Thursday, March 31, 2016

Great Second Life Destinations: The Grey Misted Skies at It All Starts With a Smile



Kaelyn Alecto's It All Starts With a Smile is a classic Second Life Destination. Its current design is more natural and outward facing that ones in the past. Instead of a town center, structures face outwards to a grey misted harbor surrounded by misty skies and grey mountains. The overall effect is enchanting. Certain design elements, colorful planked fences return from prior years. Sparse modern architecture, such as the redwood-faced welcome pavilion shown above, are new to the design here. This is a gorgeous and relaxing destination, and highly recommended for a visit.

Your Taxi:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Heavenly%20Groove/147/21/23




See More  Blog Coverage:

Loverdag:
http://loverdag.com/2016/02/16/iaswas/

Bitacora:
http://bitacora-viajera.blogspot.co.uk/2016/02/it-all-starts-with-smile-feb-2016.html




See my prior coverage of It All Starts With a Smile:

April 2015:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/04/great-second-life-destinations-it-all.html

June 2014:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2014/06/great-second-life-destinations-evening.html

April 2014:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2014/04/great-second-life-destinations-charm-of.html




Looking for more places to visit?

To see more of my coverage of great destinations to visit in Second Life (scroll down):
http://www.eddihaskell.com/search/label/Second%20Life%20Destinations


Check out Scoop It Second Life Destinations forr more great places to visit:
http://www.scoop.it/t/second-life-destinations




It All Starts With a Smile has a Flickr Group:
https://www.flickr.com/groups/it-all-starts-with-a-smile/

















Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Great Second Life Destinations: Nostalgic Japan at Roche



Nostalgic is a Japan-themed destination that has an ongoing garden and yard sale. It is located at Roche, which used to have one of the most realistic North American island builds ever constructed.

Nostalgic is a worthy successor to the past Roche build. It is both whimsical and realistic, with a sense of scale and proportion that demonstrates why Japan-themed sims are as a group the best in Second Life. Sakura, Japanese Cherry Trees with their lush pink colored flowers are now in full Spring bloom and dominate the island plantings along with ancient and massive gnarled pines.




Look indoors and you will see superbly designed implements and decorative items, and trays of  delicious hot green tea and grilled barbecue items. The many cats and dogs which lazily relax around Nostalgia are so sated from all the tasty food being prepared here than that all they can do is emit a low purr and bark as the lounge in the misty landscape waiting for the morning sun to break through the sea clouds.

This is a highly recommended destination and offers many sight-seeing and photographic opportunities. I highly recommend a visit; Your taxi:

http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/ROCHE/86/105/21



Nostalgic Links:

Web Site:
http://nostalgic.slmame.com/

Flickr Groups:
https://www.flickr.com/groups/2908096@N20/




See More Blog Coverage:

Echt Virtuell (Real Virutal):
http://echtvirtuell.blogspot.co.uk/2016/03/simtipp-nostalgic-auf-roche.html

World of Yana:
http://yana.slmame.com/e1570530.html




Looking for more places to visit?

To see more of my coverage of great destinations to visit in Second Life (scroll down):
http://www.eddihaskell.com/search/label/Second%20Life%20Destinations


Check out Scoop It Second Life Destinations for more great places to visit:
http://www.scoop.it/t/second-life-destinations






I reviewed two beautiful Japanese-themed Winter Regions here in January:

January 2016:  Blue Lotus Okiya:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/01/great-second-life-destinations-blue.html

Neko no Jinja, A Japanese Winter Wonderland
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/01/great-second-life-destinaotins-neko-no.html














Monday, March 28, 2016

Eddi's Hot Computing Tip -- The Google Nik Photo Processing Collection Is Now Free To Download


The Google Nik Collection of photo processing tools is now free. The cost was $250.00 before -- but now are free downloads.

They work as stand alone photo applications or as plug-ins for Photoshop and some other programs.




PC World is saying that Google Nik is probably dead with no more updates -- the reason why its free. However, Google is discontinuing Picasa support. They want their users to use Google Photos for online sharing and photo processing. Nik should integrate well with this effort and they may up supporting it. If you like photo processing Nik is fun to play around with, and gives non-Photoshop users a free alternative.




You can download the Nik collection here.  Ignore the bit where it says a 15 day free trial, the collection is completely free to to own right now.

https://www.google.com/nikcollection/

I had some fun experimenting with Silver, a black and white conversion application that is part of Nik. You can see my effort here:

Original Photo -taken at Hermoupolis Village 

Conversion using Nik Silver

Note: After you install Nik, and want to use the different tools as stand-alone apps, you need to search for Google Nik on your hard drive and make a short cut for easy access on your desktop.  It does not generate a short cut automatically.  After, simply drop your photos into the icons in the folders -- some of the applications do not let you upload files directly.




Sunday, March 27, 2016

Great Second Life Destinations: Kaleidoscope Gets a Gorgeous Blue Sunset for Summer 2016



Krys Vita's Kaleidoscope changes with the seasons -- sometimes, several times and not in exact order. Her current version for Summer 2016 may, in fact, change again before the advent of the season in the Northern Hemisphere on June 20.  Make sure to head over now to see one of the most gorgeous custom Windlight Sky Settings ever -- a deep clear blue over a shimmering sea right when the Sun touches the far horizon. An open island landscape yields several good photographic opportunities including several for great couple shots. Krys likes to change Kaleidoscope often, so make sure to visit to see the current version.

To visit this highly recommended destination:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Kaleidoscope/185/144/28




See my coverage of Kaleidoscope in different seasons:

Winter 2015/16
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/12/great-second-life-destinations_26.html

Autumn 2015:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/11/great-second-life-destinations-praries.html




Links:

See more blog coverage at Loverdag:
http://loverdag.com/2016/03/11/kaleidoscope-march-2016/

Kaleidoscope Flickr Group:
https://www.flickr.com/groups/2870039@N24

Krys Vita's Flickr Group:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/131984683@N03/




Looking for more places to visit?

To see more of my coverage of great destinations to visit in Second Life (scroll down):
http://www.eddihaskell.com/search/label/Second%20Life%20Destinations

Check out Scoop It Second Life Destinations for more great places to visit:
http://www.scoop.it/t/second-life-destinations








I constructed the animated GIF below from 18 individual frames each over at  ezgif.com.






Friday, March 25, 2016

Great Second Life Destinations: Entropy III at LEA 16: Street, A Charming and Quirky Urban Environment



Natas Janus' Entropy III is a collections of individual art installations at LEA 16 that are well done and unique individual destinations. Yesterday, we reviewed Meat Mountain, a startling environment of composed prime grained beef, sugary sweets, and hard core drugs that can put a shudder through anyone concerned about the their life span.  We are reviewing Street in this post, a charming  urban environment that also functions as a gift shop (all items are at no charge) for the installation.




Street yields surprises at every turn. A smiling moon illuminates the Street urban landscape. Graffiti and garbage add ambience to street, as does a passed out drunk in the gutter. Fun animations, including one that simulates a gun being pointed at your head yield interesting photographic opportunities. Make sure to visit building interiors on site, including Absinthe, a glowing chartreuse colored dive and a spooky candle lit satanic church. I highly recommend that you visit this, and the other art installations at Entropy III which will shortly be opening.




To visit:

SLurl to Street (and Giftshop):
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/LEA16/65/107/3959

SLurl to Arrival area and Central Portal to visit other installations:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/LEA16/67/43/666

SLurl to Meat Mountain, another Entropy III installation, which I reviewed here yesterday:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/LEA16/161/31/30





To see yesterday's post on Meat Mountain, another great installation at Entropy III:

http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/03/great-second-life-destinations-entropy.html


See my review and photography from Entropy 2, the 2015 installation by Natas Janus, in two posts here:

http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/02/great-second-life-art-installations_27.html

http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/06/great-second-life-destinations-watch.html




My reviews of concurrent art installations at LEA Sims that you can visit now:

LEA 2: Funky Junk
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/02/great-second-life-destinations-funky.html

LEA 10: Cyberpolis, The Oracle
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/03/great-second-life-destinations_3.html

LEA 26: Heritage, Wrecks and Vestiges Fractals Exhibits:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/03/great-second-life-art-installations.html




Looking for more places to visit?

To see more of my coverage of great destinations to visit in Second Life (scroll down):
http://www.eddihaskell.com/search/label/Second%20Life%20Destinations

Check out Scoop It Second Life Destinations forr more great places to visit:
http://www.scoop.it/t/second-life-destinations

Check out the LEA Blog for current information on art installations:
http://lindenarts.blogspot.com/




I constructed the ainmated  GIFs above  from 19 individual frames each over at  ezgif.com




Thursday, March 24, 2016

Great Second Life Destinations: Entropy III at LEA 16 - Delightfully Disgusting Meat Mountain



Natas Janus' Meat Mountain, a new environmental art installation that is part of the Entropy III collection of works by Natas & Friends that has opened on LEA 16, brought back memories of High School. My most memorable class was Mrs. Rowe's Junior Year Art Composition Class. Having completely nude male and female models who wore these thin little nylon see-through bikini briefs was one thing,  the delightful Art and Music Festival,  where the entire class would gather on her terrace overlooking scenic Northport Harbor for brunch before the event another. However, the main thing I remember were the discussions and arguments about what is art, and how to determine if you are looking at has any real creative value or is simply garbage - the answer depending on your point of view.




Meat Mountain delightfully pushes the boundaries of what we consider art -  and contains several buttons and signs which ask the viewer to consider the timeless question "Yes, but is it art?".  Meat Mountain, also called Tlazolteotl's Grotto (Natas told me that he wanted a more polite name for the installation as an alternative) is composed of items which kill man if used in excess. Meat, which appears to be delicious fat - grained prime beef, serves as the landscape -- with candy, including huge lollipops,sweet high-fructose drinks and other unhealthy items sprouting at every turn. A giant plate of cocaine with a rolled-up dollar bill for snorting and flying pills (are they ecstasy tabs?) remind the visitor of other destructive vices. I literally felt my cholesterol and blood pressure levels rising to unhealthy heights during my visit - and made vows to immediately go back to a healthy Mediterranean Diet as soon as possible.




To visit this highly recommended destination 

Direct SLurl to Meat Mountain:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/LEA16/161/31/30

SLurl to Arrival area and Central Portal to visit other installations part of the Entropy III Series.
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/LEA16/67/43/666

SLurl to the Giftshop and to Street, an Urban Environment which I will review here tomorrow:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/LEA16/65/107/3959

Addendum - You can see my review of Street here:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/03/great-second-life-destinations-entropy_25.html




My reviews of concurrent art installations at LEA Sims that you can visit now:

LEA 2: Funky Junk
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/02/great-second-life-destinations-funky.html

LEA 10: Cyberpolis, The Oracle
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/03/great-second-life-destinations_3.html

LEA 26: Heritage, Wrecks and Vestiges Fractals Exhibits:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2016/03/great-second-life-art-installations.html




Looking for more places to visit?

To see more of my coverage of great destinations to visit in Second Life (scroll down):
http://www.eddihaskell.com/search/label/Second%20Life%20Destinations

Check out Scoop It Second Life Destinations forr more great places to visit:
http://www.scoop.it/t/second-life-destinations

Check out the LEA Blog for current information on art installations:
http://lindenarts.blogspot.com/



Benja Aquila tries balancing like a seal over at the circus area


See my review and photography from Entropy 2, the 2015 installation by Natas Janus, in two posts here:

http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/02/great-second-life-art-installations_27.html

http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/06/great-second-life-destinations-watch.html




All photography used Windlight Sky Setting  [TOR] MIDDAY - Why so blue? #1

I constructed the ainmated  GIF above from 19 individual frames each over at  ezgif.com

And finally, Mrs. Rowe, my junior year art teacher is a very accomplished multimedia artist.  She sells original prints and reproductions of her graphics works here:
http://doris-rowe.pixels.com/


Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Great Second Life Destinations: Stunning Atmospherics at Crystal Gardens



Crystal Gardens is a charming rural destination that reminds me of the mountainous part of Wales -- a part of the British Isles that is not widely known but is particularly beautiful. The quality of light at Crystal Gardens -- using the programmed Windlight settings -- is gorgeous. If you are able to run an ultra graphic setting, water reflections here shimmer and glisten in the late afternoon light. . I generally photograph using programmed Windlight settings -- and this is an example of how thoughtful Windlight sky and water settings can add much to a landscape designer's vision. I particularly liked the thatched roof cottage and windmill surrounded by really cute ducks and farm animals -- which cheered me up as I fished (rods are supplied) on the dock opposite this very bucolic setting.


To visit this highly recommended destination:
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Bright%20Diamonds/54/171/23




See Kat Feldragonne's for more photography from the current iteration of Crystal Gardens:
https://akatandamouse.wordpress.com/2016/03/17/exploring-the-crystal-gardens/


I photographed Crystal Gardens in 2015. You can see how how this destination has changed over the past year:
http://www.eddihaskell.com/2015/02/great-second-life-destinations-crystal.html




Sandi Beaumont, the owner of Crystal Gardens publishes and posts photography at the following sites:

Blog:
http://sandibeaumont.blogspot.com/

Flickr:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/sandibenelli/




Looking for more places to visit?

To see more of my coverage of great destinations to visit in Second Life (scroll down):
http://www.eddihaskell.com/search/label/Second%20Life%20Destinations


Check out Scoop It Second Life Destinations for more great places to visit: