Coastal storms in Second Life

Sommergewitter; Inara Pey, September 2015, on FlickrSommergewitter September 2015 (Flickr)

For those who – like me – enjoy thunderstorms and seeing the sky lit by forks and shafts of lightning arcing down from the sky, Sommergewitter (“summer thunder”) designed by Nida (Nidatine) and Seraph Nirvana, is a must see.

On arrival, you’ll find yourself in what feels like a low-lying coastal region of gently undulating sand and grass capped rolling dunes. Scattered across the three islands into which the region has been split are a number of buildings – a large house and lighthouse close by the landing point on the largest island, and a houseboat and a large, modern pier-style house sitting on or alongside the other islands, which can be reached by wading, rowing boat or a solar-powered catamaran (handy if you are travelling in a group).

Sommergewitter; Inara Pey, September 2015, on FlickrSommergewitter September 2015 (Flickr)

All of this sits under a yellow/grey sky (which I’ve taken the liberty of darkening in some of these shots),  from which rain falls over much – but not all – of the land, and from which lightning periodically forks to strike the ground or, when seen from a distance, forms a flickering sheet of light through the mist of rain.

The result is a captivating scene, rich in atmosphere and look – a photographer’s delight.  Nor does it end there, wander the island, and you’ll come across strange curios and scenes, including pianos standing out on the dunes, a drum kit near the water’s edge, a lone table set for afternoon tea, and an easel and painting kit, apparently hastily abandoned when a downpour started directly overhead.

Sommergewitter; Inara Pey, September 2015, on FlickrSommergewitter September 2015 (Flickr)

Not all of the region is caught under a blanket of rain; travel west and north and you’ll find the beach pleasantly free of vertically arranged water, offering plenty of spots to sit and enjoy the sun while looking out over water of the more horizontal variety. Or if you prefer, you can head indoors and find sitting and snuggling spots where you can feel cosy.

For my part, I simply wandered through the rain, enjoying the storm while avoiding the lightning strikes (which oddly didn’t appear to bother the local sheep too much, despite a series of strikes occurring quite close to them!). This is a lovely setting, quite beautiful in its looks and deceptively simple in its approach; a place that allows something of nature’s own beauty to speak for itself through a coastal summer storm.

Sommergewitter; Inara Pey, September 2015, on FlickrSommergewitter September 2015 (Flickr)

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Four talents at the Living Room in Second Life

Nico Time - The Living Room
Nico Time – The Living Room

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015 marks the opening of this month’s art exhibition at The Living Room, and for September, Owl and Daallee are presenting the work of not one, but four talents from Second Life, with the gallery space also undergoing a remodelling as well.

On offer through until the end of the month are selected works by CK Ballyhoo, Jamisson Burnstein, DanelleDee, and someone whose artistry I’ve long admired and enjoyed: Nico Time. All offer an intriguing mix of styles and content, both from Second Life and the physical world, making this month’s exhibition a multi-faceted event.

CK Ballyhoo - The Living Room
CK Ballyhoo – The Living Room

On the gallery’s upper level, CK presents a series of images entitled SL Skies. As the name suggests, this presents a series of skyscapes captured by the artist, who notes of them, “no filters have been used except for the black and whites, to put an emphasis on the clouds.” The result is a set of pictures, some individual, some paired, all displayed in their own little settings, each of which has been created to match the scene captured within the image itself.

 Jamisson Burnstein - The Living Room
Jamisson Burnstein – The Living Room

Occupying the same level as CK, Jamisson offers images he’s captured during his explorations of Second Life. These are centred on three large format slide show screens, each of which slowly runs through a set of images loaded within it, depicting not only places but people as well. The pace of progress is such that each image can be fully and properly appreciated before the next fades into view.

Jamisson notes that he rarely exhibits his work in-world, “But The Living Room is a special place – so I am honoured to show some of my pictures here.” He’s absolutely right on his observation about The living Room, and on the strength of the pieces he is displaying I’d certainly like to see his work gracing more galleries.

DanelleDee - The Living Room
DanelleDee – The Living Room

On the lower level gallery area, Danelle presents a selection of her art from physical world. These are a mix of black-and-white and colour drawings and pictures, some with a distinctly geometric feel to them, some more abstract and others encompassing subjects such as fruit, sailing boats and butterflies. Having only joined Second Life in 2014, Danelle notes that she has found that her involvement in-world has both helped in her personal growth and encouraged her to express herself more fully; I empathise.

Alongside of Danelle’s display is Nico’s. I’ll be the first to admit this review is perhaps a tad biased towards him given I’ve included two images of his display. However, I simply cannot help it; I’ve long admired his work  through Flickr, the SL feeds, Avatar Social Network, etc. He has, to me, a marvellous eye for composition, colour and presentation, and I’m delighted to see his work appear at The Living Room.

Nico Time - The Living Room
Nico Time – The Living Room

The exhibition will officially open at 12:00 noon SLT on Tuesday, September 8th, with a party featuring music by Joe Paravane. There will also be a closing party at 23:00 SLT on September 29th, featuring Matthew Perrault.

And don’t forget The Living Room’s monthly live music party, which for September is set for the 17th, and features Bat Masters at 17:00 SLT, followed by Lyndon Heart at 18:00.

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