The Far Away: Death, or New Life?

Image of an old row boat in a field of wheat

A pic taken at AM Radio’s The Far Away. Need it for a poster for a build that I’m doing. Not much comment to make other than a) Help AM Radio out with his charities, b) thank him, and c) Windlight is your friend :)

Top 14.5 DO’s to create a good Second Life Photo

There are tonnes of things we can do to make a photo seem more interesting or, as per my penchant, more realistic. Just quick list:

  1. DO adjust your AV’s hair and clothes for this one shot. Hint: Female AVs: When lying down, reduce your breast size to a very small measure. They flatten with gravity, you know :)
  2. DO adjust your environment if you can. I love builders and shape builders who have a grasp of human scale.
  3. Do look for crazy angles, they often lead to inspiration. Allow yourself to move that camera around freely!
  4. DO have a technical understanding of the ins and outs of your SL client
  5. DO play with lighting
  6. DO take a shot in that one odd, tight little corner in an otherwise plain sim.
  7. DO take 80 bazillion shots, they’re free and you can discard later. Some of my most interestiing shots are imperfect and came about by pure accident.
  8. DO work hard on getting just one shot right too. I’ve spent hours trying to make a picture in my head come true.
  9. DO learn every inch of a great sim (and thank, praise, offer credit to the sim builder–everyone loves praise!)
  10. DO be willing to do something that you’ve never seen and put it out there.
  11. DO ask questions, meet nice people, listen carefully, remember and learn. Talent is just the root, hard work and practice is what pays off.
  12. DO, DO, DO make your picture create a story or a world in one snapshot.
  13. DO use your imagination
  14. Do have fun. If this isn’t about fun, I don’t know what is.

Do find someone you love and give them a hug during a shoot. It’s good for inspiration and reduces carpal tunnel syndrome :)

Raising the bar on Second Life Photography

Second Life offer’s great opportunities to take really great pictures. One can take as much advantage of SL as we can in real life, all technical considerations aside. Yes, the 3D environment has it’s limitations, as does real life.  It also offers opportunities that real life doesn’t offer–when’s the last time you’ve taken a self-portrait on the fly from 15 feet up in the air?

There are technical hurdles. Our AVs break and bend and distort with poses. Sometimes there are anti-aliasing problems. The world acts unnaturally (I hate it when skirts flow though our AVs and furniture, same with hair!), but this can be as much a challenge as a limitation, and often, the easy way out (photoshop) does not have to be our first response to such things.

There are basically three types of images we can take in SL:

  1. Fun friendly snapshots. We don’t expect much of these, they’re meant to capture a fun moment.
  2. Commercial photography. OK, so, for a poster, I can understand why you would want a static pose. Cleaning up some joint cracks or anti-aliasing? Makes perfect sense.
  3. “Photography” photography. That’s where we try to emulate as much as is reasonably possible, what we would do in RL if we were all perfect, beautiful model-gorgeous creatures.

My peevs start as follows: Read the rest of this entry »