095 - Lights of remembrances

Where's Dim Sum? #095 - Lights of remembrances

Dim Sum sits in awe as she watches the magical scene with the gourd lights, the flickering candlelight, and the bright moonlight.

I'm crying again, like I did at the last Fantasy Faire I participated in. It's that transience thing again. The transience of these beautiful sims. The transience of life itself.

location: Fairelands Junction at Fantasy Faire 2013

UPDATE: Chosen as Second Life Pic of the Day 04/30/92013! Yay!

Technical notes

windlight: Bryn Oh's BLUNIVERSE
water: [NB] Sparkling Depths

This is the first time I didn't change the windlight, not even move the east direction. It was just perfect. I couldn't get a better water setting though.

In a clearing in this forest, there are big beautifully decorated trees with holes in them that show a glimpse of one of the sims. Very creative teleporters.

094 - Grasshoppers band

Where's Dim Sum? #094 - Jazzhoppers

Dim Sum settles down to listen to the grasshoppers play music in the park. Pretty good music, she thought.

These are very small creatures, actually, and easily overlooked. The sim is a whimsical mix of candies and chocolate and tilted houses and giant teapots and little creatures like these.

location: Ravenshard at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight: [TOR] MIDDAY - Azure desertation (modified)

093 - Auspicious dragon

Where's Dim Sum? #093 - Auspicious dragon

Dim Sum befriends the mighty red dragon, who kept her out of the water, while they had a wonderful conversation about existence and non-duality. After the dragon convinced her of the oneness of all existence, meaning that she and the dragon are one, Dim Sum attempted to breathe fire. But, ooops, that fire-and-brimstone scent was actually what she had for lunch.

While I still setting up Dim Sum and she was buried in the lotus petals, I received an IM:
The Royal Midget  (renate.marchionne): Greetings there. I am just visiting the fantasy faire and seeing the most impressive avatar I think I've ever seen. Are you that whole flower and the lilies around it?

Dim Sum the cat (lovelikedimsum): lol, no I'm the cat in it.

Anyway, I was born in the Year of the Dragon, so naturally I love the Asian dragons, which are considered the most auspicious animal in the Chinese zodiac. And red is the most auspicious color. This dragon was created by Marcus Inkpen. I wonder if he would be willing to sell it.

See the bottom of this post for another pic from the same sim.

Three more sims to go!

location: Lotus Valley Dream at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight: [TOR] DUSK - Beachin' (modified)
water: Default

After I was done with this shoot, I went back to a spot that I wanted to shoot. I couldn't get Dim Sum into the picture, however, because it's an off-sim installation. So, it's not part of the series.

The windlight for this one was a modified "Phototools- Lo Light 03".

Lotus Valley Dream

092 - Taffy roofs

Where's Dim Sum? #092 - Taffy roofs

Dim Sum watches the balloons as they turn slowly with the wind.

First picture of the day; one more coming later. This sim is like a little fairy tale town and I half-expected Belle to come dancing down the cobblestone street. Unfortunately, my beast is AFC... away from the castle.

location: Lumenaria
at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight: Annan Adored Light Explosion II (modified)

091 - Watercastle

Where's Dim Sum? #091 - Watercastle

Dim Sum remembers someone say that the negative ions produced by falling water are good for the body. Of course, cats think it's just a ploy hatched by humans to get them to take a bath....

I was a bit frustrated with this sim. It's beautifully crafted, but not allowing you to fly and forcing you to take the pathways kinda reminds me of Ikea. The Ikea store is laid out like a labyrinth from the entrance to the checkout. It's their technique to force you through the entire store and pick up that one thing (and that other thing and that other thing) that you think you need, because you only have one chance to pass that way, unless you go back and have to go through the entire maze again. So I avoid going to Ikea.

So don't fall off that broken bridge, or you'll have to go back the length of the sim just to get back up to the bridge again.

location: Valley of Ish'Nar at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight: [AnaLu] studio3 (modified)
water: Default

I did the vignette effect on this again, because it helps focus the eyes on the center. Here's what it looks like without the effect:

090 - Starry, starry night

Where's Dim Sum? #090 - Starry, starry night

Dim Sum rests on the rocky steps after she just barely avoided getting singed by the breath of a dragon in the cave.

Okay, I am RL-overdosed! And I'm way, way behind. Thankfully, the wonderful organizers of the Fantasy Faire are going to extend the event until Monday. So, today until Monday, I'll be doing photos of two sims, maybe three.

location: The DragonSpire at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight: Phototools- Build 007 Light (modified)

I tried a little bit of the new vignette feature in the latest Firestorm version, but it doesn't show very much because, well, the scene is already dark.  ;)

089 - Jewels in the sky

Where's Dim Sum? #089a - Jewels in the sky

Where's Dim Sum? #089b - Jewels in the sky

Dim Sum wakes up and wonders why there were so many people around. All she remembers was napping on a big metal block with a strange shape right next to a nice warm bonfire amid a sky full of beautiful jewel-toned boxes hanging from large chains. "What's with all these crazy people?" she thinks as she listens to them talk about a "quest" and dig through the ashes....

I found this nice quiet spot the evening of my last post. I found an anvil with an axe over it, right next to a fire. I could click on it, but it didn't do anything. And I couldn't sit on it either, so I tried just floating over the anvil.

That was the night I clean reinstalled a new graphics card driver prior to clean reinstalling the new Firestorm, and all that took six full hours, so it was early morning when I started playing with windlight, then I had to go without finishing.

RL was crazy busy yesterday and I heard that the Fantasy Faire hunt had started. But I didn't even think of it when I logged in at the same spot and people were coming to where I was. What on earth?!? Would I have to derender all these people?!?

Then someone told me that I was sitting right next to one of the hunt items. So that explained everything.

Anyway, two versions today. I love the night version because it focused on the lovely jewel tones. But the day version showed more of the delicious details. The sim was sponsored and built by the magician Elicio Ember.

And, go to the bottom for my response to Strawberry's new meme about blogging. (Warning: It's long.)

location: Titans Hollow at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight (day): [TOR] BIG SUN - Slips through walls 5 (modified)
windlight (night): Phototools- Lo Music Light
water: Default

Strawberry's memes - Why do you blog?

I almost forgot the weekly meme! I was browsing through the blog's visitor stats and clicked on to Cajsa's blog, which sends visitors my way. She says the sweetest things about Dim Sum! And, btw, I learned a new word! Peripatetic. Maybe it'll be useful in Scrabble some day.

Anyway, from Cajsa's blog, I clicked over to Strawberry's meme of the week. The theme is about blogging. And, like my alts, my blogs are numerous. Again, like my alts, each blog has its own purpose. I swear, with just a little bit of investigative sweat, someone could easily write up my biography just based on all my online presences.

1. How long have you been blogging?
    (Before you click on any of the links, I have to warn you that my blogs are generally boring.)
    RL journal: I started my very first blog in November 2003. (OMG, almost ten years!)
    RL travelogue: May 2005
    Opal's blog: I started Opal's blog in September 2006, soon after I joined SL. I couldn't write about my SL adventures in my RL blog after all! My friends already thought I'm crazy; there was no need to give them more evidence to prove them right.
    Treasure's blog: Treasure's very sparse blog started in July 2007.
    Brand blogs: The Mer Betta blog started in March 2008; Ancient Visions in March 2008; Ms.O.Lei-ny in July 2008; Cross-Eyed Beauties in September 2011; Love, Like Dim Sum in December 2011.
    Dim Sum's blog: January 2013

2. Why did you start blogging?
    RL journal: I can't remember why. I think it came up in a conversation with friends/coworkers, and I figured, "Why not?" I was always journaling both on paper books and Word docs. Doing it on the web seemed like a normal next step, but I resisted blogging long after it became popular. At that time, most blogs were personal journals, and I thought, why would anybody be interested to read about me? I still ask that question.
    RL travelogue: I was halfway through my MBA program, and my summer was packed full of travel plans. When I drove from Seattle to Minneapolis a year prior, I was too nervous because it was my very first long-distance road trip and I was driving alone. And besides, I was running late. So I decided that, in the summer of 2005, I would do some sightseeing and stop for at least two nights in each state that I passed as I drove from Minneapolis to Seattle through the northern states, then down to the San Francisco area, then a flight to the Philippines, then back to SF, then to Lake Tahoe, then east again to Minneapolis through the middle states. Well, it was an adventure and I just had to journal it! :)
    Opal's blog: Second Life was another adventure that had to be documented! :D  Actually, it was supposed to be another personal journal, less of the events themselves and more of insights and lessons learned.
    Treasure's blog: This was supposed to be a business blog, talking about my views on the virtual world marketplace and business to show the potential of the platform in terms of access to international human resources and its possible effect in global ecommerce. But the blog fell to the bottom of the priority list. :(
    Brand blogs: These blogs were more for communicating with customers and documenting the history of the brand.
    Dim Sum's blog: I really didn't have to do this blog, because I could have just kept the pictures in Flickr. But a lover said he couldn't access Flickr unless he signed up, which he didn't want to do. And when I was doing a lot of the stereoscopy pictures, I documented my processes and techniques in Flickr with the pictures themselves, and there was no easy way to refer back to those tutorials, which were buried in descriptions and comments. So I decided that this time, I would document my processes and techniques and settings all in a blog.

3. How many times a week do you post an entry?
    Dim Sum's blog: Almost daily, which is when I create the daily pic, because I committed to that.
    All the rest: Only when I have something to say.

4.How many different blogs do you read on a regular basis?
    First, let me tell you a story.... My late grandmother had plants at my uncle's home and she asked him to please water them regularly. When she came back to visit, all the plants were dead. When confronted about it, he said, "I watered them regularly! ... Once a year!"
    So, unless you define "regular" the same way my uncle does, I must admit I'm really a browser. I browse blogs and Facebook and tweets and G+ posts and Flickr pics and pins, when I have time and something catches my eye. At that point, the train starts and goes on for hours and hours. By the time I'm done, I've gone to several entirely unrelated topics.

5. Do you comment on other people’s blogs?
    Rarely, I'm a lurker. Same with other social media, I tend to fave, plus, or like, more than comment.

6. Do you keep track of how many visitors you have?
    With Dim Sum's blog and Opal's blog, I check the stats -- not really the number of visitors, but what countries they come from and what webpages brought them there.
    Regarding my RL blog, ... well, ... after my first year of blogging, my sister actually contemplated getting me a t-shirt from ThinkGeek.com as a Christmas present. She showed me the picture of the shirt, which said, "Nobody reads my blog."  (And my parents wondered why I wanted to kill her when we were preschoolers!)

7. Did you ever regret a post that you wrote?
    Oh, too many of them, but I figured that, at least, nobody can blackmail me anymore, because it's all out in the open. ;)  I've deleted only one post, which is too bad because I included a cute limerick that I composed for someone.

8. Do you think your readers have a true sense of who you are based on your blog?
    A true sense? Yes. A complete sense? No. Am I complete? No, and that's why.  ;)  I mean "I am not complete" as in "not finished." Although some friends would mean "not complete" as in "a few cards short of ...." (Did you read the third line under Question 1?)

9. Do you blog under your real name?
    Treasure's blog started out with my real name and Treasure's name, because Treasure has never been anonymous.
    Dim Sum's blog started out with my real name and Opal's name, because I gave up Opal's anonymity since before I released the book.
    All others started out under a nickname or under my SL name.

10. Are there topics that you would never blog about?
    If I think it's worth talking about and I have a strong opinion about it, I will blog.

11. What is the theme/topic of your blog?
    See Question #2.

12. Do you have more than one blog? If so, why?
    See intro before Question #1.

13. What have you found to be the benefits of blogging?
    Blogging (and writing in general) is therapeutic for me. It's like talking to a shrink who doesn't wonder if you're solipsistic (All religions that believe in universal oneness are solipsistic!) and doesn't ask if the voices in your head tell you what to do (Of course, they do! They're characters for a future novel! They tell me what to write!).

14. So, why do you continue to blog?
    In my first year in SL, a very close friend asked my permission to send Opal's blog to another friend, because he said that she was going through the same things that I had written about, and he thought that reading my blog would be a solace to her, because she would know that she wasn't the only one who was experiencing them. That kept me writing on the blog. Later, I heard similar sentiments from other people.
    But, in general, I blog (and write) because I can't help it. In spite of how I seem sometimes, I'm actually sappy and sentimental. Writing down my experiences and feelings and insights somehow make them more tangible and less transient.
    Like photographs capture a memory of a scene, a journal captures a memory of things not visible.

088 - Treesome

Where's Dim Sum? #088a - Treesome

Dim Sum rests under a tree to recover after a long fall from the crystal jail near the tops of the trees. She landed right side up, of course. Then she hears a faint little meow....

This specific spot with this specific tree grabbed my attention yesterday when I first entered the sim, and it grabbed my attention again after I fell off the jail platform after the last photoshoot. So, I have two photos in this sim. I'm going to have to do two photos in one day to be able to cover all the sims before the end of the event.

location: Evensong Woods

Dim Sum makes a new friend

While I was doing this pic, someone came by and went into the water. Then she floated above the water and stayed there for a while. She turned out to be someone very nice.
Akira (akira.voorhees): /me feels weird talking to a cat >.< I LOVE Where's Dim Sum! And, I feel the urge to pet you every time I read a blog post >.<

Dim Sum the cat (lovelikedimsum): (( LOL )) *meows*
Dim Sum: (( Thank you! :D I'm glad you're enjoying the blog. :D ))

Akira: You're very welcome! If you're not too busy, may I ask to take a photo? If you're busy I totally understand :D

Dim Sum: I don't mind at all, but give me another 30 minutes so I don't lose my settings.
Thirty minutes later, I sent her a message that I was relogging and she had already logged out, but she was back in after 15 minutes.
Akira: I actually just e-mailed you to let you know my internet went down for a bit, just in case I wasn't able to get back on tonight. But it looks like its done being dumb >.<

Dim Sum: :D yay!
Dim Sum: I guess email is slow, I just got it now.
Dim Sum: yes, it's the right email address.

Akira: During said time I tried to explain to my husband why it was imperative I get back in second life lol

Dim Sum: LOL
Dim Sum: I'll vouch for you.  :D
Dim Sum: If he'd believe a cat.  ;)

Akira: lol, he was like, a cat...really? well, not just a cat, an epic cat!

Dim Sum: lmao
Anyway, when she tp'd me, she was a cute little kitten! So here are a few photos from our photoshoot. Update: Akira has cross-posted, so you can see more pics in her blog.

We're already talking about what mischief ... errr, adventures, ... two cats could do together.

Technical notes

windlight: Places Cornfield (modified)
water: Glassy

I couldn't decide on the windlight for this. The reason I picked the version above is because it has a more defined focus (the tree). But the water looks better in the alternate version below. In the end, I chose the one with the defined focus, because it looks less ordinary.

087 - Yuale Nura Jail

Where's Dim Sum? #087 - Yuale Nura Jail

Dim Sum curses herself for letting her curiosity get her in trouble again. Who knew a crystal would be a jail?!? Hello? Any wizards out there?

She's actually hovering because if she sat on it, she ends up right where the ring is, so difficult to see her.

It was difficult to light this scene because of all the thick foliage. It's hard to find a good angle that would have some foliage but not much. And I also wanted to light part of the crystal, because it's green when lighted and blue when in shadow.

location: Evensong Woods at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight: Fluffy Big Clouds (modified)

086 - Weeping angel

Where's Dim Sum? #086 - Weeping angel

Dim Sum watches the people walk in and out of the shop, making sure to keep out of the way, while she wonders who made the angel cry.

The main attraction of this sim is the field of red roses and that tall tower in the back, but I couldn't get any interesting angle that includes Dim Sum, so this is it.

location: Crimson Fields at Fantasy Faire 2013

Technical notes

windlight: Phototools- Breakwave Building Light (modified)

085 - Magnificat(s) at Fantasy Faire 2013

Where's Dim Sum? #085 - Magnificat(s) at Fantasy Faire 2013

Dim Sum huddles next to the memorial for her great, great, great, great, great, great granduncle, who was one of the great Magnificats of his time and well-known for his prowess in the savanna. Dim Sum tried to shoo away the disrespectful seagull by loudly roaring at it, but all that came out was a little rough meoowwwrrrrrrr, which the seagull responded to with a disinterested squawk.

The Fantasy Faire is here!!! Yay!

I regret that I wasn't able to participate in this event again this year, but at least I can help promote it. It's one of the biggest events of the annual Relay for Life in SL.

Hmmm, there are ten sims and only nine days....

location: Magnificat (Fantasy Faire 2013)

Technical notes

windlight: [TOR] BIG SUN - Awwyeah (modified)
water: Glassy (modified)

084 - Globes in teal

Where's Dim Sum? #084 - Globes in teal

Dim Sum curls up in the warm walkway as she watches the orbs rotate.

While the windlight of the last picture reminded me of the book "Legend of Lost Earth," this one reminds me of "Logan's Run." Don't ask me why. But I half-expect Logan and Jessica to come running down the ramp.

location: Omega Point

Technical notes

windlight: Annan Adored Light Explosion II (modified)

083 - Bridge to nowhere

Where's Dim Sum? #083 - Bridge to nowhere

Dim Sum wakes up from her nap and realizes she's now in the shadows. She raises her head with her half-opened eyes to look around and assess the situation..... Hmmm.... After a brief debate in her mind, Dim Sum decides to conserve precious energy and just wait for the sun to move the shadow away.

I should have played with non-realistic windlight earlier. This place is so sci-fi, so steampunk, that only surreal windlight would do it justice. And I have to admit that I derendered a lot of things to simplify the picture.

location: Omega Point

Technical notes

windlight: Phototools- Horizon (modified)
water: Default (modified)

082 - Phoenix god

Where's Dim Sum? #082 - Phoenix god

Dim Sum balances at the top of the light globe, careful not to get too close to the burning wings. After all, who wants singed fur?

I've wanted to capture this sculpture since I first saw it the other day, but I couldn't find a good angle for it, until now. Again, this is mostly local lights and the sun above it, no shadows added.

Somehow this windlight in this place reminds me of a sci-fi novel that I read a long time ago as a teenager, and it has haunted me for a long time after. The novel is "Legend of Lost Earth" by G. McDonald Wallis. It was one of my mom's paperback books with another novel in the back which I didn't really read.

When I got married and moved away, I got homesick for that place described in the book, but I couldn't remember the book title nor the author. I could only vaguely remember the picture in the front and the images created in my mind. When we moved back to California, my mom had set out some books to give away and I found it in that pile. Oh, I was so happy!

I have that book (now falling apart) among my stash of treasured books. Maybe one day I'd build that place in SL or what I think it looks like.

location: Alpha Point

Technical notes

windlight: [TOR] BIG SUN - Slips through walls 5 (modified)

081 - Sea hoist

Where's Dim Sum? #081 - Sea hoist

Dim Sum watches as the mechanical sea horse is lowered to the water, and she thinks of all the underwater places she could explore, "I could use one of those!"

This is just outside the red-orange ballroom from yesterday. This place has a lot of intricate passageways but there's a lot more structures above that prevent the sun from getting into all the corners. You'll just have to come and see it. The place is almost like a sci-fi metropolis.

Anyway, I discovered Strawberry Singh's memes from her G+ stream. My response to this week's meme is at the bottom of this post.

location: Alpha Point

Technical notes

windlight: Places alirium (modified)

Strawberry's memes - SL names

I saw someone mention Strawberry Singh's "memes" and I wondered what those were about, until I finally saw Strawberry's own post in G+ about this week's meme. Read the rules from her blog.

This week's meme is about SL names. Of course, having Multiple Avatar Disorder (MAD), I'd talk about more than one name.  ;)

What’s your SL name?
Opal Lei / HiHo Silvera / Treasure Box / Treasure Shippe

What made you choose this name?
The first names I chose were inspired by the last names I found. Searching for a "good" last name and refreshing the web browser to get a fresh list became like a game.

I am an October baby, so my birthstone is the opal. I already decided on that before choosing a last name. I remember being very excited when I found "Lei" in the list. Lei is actually the nickname that my family calls me irl. It's the first syllable of Lea (pronounced like Leia) which is my "official" RL nickname. And Lea is the second syllable (pronounced differently though) of Eleanor, which is my legal name and the name that my dad called me when I was in trouble as a child and about to get a spanking for something my younger sister did. But because I was older and I should know better, I'm the one who got punished.... But I digress....

I found Box when browsing the lists to help someone decide on his business account name. So I decided to create my own RL-linked account at that point too. Treasure is the English word for my RL last name "Tesoro".

When I was creating Treasure Shippe, I had already seen that last name on someone else, so I actually searched for it in the lists.

HiHo Silvera was inspired by the Lone Ranger's call to his stead (Hi, ho, Silver!) after I saw the last name when I was creating the account.

What’s your SL nickname, or what do most people call you?
Hi, ho, hi, ho, it's off to work we go....

What’s your SL display name? Why do you choose to have one? (if applicable)
No display names for these alts.

Do you like your SL name?
Yes, every one of them.

If you could change your SL name, what would it be?
If I feel like changing my name, I'd just create a new alt. ;)

What’s the craziest/funniest SL name you’ve ever seen?
What’s the coolest (your favorite) SL name you’ve ever seen?
I'll have to pass on answering these two questions because I've seen a lot that I loved. But go to the Clever Nicknames Club group in SL, created by Gene Poole. There's a lot of witty names there, mostly using the original SL last names.

080 - Big Bang at Alpha Point

Where's Dim Sum? #080 - Big Bang at Alpha Point

Dim Sum looks up, fascinated by the bright colors and the hanging light globes.

This ceiling art rivals any you'd see in any hotel casino in Las Vegas. I don't know if the artist (Masoon Ringo) has given it a name, but, if it were up to me, I'd call it the "Big Bang."

Alpha Point and Omega Point have been around for a long long while. MODA had filmed a bridal fashion show there in May 2010. (Yes! Three years ago!) And afterwards, I did my own photoshoot of the outfits I was assigned for the show, including some stereoscopy pairs. (See thumbnails at the very bottom of this post.)

Of course, the place looks different now, especially with sculpts and meshes. But the theme is still the same, and everything is more ornate, like this ballroom and bar shows.

location: Alpha Point

Technical notes

windlight: Ambient Dark

I didn't have to modify the windlight for this because it really didn't matter much. The lighting comes from local lights.

Related photos

Fashion - Azul "Arwen - Ruby/Noir", triptych Fashion - Azul "Arwen - Ruby/Noir", Styles of Edo "Tuxedo 1", X3D
Fashion - Bliss Couture "Flapper Wedding Gown", X3D Fashion - Bliss Couture "Flapper Wedding Gown", triptych
Fashion - N'Vhe "Gothic Elegance Wedding Gown", triptych Fashion - N'Vhe "Gothic Elegance Wedding Gown", X3D
Fashion - Orage Creations "Aphrodite", Styles of Edo "Tuxedo 4", X3D Fashion - Orage Creations "Aphrodite", triptych
Fashion - Vindi "Bliss Grand Wedding Gown", triptych Fashion - Vindi "Bliss Grand Wedding Gown", X3D