storytelling, poetry and song sharing on a weekly basis. Rangers take part in quests, searching for scrolls that may lead to treasure or other adventures. Merchants may also have some role in stories—I cannot be sure but it’s always possible.

On the ground, a gallery of colorful characters joked among themselves, awarding oohs and aahs to the various participants. The good-natured camaraderie was evident, which to me means these people are living very comfortably in their roles and with each other. My hosts for my tours of the sim were Queen Comet Quijote, Elven queen of Sylvhara, and Lord Malikith Virtanen, the leader of the Great Alliance. When we visited the central plaza of the capitol city of Sylvhara, I saw a city fit for the movers and shakers of Sylvhara who lived among these beautiful palaces. Per Queen Comet: “ambassador, Vienna Beaumont is in the white building at the back left, the Dragon Regent, Malakyte Thorne lives in the front right white building, and Bard, Surazeus Thor lives in the tower toward the back. There is the Mage Hall, there is Elven Hall …” my guides recounted as we walked around the lovely plaza.

Organized RP takes shape in at least two ways: the playing out of the history of each separate realm as organized by leaders within each sim and in the larger story arcs involving all the realms. This story arc is coordinated by each realm leader via a council that meets monthly to guide how they interweave their organic RP together into a grand story. The Alliance formed and has stayed intact since November 11, 2007. According to Queen Comet Quixote, the various people who rule these realms get along remarkably well in order for that to be true, and credits Lord Milikith Virtanen with the diplomatic moxie to make it happen. In most of these realms, the owners pay tier simply out of love for the joy of the RP and the cre-

Upon visiting the Bard Circle of Sylvhara Anar, I was soon lost in the foliage of massive trees and a great forest. Caves are cunningly hidden in the gentle roll of green hills. In one cave, we discovered mushroom seats and a scroll that was left as part of the Ranger quest. Farther on down the path we found the Tavern and the Knights Hall. Sylvhara Isil had as its center the Sylvan Temple of the Moon. In the distance, you can hear the crashing of the sea and smell the salt in the rarefied air. This magnificent tribute to Greek columns is where Knight14

ings and blessings are held. Changes of the seasons are celebrated and it is a fit place for any kind of large gathering of the Elven people of Queen Comet. (Psst, there’s also a swank nightclub below it for letting down one’s hair out of character!) To the south is Fae Glen, more temple-like structures on small islands. There is a tree castle that belongs to the queen as well.

to acting out one’s role, be it small or large. Add to this the incredible amount of merchandise available for this kind of roleplay, from projectile and melee weapons to myriad forms of armor, training devices, and then the fabulous clothes from gowns to silks, slippers to barb-encrusted boots, and you have a D&D roleplayer’s idea of Pixel Heaven! With such a huge canvas, one can merely live out a fantasy of being a Drow or Faery, Dragon or powerful magician, merchant or soldier, be content and make a mark in the community of a single realm. That alone can be quite fulfilling in Second Life but add to that the arc of greater stories tying together so many realms and you become part of a larger-than-life epic.

On Sylvhara Tari, we came to the gateway for the Council Chambers, where the various leaders of the realms of the Great Alliance meet to discuss matters of state (i.e., roleplay, rules, mercantile business, meters, combat, etc.). At each corner of the great room, tall Egyptian-styled statues stand watch over a large square table where these leaders are assigned seats. This hardly touches the surface of the sights to be taken in on these four of the five islands of Sylvhara, of the dozen realms, and sixteen sims that make up the Great Alliance.

Sylvhara Elen Sylvhara Elen (120/168/35)

It cannot be emphasized enough how these gloriously detailed settings create an atmosphere conducive



Shoes were created for the sole purpose of protecting our feet. In the Second Life® metaverse, shoes are little more than decoration - selected to complete and compliment the clothes we wear. Ever since the introduction of prim shoes in 2007, designers have been working tirelessly, pushing the borders of the grid to bring us the wonderful selections of shoes available today. It would be hard to name every store and designer that has accomplished sheer wonders in the art of shoe design so instead we chose 4 emerging stores to showcase in this month’s “shoe buffet special!” Styled and Written by Cayce Newell and Tomoyo Breitman

Hair: Maitreya Piper - Chocolate Skin: :GP: Sundust [Dark] April-Rainbow 2 Overalls: (Kunglers) Jordyn - Brown Tank: MIEL AM TULIP TANK - CHAMPAGNE Necklaces: ::: B@R ::: Chibi Denim Necklace & .+*AA*+.Layered flower necklace *black (modded) Hat: ::SUGARCUBE - straw floral hat Lashes: Silhouette Lashes: DANGEROUS Pose: Striking Poses – Gisele Bundchen 1

Shoes: 50 flats-patent rose- Noir 50 flats-jeweled flats - Ice 50 Flats-Scale - Orange/Bronze 50 Flats - Strawberry


50 Flats Ding Fotherington, the mastermind behind the store 50 Flats has certainly been busy. Ever since the opening of her shop in February 2009, Ding has been creating cheap and adorable footwear that fills the need for flats in our clothing inventory. 50 Flats’ Main Store Collins (106/209/28)


R2 Every time we visit Rey2 Aya’s shop we stare at the vendors like kids in front of a candy store: R2 shoes come in many shades of colors and are offered at an incredibly cheap price. You will want to buy them all!

R2’s Main Store Japan Resort C2 (63/213/22) Blog

Skin: Ashley in smoky1 by Redgrave Hair: Bailey in cocoa brown by Aoharu Dress: Romantic Soliloquy by Paper Couture Pose: Pretzel*Poses - Flying on Ice 7

Shoes: Akamai in black by R2 Akamai in pink by R2 Kahakai in gold by R2 Mahealani in pink & Purple by R2 Malama in silver by R2 Mahie in orange by R2 24

Kookie Located in the midst of the infamous Cupcakes shopping district, Kookie’s designs are definitely as yummy as a cookie. With a huge range of original and stylish shoes, Kookie’s is a a great place to visit whether you are shopping for a dance or for a mountain climbing trip!

Kookie’s Main Store Cupcake (156/55/36) Blog

Hair: .:[ Tiny Bird ]:. Bea - Brownie Skin: :GP: Sundust [Light] April-Pink Lady 2 Shirt: Kyccie - FD-07 -Candy- *white peach* Shirt Skirt: ::: B@R ::: Chibi Denim Skirt Jacket: *Alg.* Croco Leather Jacket Necklace: Shampoooo Clock Necklace ! Nails: [ Love Soul ] Prim nails*Cherry blossom* Glasses: [twee] Glasses 14 Shoes: *Kookie* Chic heels - Creamy Latte

Shoes: *Kookie * Unique birdie Kat platforms *Kookie * Natasha - Tartan *Kookie * Ella Petite flats Noir

Bag: [LB] - Croco Cabas/White Book: Rainy Day Scribbles book Chair & Pose: [LA] Modern Puff - White 25

Hair: Breeze in powder by !lamb Skin: Jennifer in smoky1 by Redgrave Dress: Drapery dress in green by Aoharu Sandals: Long python gladiator in silver white by Aoharu Hair: Vanessa in brown by Beauty Avatar Skin: Belina *Cinna: Berry-1a by Bebae Outfit: Tailored jacket in black by Aoharu Shirt: from Bright gradation dress by Aoharu Belt: Twin skinny belt in pink by Aoharu Shoes: Bubble pearl heel in pink by Aoharu Hair: Yulia in black by Aoharu Skin: Sakura in peacock by Redgrave Shirt: from Drapery dress in ivory by Aoharu Skirt: Gingham check skirt in red-olive by Aoharu Sandals: Flat gladiator sandals in brown by Aoharu

Pose: Top Model Reunion - Group pose by Lost Angel 26

Hair: Gertrude in black by Curio Skin: Sundust frex [Dark] Lovely-Firehouse 2 by :GP: Outfit: Check short jacket set by Aoharu Shoes: Ribbon platform in red by Aoharu

Hair: Nucco in chocolate by 0 Style Skin: Sundust frex [Dark] Lovely-Firehouse 2 by :GP: Dress: big ribbon dress in white by Aoharu Sandals: Ethnic bijou sandals in Opal by Aoharu

Aoharu Aoharu is the hub of the wonderful creations by Machang Pichot. Soon after she opened her apparel store, she began experimenting with making hair and shoes. Machang’s rich imagination and care for details is immediately apparent in her designs. Now the popular Aoharu Walk shoes line has a special Luxury Line with some of the most elegant and originally designed prim shoes (with feet) available on the grid. Aoharu’s Main Store AOHARU (111/125/23) Blog 27

MIX & MATCH By Tomoyo Breitman & Cayce Newell




1 +

Hair: Brigitte in ebony by Lemon Pop Skin: London Revolution by LeLutka Shoulder accessory: collarina drama by Bianca F. Belt: Twin skinny belt in black by Aoharu Shoes: Vogue in black by Kookie Pose: Vintage by Sunflower Poses


LOOK 3 A + D + E

LO B Hair: Rawsyowki in black by Glitter Hair Skin: Jennifer in deep-red by Redgrave Scarf: Flxy scarf in grey by (DoMoCO) Glasses: Sylvia Frames by Paper Couture Bracelet: Aveu Bracelet by U&R Dogs Fan: gradient fan in grey by Digital Eyes Shoes: Malama in silver by R2 Bag: EL Bag in ivory by ICoN Pose: Happiness is by Sunflower Poses

A Sugarcube Goldfish Dress

B Anuenue Tiered Skirt





Hair: Amikomi chignon by BP* Skin: Sakura in peacock by Redgrave Glasses: Greta in white by Artilleri Socks: Flower socks in white by Aoharu Shoes: Jeweled flats in ice by 50 flats Hair flower: orchid hair flower in white by Artilleri Sushi set & pose by Nylon Pinkney (old Tableau freebie)

C Kunglers Susan shirt and vest


D Beauty Avatar Couture Sofia Pants



A + D + G

Hair: Vanessa in brown by Beauty Avatar Couture Skin: by Rockberry Nails: nailE[red] by Bijou Glasses: Oversized white glasses - red by A&B Hat: straw hat black by ICoN Shoes: Ribbon high heel black and bordeaux by Aoharu Pose: Hmm by Sunflower Poses



A + F Hair: Nucco in raven by 0 Style Skin: Belina in cinna berry by Bebae Belt: Au Di Leather Belt in orchid by Armidi Gisaci Headpiece: SCF by Wild O Shoes: Ella Petite flats noir by Kookie Pose: Whatever by Sunflower Poses

Model/Stylist: Cayce Newell

E Chikka Design Jamaica Top

F Modd.G Eliza Beach Tube



Beauty Avatar Couture Essenza Jacket

Hair: Novocaine Hair - Haruka - smoke Skin: [RockBerry] Megan A Natural FR Undershirt + Belt: Novocaine - Genevieve Long Sweater :: santa Leggings: THE CLOSET - MeshLeggingsBRW Headpiece: Diamonde Toko Headpiece by Valena Glushenko & WILD O - Frolics02 Necklace: Shampooo Pearl chain necklace White Shoes: AOHARU - FlatGladiatorSandals_Brown Pose: Leafy – Lazing 2.5

LOOK 2 A + C

LOOK 1 C +


Hair: IrEn - Sporty Blacks Skin: :GP: Sundust FREX [Dark] April-Showers 1 Skirt: ::: B@R ::: Tokyo Drive Blue Skirt Leggings: +SPICA+ black leggings Head Accessory: Alienbear Design (08’ RFL Mini Queen crown Member gift) Gloves: Picnic lace gloves Tattoo: **heureux**touch\Lucky-tatoo Glasses: *ottico* numero75 Bag: .:MANNA:. Music Hall Scarf: Maitreya Long Scarf * Sepia & MIEL WPGIV BLACK LACE SCARF Shoes: AOHARU - Knit Boots(Brown) Pose: Striking Poses – Hayden Panettiere 7

A Sugarcube Goldfish Dress

B Anuenue Tiered Skirt

C Kunglers Susan shirt and vest


D Beauty Avatar Couture Sofia Pants

Hair: ETD Felicity - Black Skin: :GP: Sundust [Dark] April-Pure 1 Jacket: {SMS} Knitted Cardi Blue Top: Modd.G Eliza Beach Tube (Sea) Skirt: “anuenue.TieredSkirts-Blue Bag: B@R - Clutch Bag Black (L Hand) Necklace: MALT Fashions - Chunky Necklace - Shiny Black Shoes: Periquita - Beda Sandals Black Pose: =IZUMIYA= FreePoseF09

Hair: =TEKUTEKU= ribbon(choco) Skin: :GP: Sundust [Light] April-Pure 1 Pants: MALT Fashions – Capri Jeans (Indigo) Belt: MALT Fashions - Colour Changing Belt Scarf: Zaara : Pashmina Shawl *almost black* Bag: +plus*Special Edition Shoulder Bag in Orange* Socks: !tarnished :: Bon Bon hallow eve Shoes: *Kookie* Natasha - Tartan Pose: *ELISA* Elements1

LOOK 3 A + G




5 +

LOOK 4 E + G Hair: =ROGE=Hair18_SP Skin: :GP: Sundust FREX [Light] April-Pure 4 Top: Chikka Design Jamaica top coral Undershirt: (Part of ) *COCO* Jacket&Shirt – Black/White Collar + Cuffs: (Part of ) Beauty Avatar ESSENZA Jacket – White Bottom: *Thimbles* Day Trip - Bikini P (hot pink) Hair Accessory: E! Gold Motif Chopsticks Necklace: MEZZO - Square long necklace gold Earrings: *mocorin* manmaru piasu Bag: Gbberish - Vera Bag (Louise) Ipod: [BUKKA]iPod Touch for Stomach Slippers: *mocorin* BeachSandal Koakuma Pose: *ELISA* Handbag4 Model/Stylist: Tomoyo Breitman

E Chikka Design Jamaica Top

F Modd.G Eliza Beach Tube



Beauty Avatar Couture Essenza Jacket


FASHION SPREAD Outfits: Felicity Blumenthal Pictures: Zoe Demar Locations / Sets build by Zoe Demar

Vernice Burks Dress: *Reale* Floratta long dress (dhalias) Necklace & Earrings: (luc) Gloria Bracelets: (luc) Goldstone/MTrio Shoes: Courtisane - Devoue Sandal /white Hair: Armidi Hair - The Glamorous I - Mocha Eyes: Genesis (Now: Exodi) - Starlight Eyes (Green) Skin : 02 Tan Skin -Leona- / *nude hair *REDGRAVE* Pose: TorridWear1 (pulled from ETD’s purses AO) 38

Autumn Hykova Dress: {SMS} Tartan Highwaist Shorts Blue-Beige & Top Necklace: kraftika No 125 Earrings: kraftika No 124 Bag: [ICoN]Enamel Bag orange/yellow Shoes: Decoy - Alexa Heels - Grape Bangles: Zaara - Nizam Choodiya Skin: Gala Phoenix - Curio- :GP: Moonbeam FREX [Light] April-Redbud 1 Hair: Tiny Bird - .:[ Tiny Bird ]:. WillowC - Ginger Eyes: Poetic Colors - pc eyes by LL - ocean - driftwood (m) Lashes: Miriel - (Miriel) Lashes - Glamour Pose: MaitreyaFModel16 39

Shelly Toonie Dress: Ibizarre Rhinestone Dress (black) Bag: =DeLa*= Clutch bag “Zazu” Crocodile - Garnet Earrings: =DeLa*= Earring “Antonia” - Garnet Shoes: Adam n Eve - Marie - Garnet Bracelets: *kraftika No 303 Bracelets Shape: PE (custom) Hair: PE (Stephanie, wheat) Skin: La Sylphide (Poppy, Red Carpet) Eyes: Artilleri (Loud Purple) Lashes: Crissy Designs (Irresistable) Tatto: GoK (the red tara) Pose: Custom by Zoe Demar

Dazz Anvil Dress: Casa Del Shai - Luna Suit Shape: Custom By Dazz Hair: MaDesigns Bernard Skin: Belleza Mathieu sk 1 Eyes: Prismatic Natural Eyes 87 Glasses: Gudshu Lauer Black Earring: FNKY! Bling Set #001 Shoes: Shiny Things CItywalk - Black Pose: Custom by Zoe Demar 40

Stacie Pryor Trunks: **en Svale** Antique Trunks Hair: .:.Foam!.:. - Floe I - Red A Skin: []:: TULI ::[] Hope (pale/br) summer Ring: (Elate!) Rose Ring brown Shoes: (Shiny Things) Romance Flats - ecru Shirt: [Plastik] - Kagayaki-Royal Shirt Belt: S&S - F_Belt_Silver Leggings: >Truth< Xanadu Leggings [blue] Necklace: [Cihuae!] Long Silver and turquoise necklace set Pose: TorridWear - Benchwarmer 01 41


The days are definitely getting hotter and everyone is enjoying their well-deserved vacations in a dreamy, summer location -- carefully chosen during the work year. And school is almost over! At least, in some parts of the world. While you wait for your vacation way from the metropolis, you can rock the city and dress accordingly. By Ana Lutetia

In July, the rock festivals are happening almost everywhere and during the sunny weekends to come they are the perfect place to release your energy and have some fun. I aimed for a modern rockabilly look with a bearded skin, an animal print shirt and (high) pants with rolled cuffs. The bearded skin gives you that cool 3 day old beard” look that so many people find extremely appealing. You won’t look like a Mr. Nice Guy but you would look like someone who takes care of their appearance by maintaining a perfect “3 days old” barb. The shirt is a classic design and the animal print gives a more hyped look -- the shirt looks so great with loose pants with rolled cuffs. These cuffed pants are a recent fashion trend and you can’t go wrong wearing these. If the “up” pants don’t appeal to you, you can wear the shirt un-tucked and still look great. A pair of simple brown trainers completes the look.


Shape: [M] m.Mauro - Shape 2 | Mauro by Manifest Shapes (modified) Skin: (IS) Ander - Este - Beard (Scalp/BodyHair) Hair: Philotic Energy - Mykal Wine Eyes: Shine Lustrous Arctic (large) Shirt: /artilleri/ classic shirt - leo Jeans: /artilleri/ Burt jeans *medium blue* Sneakers: [ hoorenbeek ] Cargo - Brown Poses: IZUMIYA Model Poses



A gentleman by definition is a well-mannered and considerate man with high standards of proper behavior. In reality, there are several definitions but this one seemed the more appropriate. In my opinion, a gentleman is always a gentleman regardless of the way they present themselves but most women still expect men to open doors for them and let them walk first though a door. To some women, that courtesy is considered an extremely nice gesture from a man and shows a lot of the way in which they were brought up. Other women simply don’t notice such details and others may even find this to be a sexist behavior. There are too many theories and points of view regarding this particular topic. In Second Life® we can’t expect that a male avatar would open a door for a woman but nice manners, even in a metaverse, are never out of fashion. In Second Life a man has to be prepared for all occasions and if an occasion comes that asks for a very formal outfit, a tuxedo is certainly the best of choices. There are tuxedos available in all of the usual dark formal colors. To try something instead of the traditional black, I picked a chocolate brown tuxedo that includes a vest, pocket scarf and tie – all drawn in the texture layers which is great to help reduce your lag. The top hat and the cane are the special final touches for this look. You don’t need to have them but these two accessories do make a difference and give the tuxedo a perfect final touch.

Shape: [M] m.Mauro - Shape 2 | Mauro by Manifest Shapes (modified) Skin: (IS) Ander - Este - Abe (Scalp/BodyHair) Hair: Philotic Energy - Rhodri Wine Eyes: Shine Lustrous Arctic (large) Tuxedo: !Rebel Hope Designs - Branson Tuxedo Chocolate Hat: *HATS* Top Hat - Brown Cane: GlE - Braced cane: Trans/Mod [Gaslights Emporium] Shoes: Adam n Eve Male Shoes - M110 Ruddy hi shine Poses: IZUMIYA Model Poses | cane poses 47


One of Gahum’s favorite things to do is to mix very casual items with very dressy items. He likes the way the unexpected combination retains an air of class while keep true to its relaxed casual roots. Gahum prefers neutrals colors and subdued tones, leaving brighter colors as accents. His hat and glasses are a relatively recent change to his style -- he has taken up wearing hats since he stopped wearing prim hair and likes the ways glasses frame his eyes. Kith’s style reflects his never-ending search for flexible, quality menswear. His favorite skin, from Dendou, forms the base of his Southeast Asian look. Upon that he adds layers of exquisite texture-work and tasteful accessories. Many of his favorites come with multiple options, allowing for different ways of wearing the same piece. All elements come together to form a light, summery look that is perfect for a warm, sunny day.

Gahum Riptide

Kith DeCuir

Hat: *ARGRACE* Hunting -only cap - typeD Eyes: Eyes by LL - bright - forest Treasure Glasses: K_gs Institutes Tattoo: TikiTattoo - Tikehau Shirt: The NakedTree - DropDeadGorgeous Pants: Regrave - Elegance- low waist (from the elegance suit outfit) Shoes: Kalnins Shoes - Crossyard Skin: Belleza - Miguel Deep Tan 7 Pose: DieselWorks Baasha9

Hair: *ARGRACE* ~ Glide ~ (Red) Eyes: <<< np >>> Lunar EYES - Lettuce Large Glasses: ROLE OPTIC GLASSES DION Necklace: *ICED* Camo Cross Necklace - MHO Hunt Gift Shirt: *ARGRACE* Natural (White) Men Tank: *Muism* 40% transparency Tank top/White Belt: Maitreya Coin Belt *beige* Ring: Ring--Men’s and Ladies Twin Twists Pants: (Elephant Outfitters) Classic Cargos - Creme Shoes: *ARAI* Sandal Skin: Ichiro -Ocher- /06 Eyeliner Clean (with Body Hair) Pose: MaitreyaMModel09 Pose: MaitreyaMModel09 Kith blogs



Model: Elle Kirshner Skin: Redgrave 14 tan skin - Vivian *smoky1* Feet: SLink Barefoot Bamboo Styleel: Suit:*BOOM* WIld girl pink Sarong:*BOOM*: Summer sarong= Black Hair: Pudge: Do me Seymour: Light brown Pose: *twosome*=Neck rub

Model in the water about to get nommed: Model: Keeley Huet Skin: Blowpop: Tuesday Honey (seductive) Hair: DP yum yum: Barbershopyum 09 (sesame) Suit: Kyoot: Stripe bikini orange&turq Flip flops: Detour: layback flip flops: black


Model: Babyhoney Bailey Hair: O’hara, Beach Blonde - MMS Skin: LAQ ~ Imani 08 [Nougat] Lashes: Moloch, The Obscene Jewelry: Zaara : Suvarna (White) Fat Pack Shoes: AOHARU WALK Long Python Gladiator (Gold) Suit:*UB* Bodytank Orange Pose: Pulling strings: No picture pose.

The model in Baby’s hands which she is about to nom: Model: Kay Yamabushi Skin:BEBAE - Belina *Cinna: Frost-2b Necklace: Puca shells: Kay Yamabushi Hair: !lamb. Teased Up - Powder Suit: Bijou: Bracelet: TOSL: rainbow

SOMETHING BIG IS HITTING SECOND LIFE®! Watch out!!! Big on style summer swimwear is attacking the grid with bold, vibrant colors to kick off your July with a huge bang. Styling and Pictures 53 By Keeley Huet

Armidi Nom Model: Keeley Huet Skin:&bean The Light Anger: Livid Hair: Mikan hair: love mouse black Piercing: Aitui:Septum ring Suit: Chic Boutique:Nautical Bandeau Bikini Shoes: Periquita: Sue shoo sandal (white) Earrings: [no label] Sweet Swallow Earring Bangle: Armidi: tres bagle silver (edited) Pose: *Twosome*Whoopsie head up!

Model: Violet Whybrow Skin: Tuli: Hope fair Hairs: (vw) Swashbuckler: red tones Suit: ::Exodi:: Olivia unikini (aqua) bangle: ::Exodi:: OAidan bangle Shoes: Periquita :Beda sandal black Pose: Snooky: Silly pose 54

The Starlust Hotel Nomming Model: Waverly Kline Suit: *twosome* retrospective suit: yellow Pose: *Twosome* Guak ma!!


ADVERTISING ROLE Magazine wants you to advertise with us. Our advertising rates are outlined below and we do offer custom ad dimensions on request. Please send your ad as a high resolution JPG or PNG. Ad submission deadline is the 25th of each month. Submit your ads or questions to: or Leeza Catteneo in-world. Payments in-world to: Rohal Schnyder

Ad rates are: 12,000 L$ Double Page Spread 7,000 L$ One Full Page 4,000 L$ One Half Page 2,500 L$ One Quarter 2,500 L$ One Column

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Pictures by Keeley Huet



Now, normally this statement isn’t one I support at all but in the world of Second life® prefabs it most definitely counts. Your actual SL home is the starting point for creating your own personal space. Luckily, prefabs on the grid are even more adventurous than you can possibly imagine. You can live in just about anything your pixel heart desires. From castles to mushrooms to sleek apartments to a rock caves, the grid is filled with amazing prefabs to kick start any empty piece of land on the road to becoming your perfect SL home. By Keeley Huet

The lovely shop of Trompe L’oeil is one that has been around for ages. It has a fabulous range of prefabs ranging from a beautifully constructed ski chalet type lodge to a beachfront style home. The prefab that caught my eye the most, and one that I have been drooling over for months, -(maybe even a year?) is the wonderfully adorable Hobbiton house. I know what you all are thinking: a Hobbit house? Isn’t that so Lord of the Rings? But I can assure you, this little Hobbit house is not cartoonish in the slightest. What it is, though, is one of the most magnificent adaptations of something from a RL book/movie I have ever seen in world. It is simply perfect. The thatched roof, the arched windows, the whole overall round shape of the house itself. The textures are rustic and most of all, realistic to the point where I swear this could be plopped down in the middle of the deepest, darkest forest and you wouldn’t think this was out of place. The inside is split-layered with a lovely staircase made out of what can only be described as tree branches

that lead you up to a landing that would be a perfect area for your bed. In the lounge living area there is a lovely fireplace for those cold nights where you want to snuggle up and just relax. If living the life of a Hobbit isn’t your cup of tea, Trompe L’oeil offers so much more, so be sure to TP on over and have a look. Now, think back to when you were a child. What was one thing you always wanted for all of your outdoor adventures? Well, I know I am not the only one who wished they had a treehouse and if you weren’t one of the lucky ones this next prefab will be right up your alley. The little Denmark treehouse by Tobias Novi is, in a word, fantastic. It’s everything a treehouse should be. It’s whimsical, it’s well made (most certainly more well made than some RL attempts I’m sure), it has great details like an elevator that is made out wood with a thick rope that lowers you up and down. The tree that the house sits in is huge and actually offers quite a lot of privacy because you 59

are pretty high up. The treehouse itself isn’t huge but it is certainly efficient enough for your SL needs and it has a great lower platform which is perfect for resting, watching the view or having a pixel party with your friends. Tobias Novi offers a few other treehouses so if this isn’t up your alley, then pop over and find something for your own getaway. You won’t be disappointed - the textures are just lovely.

These are only a few examples of the prefabs SL has to offer. There are literally hundreds of shops offering anything your pixel heart desires. Shops like BP, Artilleri, Blonde, Barnesworth Anubis and Ingrid Ingersoll have the most amazing prefabs. So, get out there and start shopping for your perfect house. It’s only a TP away!

New on the scene, houses by Turnip have made a huge impact on the grid. At the moment, they only offer one prefab in various colors and other décor goods. Even though it’s a new and small shop it certainly isn’t small on style. The Shoe Shiners house is well worth a look. It isn’t your standard house. Though it’s rustic, the look of the prefab could easily fit in on a city street, a forest or even on the beach. It’s incredibly versatile and the attention to texture detail is just wonderful. It has an attic door that you can click and it swings down just like a RL attic door. I love the screen windows. It reminds me of long, hot, summer days. I really can’t stress enough how incredibly detailed the textures on this little house are. Turnip is definitely a place to watch. If this little house is anything to go by their next releases won’t disappoint!

The Hobbiton@Trompe L’oeil Trompe Loeil Prefabs (192/205/34) The Little Denmark@ Tobias Novi Mycenae (106/92/32) Turnip Home: The Shoe Shiner’s house ID=293558 Lloyd (135/234/22)



I’m a great believer in the idea that an artist is anyone with the guts to put brush to canvas, hand to clay, finger to a shutter or any other body part to any other medium that takes a vision they have in their head, puts it out into the world with their name on it and says, “I did this and I think it’s meaningful.” That said, some things simply do not rise to the ideal of art with a capital ‘A.’ Just as some art lifts our spirits, opens our minds, shows us beauty and invites transcendence, some art simply... doesn’t: Dogs playing poker, giant-eyed children, Elvis - anything - on black velvet. By Kee Llewellyn

I bring this up because I’m beginning to feel like a version of black velvet painting has overtaken so much of the Second Life art world that I feel compelled to take a stand (or, at least, sit up just a little straighter in my chair).

was a chance to see, in one place, something of the best of SL art and something not. First to the “something”. Sledge Roffo’s “Primagery” show is an example of what art can be in Second Life. What Roffo does is create prim sculptures but he doesn’t stop there. He then takes close-up snapshots of his sculptures, finding amazing views and new art deep in the heart of his original works. The resulting imagery is lyrical and beautiful with a richness of colour and an intensity of line that is not immediately obvious in the sculptures, which are also on display. It is a kind of art that is unique to Second Life, and it is a rich example of what art can be when the artist looks beyond the surface and delves deeper into the possibilities and challenges of creating art.

Scripting is not, on the whole, art. There. I’ve said it. And I’ve said it because I am tired of going to galleries and museums in Second Life only to be confronted with what is, for all intents and purposes, the same piece of “art.” It’s a group of tortured, alpha-textured prims. It contains a few rotation or texture animation scripts. A touch of glow and ‘full bright.’ Often it’s set against a black frame. It seldom has anything approaching a cohesive composition. It seldom contains any subtly of colour or form or line. It’s like those “executive desk toys” you see in cheesy shopping malls: a purely mechanical method for producing an ever-changing array of random bright colours and shapes without meaning, direction or context.

Before I get to the “not,” I want to mention the very entertaining show of sculptural works by Red Randt. His “Prim Art” is light and often humorous. I’m particularly fond of his bagpipes and the flexi-prim office building. On the other hand, the work, shown here at Aho, is merely prim sculpture without much apparent effort to be more than what it simply is. A giant Rapidograph pen, for example. A somewhat more than nodding reference to Magritte’s “Ceci n’est pas une pipe” does less to establish the artist’s bona fides than to make the point that, ceux-ci sont (simplement)

I bring all this up because of my recent trip to the Aho Museum of the NMC campus here in Second Life. At this museum I was rewarded with an example of wonderful art of the sort that is quintessentially in and of Second Life. And, on the other hand, was confronted with some “art” that is, umm... Elvis on black velvet. It 62

prims - well organised and lightly entertaining prims - but merely prims none the less (the artist needs to get over his cutesy sense of humour). What harms the show even more is that the presentation within the gallery is haphazard and is utterly lacking in focus and flow, rather like a child’s toy box tipped over and scattered. Overall, Randt’s work is fun. I encourage you to go and see it. And don’t forget to visit the garden outside the museum for more of his work. I hope some day he takes some time to spread his wings and take a few more serious chances with his art (the office building is really quite good). I really look forward to that effort.

makes the show little more than a series of meaningless ciphers. This woman appears to have lived her life in little more than a purple-pink haze of color washes. There is some, mostly obscured, poetry superimposed on the images but, again, the question becomes, why these words? What does this poetry say about this woman in this image, in this context, at this time of her life? That none of these questions is ever raised or challenged is very disappointing. Boa can, and has, done so much better. As for Fluno, his work is passably competent: Kandinsky light. He’s come up with the idea of offering to send you a real life print of his art if you buy a copy here in SL. But he doesn’t offer you the chance to buy just the SL version (for s significantly reduced price). The prices he’s asking range from L$10,000 to L$50,000 ($38.00 to $198.00 USD) which seems a lot for a sight-unseen color (laser? ink-jet? professionally printed?) print. And the opportunity to reveal your avatar’s real name and address? I’m not sure that’s worth any price.

And while you’re out in the garden, check out Taggart Alsop and Mencius Watts’ “Flickr Gettr.” Aside from the rather precious name, this is a piece that skirts the line between mere scripting fobbing itself off as art and actual art. The sculpture, at its core, is rather nice and well conceived. It consists of an array of floating purple squares surrounding a central core of light. Nice. Pretty. Not much more. What it does, through its core scripting, is to grab pictures, from Flickr, based on a word you type in chat. The floating squares then begin to display various relevant photos found on Flickr. To which my response was, “yeah, OK, So what? Nice programming.” This piece could have been a lot more boring. That it isn’t, and that it manages to be a pretty piece of minor art helps raise it above a mere programming trick. More than that, though, it’s not. Pity.

NMC Campus West - The Aho Museum NMC Campus West (221/148/41)

Among the other works in the museum proper are a show of very minor works by Feathers Boa, and a show of real world works ported into Second Life by Filthy Fluno. Both of these shows left me cold. Boa’s show consists of seven works in a gallery designed for many more. I really feel like she phoned this one in. None of the pieces display her usual finesse, style and sense of humor. The show appears intended to present a woman in various stages of her life, from infancy to old age. That it is clearly not the same woman in all the shots -one of them appears to be one of Boa’ signature 3D-rendered beauties - detracts significantly from the effect. That the work beyond the simple photos does nothing to convey anything about the stages of this woman’s life, make any kind of observation or draw any meaning from the base photos - why these photos? Why these moments? It 63


Pictures by Salvatore Otoro


It’s another dark and dreary day in the neighborhood known as Rampart. You wake up from your slumber in your apartment and hear the familiar sound of rats moving about the floors. A look out the window shows you there’s not much to see. As always, the air is dense and heavy and the sun never comes out; the result of the post-apocalypse. In the distance you hear gunfire, pretty much normal at any time of the day. You look around trying to pinpoint it and spot some lost souls fighting for their lives. The streets are a maze of burning cars, rubble from decaying structures, and badly damaged streets. By Salvatore Otoro

You decide to get up and head out downtown to the City of Lost Angels but first you have to arm yourself. This is no place to walk and wander without weapons. As you walk out into the hallway and down to the building’s lobby, you scan the area for movement. Danger lurks everywhere and there is no such thing as a safe part of town. One step in the wrong direction could mean your demise. You walk out into the streets and look all around. This once great city is now a shell of its former self. The apocalypse came and went yet the survivors and newly arrived residents try to coexist in what is left of these cities and neighborhoods.

rals. These creatures walk among the human race and are in constant battle. Just because something looks alright does not mean that it is. Appearances can be very deceiving in these parts. Shape shifting demons roam the land, tempting others with their innocent appearances in an attempt to seduce, corrupt, and grab souls for Lucifer. Vampires wander the streets in search of blood to feed on and to fill the coffers of the city’s Blood Bank, which they own and run. Zombies stagger around as they attempt to infect and gnaw into their victims. Greater dangers exist and one should be extremely wary of calling anyone friend. A simple invitation to dinner could mean that you are the main course. The year is 2039, and though the Rapture has long since passed, the battle between good and evil has evolved into much more as it continues and is nowhere near over. This is but a peek at life in the City of Lost Angels, a role play sim in Second Life®.

Survival is a constant preoccupation because the cities’ residents are at war with each other. It’s not uncommon to be hit by a stray bullet, find yourself in the midst of a turf war, be the target of a sniper, or find yourself surrounded by those who would prey on lone targets. There is constant tension in the air for dominion, control, and respect. You trust no one but those of your family, if you are lucky enough to have one. Those that decide to wander on their own risk the perils of being attacked, enslaved, or far worse. Aligning yourself with a family is the best thing to do if you seek survival, shelter, and protection.

My name is Salvatore Otoro and I’m with the Brood Demon faction in the city. I was honored to be recommended to Role Magazine by Stacia Villota as a writer on all things role play. I have a blog aptly titled Second Life Roleplay (http://secondliferoleplay. ) which is an all around resource. Not only does it have game play tips and techniques, but it also includes shopping, sims to role-play in, terms and definitions, examples of good and bad role-play , and even stories and adventures that I have been a

Humans are not the only residents of this city. Its inhabitants include demons, angels, vampires, lycans, nekos, elves, zombies, cyborgs, and supernatu67

part of or that have been passed on to me by friends.

that is what made it so wildly popular. Role play sims were almost non-existent when Lost Angels first opened. Hard Alley was one of the few but it was more of a sex sim. Suzanna told me about Midian City, a role play sim that came along after CoLA. Midian was a strict sim in that its game system told player what role they would play. This was a sharp contrast to Suzanna’s game system where players were allowed to choose their characters and play them however they saw fit. Approximately a month and a half after opening its creator deleted it despite Suzanna’s plea to keep it open. It reopened a year later on its own island.

For approximately two and half years, I have roleplayed in the original dark role-play sim of its type within the Second Life metaverse, Lost Angels. I sat down with its creator, Suzanna Soyinka, and chatted about its humble beginnings as well as the current and future developments of what has grown to become an empire in gaming within Second Life. When I was first introduced to roleplay by a friend, I remember the original sim that housed Lost Angels. It was small and so popular that many times you were unable to get in. Suzanna explained that back in those days, she had land in a much larger sim, Satellite, where she was selling her creations. Transylvania and Le Cimetarie were two examples she gave of Goth role-play sims and communities that were failing in 2006. This was leaving a large group of people in Second Life without a place to go to. They wanted to do more than go dancing in a club, go shopping, or go to the sex clubs. They wanted something different and that is what she gave them. She considered it a shame that no one was doing much for such a substantial group of people. She had already tried doing apartment rental and that was not working out as she had planned so the land was basically there for her shop.

CoLA’s humble beginnings started with a crazy idea that grew from a few hundred people in half a sim to what is currently 55,000+ registered players and 250 active sims. All this in less than 3 years of existence is very impressive and a sign of consistent growth. Suzanna is also responsible for much of the growth of Second Life. She is partially responsible for Toxia, NoR, and almost every dark role play sim that came after CoLA. This has sparked growth in other segments as well, far beyond just role play. There are much more grunge clothes for sale now, as well as more Goth based businesses, and more weapons designers as well. As she put it to me, it’s not just about the growth of CoLA or CCS but about the growth of Second Life as a platform.

Suzanna has an extensive history in role play and community building so she worked on trying something different and placed some thought into applying those concepts into a Second Life framework that people would enjoy. She started building the City of Lost Angels also known as CoLA, basically as something to keep busy as well as a place to contain her concepts. Suzanna explained “I was just looking to make SL more interesting for me and for the people out there that I felt SL had become very boring to.” A few weeks after it opened on September 15th 2006, it was near impossible to get in. Her idea paid off and she realized that she had been right about people seeking something different. This was a place where people could be their characters by way of free-form role play and one of the first places to provide it for its players.

Second Life currently has something for everyone. These were not in existence until role play came around and opened a door to a whole new experience that was not there before CoLA. The only exception to this is Gor. Gor, which is more of a lifestyle than role play, involves knowing a lot of books and literature on the subject. Lore dictates who your character is and how they are supposed to act. These limitations and strict rules are not a part of Suzanna’s world where you are free to be whoever you want to be. Role play in Second Life has grown so much in fact that just about everyone role plays to some extent and some areas that use to put camping chairs to generate traffic now have role play areas. Suzanna pointed out “I found one once. I laughed, it was so hilarious. The wide amounts of paradigms I’ve shifted since 2006, are to me, well, humbling”. The more we chatted during this interview, the more I learned about CoLA and what it has developed into.

It was in fact the first of its kind in Second Life. No other sim at that point had done what she did and 68

According to Suzanna, CCS and DCS2 are currently, in her opinion, the only competent options on the market for community based role play. She elaborated on the economics of the different game systems. When someone gets Spellfire for their sim, they get a commission on all Spellfire based sales. DCS2 is similar but is a bit less one way traffic. “CCS’s entire systemic approach is socialistic in nature. The sim owners pay me, renters and vendors pay the sim owners, and players pay the vendors. The money goes around in a big social circle and everyone makes out. I think that’s largely why CCS stands strong against years of competition from DCS2 and even from WARPS”.

to the user nameplate instead of the current number percentages. This will make it look more like a game than it does currently and we can expect to see it with CCS II, the next major upgrade of CCS to come. As we ended the interview, Suzanna stated that she would be making a huge announcement shortly before the release of CCS II. She was very mysterious about it and said “There is something big coming. Something nobody would suspect and I think it’s going to shock the Second Life gaming world in total. But I can’t really go further than that till it happens, but it will happen before CCS II, possibly by July.” In fact, she said, it is something that everyone should know about. Having been though the many positive changes that helped CoLA grow as a role playing system, the player in me can’t wait to know about it too.

Among the items we discussed we spoke about the coming changes in Second Life as they refer to the unification of the adult and teen grids. Linden Labs has stated that all adult material will be relegated to a virtual red-light district in Second Life, away from the general population. Suzanna has no qualms about it and in fact prefers it that way. She says “I don’t want kids in my sim. I’m going to be the game that offers tits and ass. The game no one in the mainstream industry will make.” She is not concerned with numbers in as much as she is truly concerned about the dream she wishes to present to the world.

As for me, I know I will continue to be a part of the original City of Lost Angels. I will walk through the gritty and dark streets of the city and make my way to the demon owned bookstore nearby. I may stand on the ledge of a rooftop lying in wait for my prey to walk by, or better yet, I may patrol the city in search of newcomers to the city. If that gets too tedious, I may just stand at the corner, dodging the occasional stray bullet as I watch the passerby and keep an eye on my family. If you decide to drop by, grab a CCS meter in the subway station, look around, get to know the city and what it’s all about, and don’t forget to stop by and say hi.

As for the future of CoLA and CCS, it appears to be brighter every day. Currently in use is CCS 1.0 which will soon be replaced by CCS 1.0.1. About four to five weeks after that CCS upgrade is released, a CCS enabled Second Life Viewer will be made available which is currently well into beta. She is also currently working on adding colored health and stamina bars

City of Lost Angels Lost Angels (136/94/28)



Last month in this column, I talked a lot about photography - how much I enjoy it, and the tools that make it even easier. One of my favorite aspects of photography that is so wonderful is the ability to show something: an idea, an emotion, a product, etc. When you start really getting into photography, one of the first things you realize is that you are going to need poses. I have talked about great pose shops before, mostly for AOs, but even some of those shops have an inventory of static poses that are great for photography. By Aldwyn Zanzibar So you start looking through pose shops, and there are some awesome ones out there. You come up with some ideas for pictures and you increase your inventory of poses!

When you start thinking about poses, you really start to think about the human body. You have a vision of what you want, and it’s not hard to try the pose out on yourself first using a digital camera, to see if it’s ANYTHING like what you think it might be. So as you start to do some self portraits at home behind closed doors, you start to get a feel for what looks good, and what sounds good, but really just doesn’t cut it on film.

But you finally reach a point, where you just cannot find the pose that you WANT. This presents an interesting quandary. You may be lucky enough to know one of the many wonderful pose makers inworld. I have found many of them to be more than willing to custom build a pose. There are also some out of world programs that make poses, even animations. Some of these programs are very expensive, some are free. All of them take some time to learn.

Now comes the part, where you think you have any idea of some poses you think would look great in Second Life. You search around the pose stores, and you find some that are CLOSE, but not quite. Usually this might be okay for a project, but if you are really into photography, you really start to wish you could make some of the poses you have just fallen in love with for yourself.

Being the curious sort, I really began to think about what it would take to actually create a pose. I have always had a fascination with animation and by extension, poses. The whole making of realistic poses/animations is such a fascinating area. Let me share some of the things I DO know. Second Life®, like many other 3-D games, uses the BVH format to upload an animation, including poses. BVH stands for BioVision Hierarchy, which is a format for recording Biometric data to be used in Human Modeling. It’s not THAT important to understand how this format works, but if you want read up on it, do a good search on BVH and you will find all sorts of… well, useless but interesting information on it.

So I began to see what kind of tools were available inworld for making poses. I had a memory of a tool that I had seen on XStreet, but none of my searches produced any results. Being the persistent sort, I kept digging and finally found what I remembered. Once I had that tool nailed down, I was able to spin it out to the other tool I had kind of remembered also. Part of the reason I wanted to find in-world tools for this is because I am a very visual person. I like to see what I doing as I am doing it. I have always had issues 70

with taking something from an idea to a final product just in my head. I need to see it in process, to see if it’s really going to work for me. I also know from past experience that when you move data from one program to another, things don’t always stay the same, or don’t always LOOK the same. I don’t want to spend a bunch of time creating something outside of Second Life, and then import it only to find that it just isn’t going to work in-world. Another point on this: It costs $10 lindens to upload an animation or pose into second life. So the process of creating a pose could get fairly expensive if you are anything like me and tend to try many different things before you get it JUST right. One way around the cost issue, or at least a way to cut it down considerably, is to use the Beta Grid. When you log into the Beta Grid, you have $5000 Lindens to use inworld (the idea behind it is for people to test out all aspects of Second Life on the Beta Grid, including purchasing products). So, by using the Beta Grid, you could upload many different animations/poses, and not affect your main grid Linden balance. Disclaimer: I know when you log into the Beta Grid they transfer your inventory over to the “beta” servers. This is a one way transfer. Anything you create inside the Beta Grid STAYS in the beta grid. There is no way to bring it back to the main grid. Also, I don’t remember how often they give you the 5K lindens, it may be monthly. BTW, this is not a bad way for photographers to play with photographs or textures either. It’s a good way to save those Lindens for more important things.

This pose tool is probably the oldest of the tools I found, although I am not completely sure about that. I know I have just seen it pop up around my Second Life from time to time, and was the tool I remember the most when I started this project. After you rez this tool, and read through the manual (which is going to be a necessity with ALL of these tools), you really begin to understand the complexity of this process. This tool consists of three parts: The base, the poseball, and the mailer. Basically, you rez the poseball in the middle of the base and then use the controls on the base to manipulate the avatar on that is sitting on the poseball. There is a control to move the poseball around, and a figurine that represents the avatar. The poseball positioning tool is very self explanatory. It shows a ball, and arrows indicating which direction you want to move the poseball. The figurine is your access to the different parts of the body that you have control of, in order to create your pose. As you click on each body part, you get a menu giving you all possible movements of that particular part. For example, if you click on the shoulder, the menu gives you the option to turn “thumb down”, “arm forward”, “thumb up”, “arm back”, and “arm down”. This gives me an opportunity to point something out to you. Take your RL arm and put it out either in front of you, or off to the side a bit. Stick your thumb out, so it’s pointing to the inside of your arms (i.e. right arm would have thumb pointing to the left, etc). Now in order to turn your hand up or down, pay attention to what part of your arm actually moves. If you are anything like me, every part of your arm rotated, from the hand up to the shoulder. Computer animation/pose programs work the same way. If you rotate or move a shoulder, the rest of the arm is going to follow along, just as it would in real life.

As I began to look at these tools I was turned onto a third tool that is fairly recent. So with these three tools set up in my workshop, I began to see what it takes to create a pose inside Second Life. Before I jump into the tools, I want you to picture something. You are a professional photographer working with a model. You have any an idea for a shot, but you must convey this image to your model. Telling them how you want them to pose their body, how each part should be positioned, etc. The process is SOMEWHAT easier because the model hopefully will be able to interpret what you are asking for and deliver. When dealing with an avatar it’s not quite that easy, but you get an idea of what we are up against in doing this. Ok, let’s take a look at these tools!

Now, as you pick one of the available options for that particular body part, the avatar currently sitting on the poseball will move into the position asked for. This becomes very handy quickly, as you can see what your avatar is going to look like as you position all the body parts into positions you want them. This process is a bit cumbersome at first, but the more you use it, the easier it will become to adjust the body, as you will become more and more familiar with how body

The Mannequin Pose Creation Studio 71

movements work. It just takes a little patience. U-Poser V2.0

will not interfere with the communications channels. Unfortunately it does make creating a couples pose a bit difficult, at least in my working of it.

This particular tool is probably one of the more detailed tools I have ever seen in Second Life. I feel I would be safe in saying that if you are going to create poses inworld at all, you MUST have this tool. This tool works a bit differently from “The Mannequin” in that instead of having a poseball on a base pad, you are actually working with a full size mannequin, using both tools right on the mannequin and a HUD to control the positioning.

Using U-Poser, I was able to make two folders, and have 2 sets of tools, using 2 HUDS and 2 mannequins. I was even able to change the color scheme of each mannequin, and color indicators on the HUD, so it was easy to have 2 mannequins and HUDS out and on my screen, and not get confused as to which mannequin I was adjusting. This was VERY handy and made putting together some couples poses VERY easy. This brings me to the third and final tool I found for this project.

The reason I feel this tool is absolutely essential is that the level of control and refinement you have are absolutely amazing. As you begin to work with tool you find that you have quite a bit of flexibility in movement of the mannequin. As you click on each body part, you will get a familiar set of movement/rotation lines, looking very similar to the sphere that shows up on a Second Life prim when you select “rotate”. This gives you mouse control on the rotation and position of that particular body part.

AnyPose BVH V1.3 Pose Stand This tool is the newest of the bunch and I have to say, it impressed me very much. While somewhat similar to U-Poser, AnyPose has some features that make it a very valuable tool to have. AnyPose shares characteristics from both “The Mannequin” and “U-Poser”, and does it in such a way to grab what I consider the best parts of both. When using AnyPose, you use your own avatar (or a friend), and control the body parts via a HUD. The HUD is very straight forward, and has some very nice features.

As I mentioned, this tool also has a HUD that is part of the system. The HUD is where you can REALLY get detailed in the body positioning. Once you have used your mouse to get a body part positioned as close as you can, using the HUD lets you make VERY small detailed corrections, to get it JUST right. This is VERY well done, and very handy in getting just the right position you want.

As I mentioned in the U-Poser section, I was able to create two folders and have separate HUDS and mannequins to be able to work on couples poses. In the AnyPose system, the HUD controls up to 6 different pose stands, which makes creating couples poses that much easier, and takes up less screen real estate when working.

A nice feature of this tool is that you can pick the body part to move from either the HUD or the mannequin, and the rotation/movement prims will follow along. The body parts that will be affected by moving your selection will also change color, giving you a visual indication of what will happen when you start moving this part.

I personally prefer using real avatars when creating poses, because there are certain body part positions, that have serious joint issues (meaning they look REALLY funky inworld). I found the AnyPose system to be very workable, even when just trying to throw a pose together for a quick photo.

As I was working with these tools, I began to wonder if they could be used for creating couples. As much as individual photography is done in Second Life, couples photography is as popular, if not MORE popular in many ways. This definitely adds another of complexity to the mix. With “The Mannequin” you can have two different versions near each other, and they

All three of these tools will save a pose that is being worked on, but it’s important that you save any work you are doing on a regular basis. I have lost a few poses I was working on because of sim crashes, but fortunately, it was not anything too important. 72

Once you have created your perfect pose, all three of these tools must email you the information, so that you can put it into a .BVH file to be uploaded into Second Life. Being able to see how your poses look inworld before you even upload them into Second Life is a huge benefit for these tools. Even with the Beta Grid option, using these tools should help you cut the costs of creating poses by a significant amount.

selected your .BVH file, you will be presented with a screen with several options for your animation. The key one to check is the “looped” option. This must be checked even though you are loading a static pose. If you do not check this box, your pose will play once and then your avatar will return to its regular position. You will also want to pay attention to “Expression” and “Hand Pose”. I did not play too much with either, except to make sure my hand was not all spread out, as I have seen on some of the poses I have purchased in the past. This dialog also allows you to preview your single frame “animation” (aka a pose) before you upload it into Second Life. It will give you a basic idea of how your “pose” will look inworld. I would not rely on this “preview” for much, but it does allow you to see how things will work. I would recommend using the beta grid for a more detail review of your work before spending the $Lindens uploading to the main grid.

Another aspect of the AnyPose system that I found appealing is that the pose stands are copy, and you can save up to 8 different poses in each stand. It also has some features that normal pose stands have, such as a hide feature, so it could actually be used as a dynamic posing stand, allowing you to change a pose that you have created DURING a photo shoot! The AnyPose system was actually shared with me by the creator of the U-Poser system, because they have actually worked together, and have made both systems somewhat compatible. What does this mean? It means that you can create a pose in AnyPose, and then once you have it as close as you can get it to what you want, you can import it into U-Poser, and do the micro adjustments to make it absolutely perfect! At the time of this article, the transfer is only one way, from AnyPose to U-Poser. For what I was able to do with both systems, that is really not a huge problem. There may be some changes in the future to go back the other way, but in talking with both creators, it is not a simple process, as animation information is fairly complicated, as I mentioned earlier.

I have really only lightly touched on all three of these tools. Stay tuned for much more detailed information regarding these amazing tools at the ROLE Magazine website ( in the very near future. The Mannequin Pose Creation Studio Price: $5,000 Lindens Created by Katinka Soyinka Drakul (242/188/68) Click here to buy it on XstreetSL You can pick up a copy of the manual at Katinka’s shop in-world to see all the options available for this system.

I can see a lot of use for a combination of AnyPose and U-Poser for both anybody who wants to create poses in-world, and even a photography studio inworld, to give you flexibility in your poses that has not been available before to my knowledge.

U-Poser V2.0 in world animation and posing tool Price: $8,000 Lindens Created by Gearsawe Stonecutter Aglia (71/48/46) Click here to read the manual for U-Poser.

I know I have been prattling on and on about these tools, but there is one more bit of information I want to cover on this subject. After you have finished refining your pose, and have gotten the information into a .BVH file, you are ready to import your new pose into Second Life. Under the File Menu in your viewer, you will find the upload options for Second Life. Second Life allows you to upload pictures, animations, and sounds onto the grid. You will be using the “Upload animations” options for your poses. After you have

AnyPose BVH V1.31 Pose Stand Created by Phate Shepard Price: $4,500 Lindens Bay City - Morton (221/210/25) Click here to buy it on Xstreetsl I hope everybody is enjoying their summer so far! See you around the grid, striking YOUR pose! 73



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ROLE Magazine July 2009  

ROLE Magazine is a monthly publication dedicated to highlighting the many facets of Second Life™ and to showcase the most interesting people...

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