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Cerridwen's Cauldron, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Cerridwen’s Cauldron, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Almost all of you reading this will know Elicio Ember’s work. If you don’t own several pieces yourselves, then you will have seen it around the grid, sometimes in fantasy areas, sometimes adding a touch of mystery and romance to other locations as well. We’ve shown his work many times on Designing Worlds – a couple of times in shows about him, but many more times as we film other places that use his items.

The Ruins of Nu Orne, photographed by Judith LeFevre

The Ruins of Nu Orne, photographed by Judith LeFevre

Elicio has designed some of the most beautiful regions in Second Life – his own Cerridwen’s Cauldron (which we used in filming Season 1 Episode 4 of The Blackened Mirror), but also stunning regions for Fantasy Faire – the glorious glass lanterns of Titan’s Hollow, the mysterious decaying Ruins of Nu Orne, returning to the jungle – and so many others. He created the wonderful Otherworld where the Fantasy Faire Literary Festival was held last year.

Titan's Hollow, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Titan’s Hollow, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

And his store is filled with beautiful items – water lilies and surprising plants, glowing obelisks and intricate temples. To everything he brings a touch of fantasy that is grounded in reality; his background in the dual worlds of biology and graphic design make even his wildest creations completely plausible.

Elicio's Lilies

Elicio’s Lilies

On top of all this, Elicio is one of the sweetest and kindest people I know, whether in Second Life or the real world. He is warm and deeply supportive of friends – and he has many, and gives unsparingly to causes that he believes in.

A Cave of Elicio's beautiful plants on Night Whispers

A Cave of Elicio’s beautiful plants on Night Whispers

So, that made it all the more sad to receive the news today that his father has had a very serious stroke, and that Elicio and his sisters, who are all in Mexico, are faced with very serious medical bills.

On Facebook he writes:

My father had a stroke yesterday that was not seen to until today. There is no clear prognosis yet but things are serious and some kind of neural damage is confirmed. How serious is yet unknown, as his brain is still swollen and blood obscures the true size of the damage. …

Public health security in Mexico is insufficient and often of very low quality. And often even government institutions seek ways for skirting or ignoring health insurance or not subscribing their workers to the public health program. My father is a 72 year 5 idiom speaker that gave language classes during the whole day at the Senior Citizens University in Mexico. A government institution. Such institution does not subscribe their teachers to any kind of health protection program. Through a really shady 1 month contract-recontract practice that insures no teachers get health protection or antiquity bonuses. Even though most of them are senior citizens. So, my father has no health protection whatsover. Which I found about just 4 days ago. Private health insurance is usually out of reach for people like me, several of my sisters and my father. Basically the non existent middle class and below. Mexican public hospitals; although they admit people not subscribed to the public health program, they will often treat people not subscribed as low priority in an already overloaded and poor health system. It’s a Russian roulette. People can be treated well and recover. People die waiting to be treated. People die by malpractice. And if not subscribed to public health, uncertainty is always higher. So we took him to a private hospital before risking a long wait. I have 5 sisters, but not even between all of us we will be able to pay for the hospital charges without severely straining all our economies, not even considering all the expenses of rehab and care that will follow if…well. If he makes it. Which might be actually more terrifying than if he does not as its yet uncertain what the rehab possibilities are.
That’s why, even though I have asked you for support by buying my work during my last months upheld, I will have to ask you for it yet again …

So I am making a rare appeal. I am asking you to go to Elicio’s store today. I am asking you to buy what you can. You won’t regret owning his beautiful objects. But more – I’m asking you to tell people about this. Share this post. Share the address of the store. If you can’t get inworld, buy something from his marketplace store. Tell your friends to go and buy everything they can.

Cerridwen's Cauldron, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Cerridwen’s Cauldron, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Elicio has given so much to Second Life. Let’s show him what Second Life can give back to him.

The Ruins of Nu Orne, photographed by Judith LeFevre

The Ruins of Nu Orne, photographed by Judith LeFevre

 

 

 

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Saffia and Elrik talk about Project Bento with Oz, Troy and Vir Linden

Saffia and Elrik talk about Project Bento with Oz, Troy and Vir Linden

Join us at 2pm SLT today, Monday 6th June, for the new episode of Designing Worlds at our studio in Garden of Dreams as we meet Oz, Troy and Vir Linden to talk about the exciting possibilities of project Bento.

And we’ll also be meeting some of the resident creators already working on exciting Project Bento features – Mahadma, Medhue Simioni, Teager, and Aki Shichiroji.

 

See how expressive a wolf can be!

See how expressive a wolf can be!

Essentially, Project Bento adds a wealth of attachment points to avatars that can also be animated. But more – it’s about extra bones to the entire skeleton. This gives the possibility for anything from a single ironically raised eyebrows to an amazingly flexible wyvern to ride.

You’ll see the potentials – from beautifully expressive faces to amazing control and detail possible in wings, tails, hands, and so on!

 

Aki Shichiroji shows her wyvern

Aki Shichiroji shows her wyvern

As Troy Linden says: “Project Bento is about the reinvention of the Second Life skeleton. Think of it as the long awaited version 2.0.”

Bento may well be the new mesh – so join us to find out what it’s all about!

 

Oz, Troy and Vir Linden talk about Project Bento

Oz, Troy and Vir Linden talk about Project Bento

To find out more see:
https://community.secondlife.com/t5/English-Knowledge-Base/Enhanced-Skeleton-Project-Bento/ta-p/2975160

To download the viewer see:
http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Linden_Lab_Official:Alternate_Viewers#Second_Life_Project_Bento_Channel

 

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The Golden Delta - Fantasy Faire 2016 - photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

The Golden Delta – Fantasy Faire 2016 – photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Join us at 2pm SLT today, Monday 9th May, for the new episode of Designing Worlds at our studio in Garden of Dreams as we pay the first of two visits to Fantasy Faire (recorded before the Faire closed on May 1st).

We talked to Elizabeth Tinsley, the Faire organiser, about the Faire and how it works. And we meet region designers Jaimy Hancroft and Eowyn Swords, who created the amazing Dangarnon, Judi Newall, one of the organisers of the Lierary Festival – and the person responsible for the Guides that assisted people who made the Literary Tours to ten of the regions, OldeSoul Eldmar, the Chief of the Fairelands Pawlice, and AineMarie Flanagan, who talks about bringing a store to Fantasy Faire.

Fairelands Junction - Fantasy Faire 2016 - photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Fairelands Junction – Fantasy Faire 2016 – photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Ironically, we filmed this show in the quiet days before the Faire opened … so no-one was quite sure that it would be the fantastic success that it was, raising over L$7,710,000 (US$30,844) and producing some amazing stories – many of which you can read on the website.  In fact, the whole website is filled with the story of Fantasy Faire, and well worth a look!

Dangarnon, Fantasy Faire 2016 - photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Dangarnon, Fantasy Faire 2016 – photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

But before you do that – come and join us at 2pm for the opening episode of our 21st season – it’s one that you won’t want to miss!

Or – if you can’t attend in person – tune in to the web at 2pm SLT on Monday for a showing on SLartist or on Treet – or catch it later in the week on our shows page on the Treet.tv web site at http://treet.tv/shows/designingworlds, on the SLArtist.com channel, the Aview TV Designing Worlds channel – or on the Designing Worlds blog.

Fairelands Junction - Fantasy Faire 2016 - photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

Blackmoor – Fantasy Faire 2016 – photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

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The Theatre at the Home and Garden Expo

The Theatre at the Home and Garden Expo

The latest episode of Designing Worlds – where we pay the first of two visits to the Home and Garden Expo in Second Life– is now on the web.

Sadly, the Expo is now over, but show you some of the amazing things that were on display there, and which also took place during the Expo. And our brilliant photographer, Wildstar Beaumont, will show yet more!

The Theatre at the Home and Garden Expo

The Theatre at the Home and Garden Expo

In this first show we talked to the three organisers of the Expo, Reven Rosca, Kaerri Rae and Cain Maven about the backbones of the Expo. We also talked to SisterButta about the innovation of including art installations, and to Eku Zhong for Culprit about her display this year.

Prim Perfect at the Home and Garden Expo

Prim Perfect at the Home and Garden Expo

And we explore the Prim Perfect build created by Eliza Weirwight – and the beautiful lantern release ceremony that took place each day at 4pm.

The Lantern Release at the Home and Garden Expo

The Lantern Release at the Home and Garden Expo

 

 

 

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From

From “The Tollkeeper”

Join Designing Worlds at 2pm today, Monday 26th October at our studio in Garden of Dreams, for our Halloween Special as things go bump in New Babbage.

Well, not so much Bump! as Boom!

Now, explosions may not cause much panic in New Babbage, but when it causes two of New Babbage’s finest sandhogs (one of whom is the redoubtable Mr Jebediah Biggins) to disappear into the darkest recesses of the catacombs, a rescue mission is rapidly under way.

From

From “The Tollkeeper”

But the catacombs are, of course, never the safest of places to go …

This is a special Tale of New Babbage, written by Mr Emerson Lighthouse and read by the New Babbagers themselves: Mr Emerson Lighthouse, Miss Bookworm Heinreichs, Miss Garnet Psaltery. Mr Mavromichaeli Szondi and, of course, Mr Biggins. Mr Elrik Merlin and Miss Saffia Widdershins also take part.

From

From “The Tollkeeper”

It is promising to be a spooky show, so make sure you join us, at 2pm today!

Or – if you can’t attend in person – tune in to the web at 2pm SLT on Monday for a showing on SLartist or on Treet – or catch it later in the week on our shows page on the Treet.tv web site at http://treet.tv/shows/designingworlds, on the SLArtist.com channel, the Aview TV Designing Worlds channel – or on the Designing Worlds blog.

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This week’s show is a timely repeat of our conversation with some of the people from Linden Lab about server side baking and materials.

Join us at 2pm SLT today, Monday 30th September, for Designing Worlds at our studio in Garden of Dreams, as we are joined by Oz, Brooke, Troy and Nyx Linden to discuss the issues of Server Side Baking and materials.

Nyx, Troy, Oz and Brooke Linden explain the changes coming

The changeover to server-side baking appears to have gone smoothly, and materials are now coming in on a variety of viewers. But what does it all mean for the Second Life user?

Server side baking is a whole new way of solving the problem of avatars (and system clothing) that fails to load properly, by moving this from the viewer side client to the server side. Nyx and Troy Linden talk about this and explaining what Second Life users should expect.

Katana, created by June Dion of Bare Rose, demonstrating materials

Then Oz and Brooke Linden explain about materials, normal and specular maps, what this is and what it means for our Second Life experience. And there are samples to see too – when Oz and Brooke took us to see the work in progress at Hippotopolis.  You can go there and check out developments for yourselves but if you want to see the items properly displayed, you’ll need to download the special Materials Viewer (it doesn’t overwrite the main Linden Lab viewer).

A simple cube takes on depth and texture under changing light

Materials mean a richer Second Life experience, and creators are very excited about the possibilities! But don’t take our word for it – come and watch the show at 2pm!

Or – if you can’t attend in person – tune in at 2pm SLT on Monday for the live show on http://treet.tv/live – or watch it on the web at Treet.tv web site at http://treet.tv/shows/designingworlds/episodes/project-materials.

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Now available on the web – our latest episode, as we explore the architectural beauties and the seamy underbelly of 1020s Berlin.

While Saffia browses the high class shops in Unter den Linden and muses on the wealth of art, architecture and cinema, Elrik explores the alleys and shabby apartments that show vividly what life was like for ordinary people in the Weimar Republic, and in a city that was open to experimentation and innovation like no other. And, hand in hand with that, went the famed decadence of Berlin’s clubs …

1920s Berlin - looking down Unter den Linden to the Brandenburg Gate

1920s Berlin – looking down Unter den Linden to the Brandenburg Gate – photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

It was a time of political upheaval too, and we catch glimpses of that – although the Nazis were still a comparatively small and disregarded faction, engaging in street fights with the Communists.  But this was a society dancing on the edge …

Jo Yardley, the creator of 1920s Berlin, talks about all this and more as she gives them a fascinating guided tour of the region with a soundtrack of authentic music of the era. It’s an amazing show – don’t miss it!

Berlin, the Alexanderplatz - photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

Berlin, the Alexanderplatz – photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

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