When I was reworking my little corner of Second life recently (and driving people up-the-wall with blog posts on it), I wanted to add a little more life to the place.
I’ve always used sounds a lot in my private region homes; usually in the form of scripted recordings of birdsong, night-time owls and crickets etc., and have also tended to use the sound of splashing / running water if I’ve had a stream or waterfall in the build (although confess I have yet to do that with the “new” garden design).
However, with the “new” house, I wanted something more; I just wasn’t sure what that “more” should be. While I love having Kayle Matzerath’s butterflies flittering and circling the flower beds and adding more colour as well as movement to the place, butterflies aren’t exactly known for being songful or chatty. And while I have things like ducks and squirrels and rabbits sitting in inventory, they also weren’t entirely what I was looking for.
Thus I set off to trawl the SL Marketplace for suitable ideas – and in doing so, I discovered Morgan Garret’s stunning range of garden birds. Or perhaps I should say “rediscovered”, as I first came across them in-world around mid-year, then lost track of them after his in-world store seemed to vanish shortly afterwards.
If you’ve not seen Morgan’s birds, then you’ve missed out. Seriously. They are the most amazing creations you could have to bring added depth to your garden or region; hence why I’m yakking about them now -I’ve hard-pushed not to since adding them to my garden earlier in the month!
There are around 24 varieties of bird in the range at the time of writing, most on sale in COPY packs at around L$350 a go. The birds cover a spread from North America through Europe into Asia and northern Africa, so offering a good range from which to choose. Each pack offers a given bird in a number of variants – standing, perching, “24 hour” and even wearable; and most include a high-res version for photography.
All are beautifully scripted, so once positioned, they bob, look around, cock their heads as if listening, and seem to react to noise and movement in an incredibly real way. And of course, they sing – but not just any song. Each sings in a voice that has been recorded from its real-life counterparts, and like real birds they’ll happily sing from dawn until dusk, before keeping quiet through the night – unless you want them to keep right on singing, which is why there is a “24 hour” variant or two in each pack.
The detail in terms of textures and the sheer natural movement Morgan’s birds possess has to be seen to be believed; I was totally blown away when I first encountered them, and even now I’m hard pushed not to splurge on adding more to my land. And with a LI of just three apiece, it’s possible to get a fair few into even a relatively small space, perched here and there or gathered at a feeding table, and so on without over-burdening a parcel. Each pack even includes a “perching branch” you can plant in or beside trees to sit your birds.
At the moment I have three varieties of Morgan’s little birds scattered around the garden and I’m sorely tempted by at least two more. Those already in the garden have a distinctly North American bias, so being from the other side of the Atlantic, so I feel a pressing need to balance things up a little 🙂 .
If you’re interested in getting Morgan’s birds for your own place, you can find them on SLM under the Grizzly Creek brand, which is managed by Dryfly (Julia Garret – Morgan’s real-life sister), along with the rest of their unique range of goods.