It’s hard to believe it is May and that summer is supposedly just around the corner. After a burst of sudden warm weather which suggested spring had finally arrived, the weather has been a riot: rain, odd bursts of hail, thunderstorms and high winds. They’re even reporting snow in Devon!
I’m not sure if the weather in real life has affected my thinking about Second Life (some of my thoughts about the platform and my involvement in it has been a little on the grey side this last week), but while running through my list of places to blog about and rifling through the folders of snaps I have of places, I was struck by just how summery my snaps look. So I set off to try something different, although I hadn’t a clue what.
Fortunately, I didn’t have to spend too long scratching my head over what it is I was looking for. As soon as I stepped into Winter Moon, Dream Shadowcry’s evocative homestead region, I knew I’d found it.
In a world of often bright, vibrant colours, it’s not often you come across something which is almost – and quite naturally – monochrome in Second Life, but Winter Moon is precisely that – and it is precisely that in a most magnificent way.
Rain pours from the sky when you arrive, and breakers crash against the shore. The lowering sky reduces everything to shades of grey and washed-out colour over which bright white falls tumble, while muslin-like clouds scud across the sky. “Atmospheric” doesn’t come close to describing the way in which this region has been put together – I strongly recommend that you keep to the region windlight settings when you arrive for the first time and, if you can, run with Advanced Lighting Model (“Lighting and shadows” in older viewer versions) active – you can keep shadows set to “None”.
There are paths to follow around the region, and places to discover; wandering and discovery are invited, and in places handy camera and telescopes point to vistas and images worthy of a snap or two – not that the entire region isn’t highly photogenic. Here and there are places to sit, either alone or with a loved one or friend. Some of these lend themselves to quite introspection, others provide an opportunity to dance. All add to the whole.
The attention to detail is wonderful – make sure you drop into the little orangery on the south side of the region. This is a beautifully composed piece, complete with half-eaten pizza lying in is box, together with a couple of Pepsi cans alongside the bed which clearly evoke a feeling when seen, and the movie playing on the projector at the foot of the bed further enhances the mood.
I advise keeping to the default windlight when making a first visit – particularly if you can run with Advanced Lighting Model active – because the overall monochrome effect of the region allows for a number of quite unexpected surprises, with sudden splashes of colour appearing as you pass the lamps and lights marking paths and gates.
For those not into greys and rain, the region also lends itself to a wide range of windlight settings, making it another perfect location of the SL photographer and explorer, as I hope the few scattered through my sideshow from a previous visit will demonstrate.
A highly recommended place to visit.
(view slideshow full-screen)