The Drax Files 25: adding to the substance of our existence

The Drax Files World Makers closes-out 2014 by reaching its 25 instalment, which arrived on Tuesday, December 30th. Since the original debut show in March 2013, the series has covered a huge amount of ground and given a tremendous insight into the impact a virtual platform like Second Life can have on people’s lives.

Over the months we’ve been allowed to see inside the lives and work of content creators, animators, artists, fashion designers, educators, film-makers, musicians, actors and more, and have been able to see not only the incredible creative freedoms the platform offers, or the unique opportunities for learning and giving it presents, but also how it can become fully intertwined into our physical worlds, allowing us to form friendships and relationships that otherwise simply would not have happened, and deepening our experiences in life and our understanding of the world around us in ways unimagined prior to setting through the magic portal of the viewer.

Oblee at work in his studio
Oblee at work in his studio

Segment #25 of the show is very much a reflection of all of this. In it, we get to share time with Obeloinkment Wrigglesworth – Oblee for short, a musician who has found that success in Second Life does carry over into the physical world, although this is not his primary motivation for being in-world; it is simply a by-product of discovering the huge freedom and reach the platform has given his music – and his self-confidence in the process.

“I don’t see a conflict between the virtual and the natural world,” Oblee says of the time he spends in Second Life. “So little of our entertainment is a two-way street. So many people say, ‘oh I don’t have time for that,’ and then they’ll sit and they’ll watch TV for hours. Here we have a world that is built by its users and it’s filled with music, and it’s filled with visual art and its filled with all these wonderful things.

“It’s not an alternative to life. It’s adding to the substance of your existence.”

This is more than amply demonstrated in his own experiences and story. As both an individual musician and a session performer with other SL musicians, Oblee has been able to perform before international audiences through his gigs, the convenience of the virtual allowing him to share time with people on the opposite side of the world to him, and develop friendships and contacts as a result, be they with other musicians or the audiences he performs before. “You can do a world tour in one day,” he notes in reference to the platform’s reach.

That reach has allowed him to develop his confidence to the point where he’s recently released his first physical world album. This not only features songs written for his in-world gigs, but has also been entirely paid for through the tips he’s earned in-world through his performances. It has also achieved international sales on the iTunes store – thanks again to his Second Life supporters.

It is this idea of adding to the substance of our existence that, for me really resonates through this segment  of The Drax Files. It’s a beautiful term to describe our relationship with the platform, and one so clearly demonstrated in Oblee’s life, as noted. As such, I’ll leave the final words on this piece to him.

“Without Second Life, I don’t think I’d be doing the things musically that I’d doing today … If you have an idea in virtual reality, what’s to stop you from taking it to real reality?”

Continue reading “The Drax Files 25: adding to the substance of our existence”

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Bay City New Year prim drop

December 31st, 2014 will once again see a great Second Life tradition take place with the Bay City “prim drop” set to mark the start of a new year.

Festivities will be kicking-off a 23:30 SLT on Wednesday, December 31st, at the Bay City Fairgrounds in North Channel. Marianne McCann will be providing the music and fireworks, and food and drink will be provided.

The theme for the event is a wintertime soirée, and black tie attire is recommended, and all SL residents are invited to attend.

This will also be the final opportunity for 2014 to donate to Child’s Play Charity,  a US 501c3 non profit organization offers on-line communities such as Second Life an opportunity to help seriously ill children around the globe during their hospital stays with the purchase of games and gaming equipment. As of December 24th, 2014, Bay City had raised an amazing L$355,273 for Child’s Play through their annual silent auction and tree lighting concert, a Christmas tree sale, and other events. Hopefully, the Prim Drop will see this figure increase still further!

About Bay City and the Bay City Alliance

Bay City is a mainland community, developed by Linden Lab® and home to the Bay City Alliance. The Bay City Alliance was founded in 2008 to promote the Bay City regions of Second Life and provide a venue for Bay City Residents and other interested parties to socialize and network. It is now the largest group for Residents of Bay City.