What a poser!

marten - shame

My sincere apologies to all the pose makers out there! When I wrote yesterday’s post and whipped up a custom pose for the picture, it occured to me, I had totally forgotten about the poses I used in my previous pictures. I have edited the posts and added links to the pose stores.

Today’s look:

shirt: Nerd Project (lucky board, group only, free to join)
jeans: Lenox
scarf: Redgrave
feet: Vika Design
pose: No Strings Attached

Tools of the Trade

ion - cartoon

A few people have asked me how I work. Now, I don’t want to publish a tutorial or anything. I don’t think, I am that good anyways. But I have rarely seen anything on other blogs about the inworld and external tools people use for their pictures.

First of all, the SecondLife viewer. I use Firestorm most of the time, occasionally Nirans Viewer. I have a good gaming PC that allows me to set my inworld graphics to customised Ultra settings, even for every day use. I have avatar physics and avatar cloth turned off permanently, set my view distance down to 128 (unless taking landscape pictures) and I only turn on depth of field if I need it – it would make me dizzy if I’d use it all the time.

Every picture begins with an idea. Unless it is to create promotional pictures or vendors for my own products, I rarely take pictures just to show off a certain look. Usually, I want to create a certain mood, sometimes tell a whole story. Of course, that doesn’t work out all the time…

First of all, I try to find a suitable spot, or I simply go to my own photo studio. Next, I play around with poses and camera angles until I can feel, I’m “getting there.” Last, but not least, I fiddle with windlight settings until I’m as close to the mood I am after.
A little fine-tuning on camera position, pose and expression later, the picture is done.
To adjust poses, I use Animare. For facial expressions, eye positioning and hand pose, I use the AnyPose Expression HUD.

Next I take the picture to photoshop for post-processing. Usually, I do as little on the photo as possible, especially when it comes to vendor pictures. Ideally, I only crop the picture and do some minor adjustments on contrast and color balance.

I use a wacom intuos4 tablet, but as you will probably agree with Ion, my drawing skills are more than… lacking.

Today’s outfit:

hair: Gauze
top & shorts: 22769
backpack: Kal Rau
skateboard: Action
pose: [hate this]

Everything else was used in previous posts.

Allow me to introduce… Chanda

chanda - out of reach

Name: Chanda Fergusson
Age: 20
Born: Dublin, Ireland
Occupation: student (biology, genetics), part-time model

Here’s a young woman you don’t want to mess with. Too clever for her own good, Chanda decided to study genetics, in order to find a cure for vampirism. She wants to help her mother and godfather, who are both affected by what Chanda believes to be a genetical mutation.

She is very dedicated to her studies, but never forgets to have some fun, too. She has quite the reputation for playing friendly tricks on her fellow students. Rumours have it, she has fairy blood running through her veins.

In her spare time, Chanda works as a model for [hate this].

OOC information:

Originally, I simply created Chanda as a female model for my store, with no intention to turn her into a full-fledged character. Her main purpose was to look cute, with an edge to it. No offense to those who love their barbie girl models, they sure are pretty. It’s just not me.

chanda fergusson

Chanda’s basic looks:

shape: Flowers
skin: Glam Affair
eyes: Umedama Holic
hair: Wasabi Pills (*)
tattoo/piercings: the HV

(*) Chanda’s hair changes a lot, but it usually is either ginger or copper, rarely blonde. As a character, she is a redhead.

A few words about her outfit: I don’t normally shop for female clothes and my selection is very limited. The coat is meant for male avatars. To make it fit, I reduced her breast size to 20 (usually, it is around 45). I like the tomboyish look on Chanda, but if you want to keep your cleavage, you are probably better off looking for another coat.

Today’s outfit:

coat: Deadwool
top: [hate this]
skirt: HOC Industries
boots: Deco
glasses: Tokugawa
necklace: Maxi Gossamer
stockings: erratic
location: Rust.

Corvus – Peeking under the Kitteh’s kilt

corvus - kilt outfit

Ok, now that I got your attention… in my first post about Corvus, I forgot to include a full body picture and I didn’t say anything about his outfit.
This is currently my favourite outfit for Corvus for several reasons. First of all, it is rather unique. You don’t see many guys wearing kilts in SL, and if they do, those are either traditional, or gorean kilts. The comfy, gothy style suits Corv very well, in my opinion. And, after removing all customisation scripts, it’s very performance-friendly, too.

Corv’s outfit:

top: Sey
kilt: Flow
boots: Gos
necklace: Kosh
socks: Sey
pose: Posebility

For Corv’s basic looks, see here.

Allow me to introduce… Marten Zann

marten zann

Name: Marten Zann
Age: 23
Born: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Occupation: violinist

Today, I’d like to introduce Marten, an aspiring violin virtuoso from Amsterdam. Despite his young age, Marten is a widower.

He met Annie, the love of his life, in music school when they were still teenagers. As soon as Annie turned 18, they got married and moved together, but their luck only lasted two short years before Annie became severely ill and passed within weeks.

If you ever get to meet Marten, you will find him very reserved, maybe he won’t even talk to you. Please don’t take it personally. He does try to carry on, but his only comfort is his music.

The Music of Marten Zann

OOC Information:

I have debated for a while whether to introduce Marten as a character. His tragic story sure isn’t for everyone – and isn’t meant to be. Annie never existed as a character, though, she is just part of his tale.
On the other hand, and the reason why I did introduce him here, is the fact I love to use him as a model. Maybe I am the only one to see the pain in his eyes, but knowing about him, his story, helps me create a certain mood for some photos. I am not sure if that makes sense to anyone else, but that’s the way I tick.
Marten’s name is inspired by the main character of my favourite webcomic, Questionable Content, and the short story The Music of Erich Zann by H.P. Lovecraft. The story is about a voiceless violinist who keeps away demons with his music.

Marten’s basic looks:

shape: my own
skin: Fruk
hair: Sadistic Hacker
eyes: TheAbyss
beard: VCD
scar: Fruk
hands: Vika Design

Marten’s outfit:

top: Sey
pants: Ispachi
shoes: Deco (no longer available)
necklaces: Kosh
glasses: Kumaki

2nd photo:

tears: Sorry Asia
piercing: the HV (Hebenon Vial)
violin: Grollwerk
location (1st picture): Roche 
location (2nd picutre): The Looking Glass.

Allow me to introduce… Ion

ion

Name: Ion
Age: 15
Born: his father's private island
Occupation: student

Now this young man is Ion (spelled with a capital i, not a lowercase L). He is a 15 year old human old boy. Ion is very clever and a bit of a nerd. He dreams of running his own video game company after finishing school and university.

Ion’s hobbies are skateboarding (snowboarding in winter), playing video games and cooking. Even though he is quite athletic, Ion is known to be very accident-prone and is rarely seen without a cast, bandage or brace (from my own line of medical props, of course).

He lives with his mother, who is a fetish model and professional dominatrix. Even if he is fully aware of what she does for a living, she keeps details (and customers) away from him. Ion’s father is the owner of a big company and insanely rich.

Money has never been an issue for the boy, but he is not a spoiled brat, unless you count his regular shopping sprees. Ion loves to change his looks and is not too shy to use make-up or wear crazy costumes.

OOC Information:

Ion was the second character I created in SL, again on the same account. Since his looks are distinctively different from Corvus, it shouldn’t be too hard to tell them apart. He came to existance as a character during a time when I felt very vulnerable due to real life circumstances. Maybe that is why he turned out to be a bit of an emo boy. The people behind his family and friends really helped me to get through these hard times, and we had wonderful roleplay together.

To make this clear, by roleplay, I don’t mean any dirty stuff. First of all, I do not have any sexual relationships in SL at all and I definitely want to keep it that way – I’m happy and content with my RL relationship. And secondly, there is the fact Ion is 15 and a minor.

Ion’s name is the Basque and Romanian form of John, and is pronounced eeon (not aion).

Ion’s basic looks:

shape: my own
skin: Zanzo
hair: Dura
eyes: Umedama Holic
piercings: the HV (Hebenon Vial)
tattoo: Aitui (not seen in pic)

Today’s outfit:

top: Nerd Project (from The Mens Dept)
pants: Kauna
shoes: Deco
make-up: Sorry Asia
necklace: Kosh (from The Mens Dept)
watch: Yummy (from the Arcade Gacha Event)
finger tape: SiniStyle
pose: Madesigns

Allow me to introduce… Corvus Szpiegel

corvus szpiegel

Name: Corvus Szpiegel (aka "the Kitteh")
Age: unknown (mid to late 20s)
Born: New York City, USA
Occupation: self-employed

As you can see, Corvus is a neko – a white tiger, to be precise. His whole body is covered in thick, soft fur, mostly white and light grey, with darker grey to almost black stripes. He has fluffy ears and a long tail, but his most prominent feature are his ice-blue eyes. Corv sports a small goatee-style beard. His hair is black, with a distinct blue in it, except for his white fringe.

The Kitteh usually is quite friendly, maybe a bit shy at first. Just don’t get the idea of touching or even pulling his tail! He may appear a bit clumsy and confused, but don’t take him for stupid! He may lack higher education, but is usually quite fast to grasp new concepts, if brought to him in a way he can understand.

Corvus spent most of his teens on the streets, after escaping from his abusive mother, but recently inherited property from a great-aunt he barely remembered. Now he lives in Mirror House, a cottage built by his German great-grandfather Erich Szpiegel. Corvus runs a small store called [hate this]. He sells mostly t-shirts, with the help of his assistant HT.

OOC information:

Corvus was the first character I created in SecondLife, on the account with the same username – yes, back then we had last names! When I first joined SL, I wanted to become a vampire, but changed my mind after being constantly griefed by vampire players during my first days on the grid. I was looking for a dark sounding name and didn’t want to use any of my previous nicknames for different reasons. I didn’t know you could reload the selection of last names. While Szpiegel may not be the most attractive of names in hindsight, it is fairly unique and grew on me. I have yet to meet another Szpiegel inworld.

The name Corvus could be translated to “mirror raven”. Corvus is the Latin word for raven and Szpiegel is very similar to the German word Spiegel, which means mirror.

Corv’s basic look:

shape: my own
skin: Nomine
hair: Sadistic Hacker
eyes: By Snow / Fairlight Industries (glow effect)
beard: Emortal Concepts (tattoo) / Atro Patena (attachment)
make-up: Delirium Style
ears: OTCR
tail: Lemon Tea (formerly How Vexing, not seen in pic)
nails: Love Soul (not seen in pic)
pose: Madesigns