~LIV-Glam everyday!!~

I honestly wasn’t planning on doing a post today…I am already backlogged with things that need to be accomplished… yesterday. However, all these commitments are exciting…I have my first fashion editorial client and I am muddling through all the details of starting a new business; more information on that coming up in about a week.

So to blow off a little steam, and to reward myself for learning how to create 3D text in CS6, I stopped by LIV-Glam to check out her fabulous weekly sale items.
~Styling~
Not only did I find this gorgeous Anikin Bodycon Dress for an absolute steal at 99L, but I also scored the furniture, pictures and accessories displayed behind me; also for the amazing price of only 99L for the whole set!  Wait!!  It doesn’t stop there…part of the LIV-Glam genius is that her items are sold as HUDs.  What that means is when you purchase an item it is delivered as a HUD…you wear/add the HUD and choose the size you will wear…then the item is delivered to your inventory for you to use.

NO MORE cluttering up your inventory with a gazillion different sizes of the same item, no more tediously deleting ALL the other sizes that usually come with your clothing purchase…you simply wear the HUD, select your size and wear the item once it is delivered to you.  Once you are finished wearing the outfit, you can simply delete it…and choose a new one from the HUD next time you want to wear the outfit.

Don’t detach that HUD just yet…because most of the LIV-Glam clothing comes with a plethora of pattern or color choices that you change via the HUD.  Once you are wearing the clothing items you can simply click on the pattern/color choice you want, on the HUD, and your clothing will recolor/re-pattern itself!  Brilliant!

Now, let’s do the math…I purchased this dress for 99L, a HUGE bargain for all this sexy in just one color, BUT the HUD comes loaded with 6 dress color presets and six belt color presets….hmmmm I think I just walked away with a few free dresses!

EVERY week LIV-Glam puts out several new designs priced between 55L-99L.  Her textures and designs are fun and fabulous and the customer service is off the charts.  I had a small vendor delivery issue and it was resolved in under 5 min…not to mention I was treated incredibly well by Aisha and Maven; thank you ladies <3<3.  It just doesn’t get better than this….or does it?
~Styling~
Notice the chair now has new fabric on it…well the Air De Paris set also is delivered as a HUD…where you can either choose to have items delivered to your inventory piece by piece or as a set.  So, if you choose to have it delivered as a set…it rezzes as a linked set.  You will need to choose the chair to be delivered individually, because they come with 10 fabric pattern presets which also gives you the added versatility of mixing and matching the chair back and seat pattern.

Other Ephemera


Skin:  Belleza

Eyes:      Ikon

Eyeliner:     LpD

Prim Eyelashes:  *REDGRAVE* 

Mesh Eyelashes:  ::BB::

Beauty Marks:  [:T:]

Hands:     Slink

Hair:  .:EMO-tions:.

Shoes:    [Diktator]

Wedding Ring Set:  CHOP ZUEY COUTURE JEWELLRY

Agam Ring:     *TWISHEE*

Necklace and Earrings:     Indyra Originals

Shot at my personal studio using LUMIPro lighting and aDORKable Poses tweaked with Animare.

*Please also note that I am NOT a mainstream fashion blogger and I DO edit my pictures…please try demos before purchasing items.

~Change~

It is always around this time of year that I become more reflective.  I start shifting things around the homestead, organizing my desktop, and assessing my avatar for updates.  Usually these updates are minor, but I will admit I look drastically different from my rez day on October 5, 2008.
Xiu Sing's

Yes..this is me…fresh off Welcome Island.  Well, actually, it is about a week out…by this time I had switched out my eyes to these neon aqua ones and attempted my first “editing” project by lengthening the back of my hair. Of course, I thought I looked pretty good, but it didn’t take long to notice that there were better options to change my look.  There have obviously been a multitude of changes in skin and tweaking my shape over the years…but I have always wanted to keep a “Eurasian” look for her.  It hasn’t been easy, and there have definitely been some mis-steps with skins, but I think I’ve finally found a skin that compliments the look I have been working toward.  The Belleza Aiko (Pale) skin looks just stunning on me!
~Change~

I have absolutely adored Belleza skin for ages…but kinda gave up on it as an option because it never really fit the look I was trying to achieve.  Having said this, the ONLY place I took my husband for skin was Belleza; it is simply flawless on him.

I know Aiko was released a while ago, but, as I said, I had given up on Belleza as a skin option; I don’t think Aiko was around when I stopped trying on the Belleza demos. I am so thrilled that I decided to take a random trip back to see what Tricky Boucher had created lately!  The moment I tried the Aiko demo on…I knew I had finally found THE skin for me…THE skin that took over four years to find!  It is simply the perfect Asian skin…rendered with a deft and talented hand; crafted with an eye for the true nuances that mark the subtle beauty of ethnic skin.  Thank you Mr. Boucher…my husband and I both adore our Belleza skins! <3<3
~Change~

My outfit today starts with the Amy top and Zoey pants from /erratic/.  I can’t effuse enough about how fabulous this shirt and these pants are!  The shirt has gorgeous draping…with the front loosely tucked in…the back is untucked but lies wonderfully against the pant. It isn’t easy to wear separate mesh pieces and have them “layer” over each other without issues….but this shirt works!  The pants fit like a glove and have a buttery soft texture to them…with attention to even the smallest detail; such as the pull tab and slider on the zippers.

I finished off my look with the gorgeous Sound hair from [e].  Elikatira is having a HUGE retirement sale (HURRY back with your gorgeous newness soon!!).  It isn’t easy trying to get into the store right now…but WELL worth it…so RUN!!!  My necklace is part of the latest release set, **Attar**, from +:+WTG+:+; found at the new round of Limited Bazaar.  My Bracelet is part of the Harvest set from CHOP ZUEY COUTURE JEWELLRY, the Agam ring (no longer available), on my right hand, is from *TWISHEE*, and my adorable Beagle, named Bagel, is part of the Z Bag from ZOOBY’S.

Other Ephemera

Eyes:      Ikon

Eyeliner:     LpD

Prim Eyelashes:  *REDGRAVE* 

Mesh Eyelashes:  ::BB::

Beauty Marks:  [:T:]

Curved Wedges (Black):     [RA] RunAway

Hands:     Slink

Poses:     aDORKable Poses

Shot at my private studio using Scarlet Creative For William Weaver Art Gallery build using Lumipro lighting.

*Please also note that I am NOT a mainstream fashion blogger and I DO edit my pictures…please try demos before purchasing items.

~Snowy Evening~

I was born and raised in New England, I love lobster, chowder, the beauty of the changing seasons and the small towns of coastal Maine.  My residence of the past four years is in a city situated in the northwest corner of South Carolina.  Not only am I terribly homesick for the coast of Maine…I am also very much missing the snow.  As I sit by the open window, with the temperature nearly 70,  all I can think about is taking a lovely walk in the evening; with snow softly falling around me.
~Snowy Evening~

Come September, I shall be moving even further from my beloved Maine.  My husband and I will be traveling back to Tennessee; to be closer to our family.  So, for now, my longing to take a walk through the snow at twilight is only a click away…on the many beautifully landscaped sims of SL.  Tonight, I strolled around the gorgeous sims of Winterfell.  An enchanting place to wander and enjoy quiet reflection.

I leave you with the words of the inimitable Robert Frost.

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

The Details

Clothing:

Black Fur Bolero and Hat:    Eshi Otawara

Poet Shirt II (Black:)     ~Sassy!~

Memoire’ Pencil Skirt (Pearl/Black):     Indyra Originals

Curved Wedges (Black):     [RA] RunAway

Midnight Sheer back seam Stockings:  -CG- ChronoSlap Galaxy

Accessories:

Tabula Rasa Necklace and Earrings:    CHOP ZUEY COUTURE JEWELLERY

Kismet Wedding Set:     CHOP ZUEY COUTURE JEWELLERY

Hapa Bangles (Bronze):     Indyra Originals

Avatar:

Skin:     Glam Affair -Jadis- Natural 09(a)

Eyes:     Ikon Eternal Eyes (Black/Large)

Hair:     booN DES423 Hair Black with booN Black Hairbase

Hands:     Slink Mesh rigged hands Elegant.

Eyeliner:     LpD  Prim Eyeliner (black)

Prim Eyelashes:  *REDGRAVE* Eyelashes- 11-Showgirl

Mesh Eyelashes:  ::BB:: (Beetlebones) Mesh Lashes V.01 (SLEB Black)

Beauty Marks:  [:T:] Beauty Marks tattoo layers (layer option 2) [:Tuli:]

Poses:     aDORKable Poses Sleek Dork Pack

Shot on location at Winterfell, Anodyne using LumiPro V3.2 and edited using PicMonkey (Royal Pack Edition).

Me and my Zibska shadow…

I just scored this fabulous Plaisance dress from Zibska~Jewelry, Roots & Couture!  It was really tough to decide which outfit to purchase, because Zibska has some really creative…or, as she aptly describes it, punk nouveau designs.
Me and my shadow...
I absolutely love the geometric, three dimensional, hollow boxes with their gray scale harlequin design.  It makes me think…art and fashion meet science…just brilliant!  (click through the pics to see the detail of the dress)

I chose to accessorize the dress with the ethereal Glam Affair Roza Unamed skin, the fashion forward Just Design Mesh Creations Deviant Shoes, Tuty’s LIMBO Short Wet Hairstyle, and Mime Eyes from Dirty Cute-Ugly Duck (store is empty and eyes not currently available).
Me and my shadow...
William Weaver’s build 002 served as a perfect backdrop for the shoot and The Apple Spice Fighting Gravity Poses from Apple Spice, cStar Limited and AnTi-Social highlight the fabulous quirkiness of this dress.
Me and my shadow...I’ve been visiting the Lumipro blogspot to learn more about how to get the best usage out of my Lumipro HUD from Stefan Buscaylet.  So, on this shoot, I kept fiddling with the lights and found a way to make the shadows pop and become part of the focal point of the pics.

I know they aren’t perfect and I broke the rules…but I had a blast composing and taking the pics. My biggest disappointment with them is knowing how much I really need to learn more about using layering/masks so that I can get a better color balance to the pics.  The skin is wayyyy to bright here…despite adjusting the intensity, fall off, radius and color of the Lumipro lamp.

It’s all part of the journey and staying captivated.

The Other Details

Hands:     Slink Mesh rigged hands Elegant.

Eyeliner:     LpD  Prim Eyeliner (black)

Prim Eyelashes:  *REDGRAVE* Eyelashes- 11-Showgirl

Mesh Eyelashes:  ::BB:: (Beetlebones) Mesh Lashes V.01 (SLEB Black)

Beauty Marks:  [:T:] Beauty Marks tattoo layers (layer option 2) [:Tuli:]

Teeth:     PXL creations [ PXL ] OpenMouth PRO with HUD

Lips:     .:Glamorize:. Rival Black Combo Makeup

Foppish in France…

Just a quickie today.  I am a halfhearted hunt person…there are very few that I will actually finish; I honestly just don’t have the time or patience for most of them.  That said, I did manage to score a few items at a few of the hunts that are currently in progress.
~Foppish in France~I mashed up two dresses from two hunts and two different stores.  The primary dress I used was the black leather dress; which is the hunt prize from Foppish for the Pimp My Hunters Hunt (look for the pink hat).  Which is fabulous all by itself…but I wanted to gussy it up a bit so I layered it over the *Dawson* dress; the hunt prize from StormCrow Designs for the WomanStuff Hunt (look for the pink mesh tshirt).  I know you can’t really see anything of the Dawson dress except for the fantastic feather flounce…but trust me, it is a head-turning dress; which comes with a matching feather boa.
test niran's_024PM
The skin is also a hunt item from Glam Affair for the WomenStuff Hunt, the clutch is a group gift from COCO DESIGNS, the hair is the latest group gift (Iris/Mahogany) from ChiChickie and the shoes are Venezia from Similar Quality Italian Ladies Shoes (NOT free).

The Other Details

Hands:     Slink Mesh rigged hands Elegant.

Eyes:  Curio Tragic Eyes, Neptune (Large/Shine) (Prim eyes) Sadly not available at this time…HURRY back PLEASE Gala! <3<3

Eyeliner:     LpD  Prim Eyeliner (black)

Prim Eyelashes:  *REDGRAVE* Eyelashes- 11-Showgirl

Mesh Eyelashes:  ::BB:: (Beetlebones) Mesh Lashes V.01 (SLEB Black)

Beauty Marks:  [:T:] Beauty Marks tattoo layers (layer option 2) [:Tuli:]

Teeth: KIKI (Came with a skin I bought from them)

Poses:  Diesel Works Poses and Animations …Olivia pose pack (group gift)

First pic shot on location at Chateau de Versailles2 and the second pic was shot on location at FRANCE ~~Paris Eiffel~~Paris 1900

Learning as I go…

It’s been a few days since I posted because I was having major issues with trying to take high rez snaps in Firestorm…for almost a week.  I have no idea what the issue was and I tried the several suggestions that came via the SLU forums…to no avail.  So after the last major freeze then crash, while trying to enable shadows, I switched over to Niran’s Viewer.  I’d heard it was excellent for SL photography.  Still not sure about that…as it is a HUGE learning curve just trying to acquaint myself with the viewer set-up. (AND the sky preset windlight choices are far fewer in Niran’s).  For now I am bouncing between the two hoping to either resolve the love-hate relationship my video card is having with FS or to fully commit to Niran’s.

Anyway, on Monday I had shots (taken in Niran’s) all ready to post for a mash-up dress I’d composed out of two hunt items…but I couldn’t make up my mind which shots to edit/use and finally decided 99% of them were pure crap shots.  Soooo I decided to just start with editing the head shot I took to show the Glam Affair skin (from the WomenStuff Hunt) and the new group gift ChiChickie Iris hair.

This is a the first crop of the raw capture:
test niran's_006PM4

One thing led to another and this post morphed into showing the process and progress of how I am learning to edit my SL photography.  Let me qualify now…I KNOW I am NOT the best photographer…I KNOW I have a LOT to learn…and I KNOW that I make a lot of mistakes.  BUT, through all the mistakes, frustration, lack of editing software skills and pretty much self-teaching…I am enjoying discovering how I can approach SL photography in my own unique way.

First draft of editing…cropped it a bit tighter, rebuilt the crappy nose and tried to maintain the original texture of the skin:
test niran's_006PM3

I wasn’t quite satisfied with the end result…I’d messed up the lovely texture of the skin while trying to fix a few blemishes…which left it splotchy looking. I struggled with going further in editing the face.  After all, there is a point at which the skin no longer looks like the one you will buy.  If I were a fashion photographer and were highlighting the skin for you to run out and grab…I’d leave it as unedited as possible.  BUT, I am NOT a fashion blogger/photographer…I am just someone in SL who enjoys fashion, shopping, photography, art and exploring new places. So I have more creative leeway when it comes to how much I can edit my pics.

My “finished” pic:
Learning as I go...
It took me several hours to edit this pic (on and off…a girl has to sleep eventually)…and I’m sure that someone with mad PS skills could have done it in only minutes.  I did all the editing for this photo in Picmonkey…where I hunt and peck for things…make a LOT of mistakes and learn a great deal from those mistakes.  I break a lot of rules (mostly because I don’t know that I have until I do)…I don’t own PS (That’s a LOT of cash to lay out!), and my skills with Gimp are extremely limited (I can open it…does that count for anything?). I ask as many questions as I can (without trying to be a pest), take classes at Builders Brewery and study other SL photographers work.

In the end…EVERYTHING is open to individual interpretation, we all learn on our own curve and there is usually always more than one way to approach anything in life…including photography and editing.  I’ll continue to make mistakes to learn from and I welcome any help/constructive advice someone takes the time to give me.

Here are several resources that I tap into to try to continue to add new skills, learn and grow:

  • Builder’s Brewery often has excellent classes on photography from beginner to intermediate…check the schedule (online or inworld) for times and dates.
  • Youtube (just enter the search term for the tutorial you are interested in…e.g. “Photo Shop Tutorials”)
  • Strawberry Singh has fantastic tutorials on SL photography. I don’t know her personally, but I am thankful for her kind spirit in sharing what she does.  Study her work…she is fantastic!
  • Cajsa Lilliehook, from It’s Only Fashion, is very knowledgeable in fashion,  photography, blogging and marketing.  She generously shares that knowledge with her readers on the Tutorials & PSAs tab.
  • I belong to over 90 Flickr photography and fashion groups; where I can study fabulous SL photography and post my work for feedback.  If you go to my page, you will find a list of the groups I belong to.  Click on the group link to check it out and to join the group.  While you’re on my page…check out the people who are on my contact list…I am constantly adding people to that list…people who’s amazing work I have noticed and want to follow.  I add them as a contact so I can be alerted when they post new work.
  • In-world I have truly wonderful artist friends who patiently answer my questions.  I also attend in-world art exhibits; to study the work and to support the hardworking artists.
  • Finally, I recently became actively involved, in the SL art community, by organizing/hosting the upcoming Autumn Art Walk that will be running from November 17-Dec 15 at The Beguiled Art Gallery & Studio.

Art and Life are fleeting…stay captivated!  <3<3

Eyes:  Curio Tragic Eyes, Neptune (Large/Shine) (Prim eyes) Sadly not available at this time…HURRY back PLEASE Gala! <3<3

Eyeliner:     LpD  Prim Eyeliner (black)

Prim Eyelashes:  *REDGRAVE* Eyelashes- 11-Showgirl

Mesh Eyelashes:  ::BB:: (Beetlebones) Mesh Lashes V.01 (SLEB Black)

Beauty Marks:  [:T:] Beauty Marks tattoo layers (layer option 2) [:Tuli:]

Teeth: KIKI (Came with a skin I bought from them)

~Pin-Up~

Shhhhhhhh…I’ve got a secret fetish…
Pin-Up~Peek
Well, not so secret really…anyone who knows me knows how much I love Pin-Up art.  I grew up loving black and white movies, jazz, old magazines and pin-up art.  So, I get very excited when I come across a creator in SL who enjoys designing vintage and pin-up clothing and accessories.
Pin-Up_024PMPeek

Last summer I was searching for a mesh bikini and stumbled across an adorable one at this store, on the marketplace, called Etchaflesh.  I liked the bikini so much, I wrote a review about it.  Several days later, I received a special edition corset, as a thank you for the review…and I was officially hooked on Shaodie’s designs.  She manages to fuse goth, pin-up and a bit of rockabilly into her own unique interpretations.  One of the things I love about her work is that she doesn’t overlook the little details that make clothing standout; like the corset lacing on the back of this high-waisted pin-up skirt..  I like the dark edge to her designs, but then she also has some really gorgeous pink corsets; there is something for everyone.
Peek

I decided to pair the skirt with back-seam stockings and top from a 50’s Tintable set that I purchased from Reasonable Desires…a few years ago. The oh-so-fantastic pin-up Jean hair from .:EMO-tions:., and the Coqueta Doll (pink/black) platforms from KIKI Designs. Finishing touches…Severine Earrings from Zibska, Prim eyeliner from LpD and mesh hands from SLink.

The Details

Skirt:   Etchaflesh  Gothsweet Pin-Up Skirt

Top & Stockings:    Reasonable Desires  50’s Tintable lingerie set.

Hair:  .:EMO-tions:.  *Jean* (black)

Shoes:     KIKI Designs  Coqueta Doll (Black & Pink) mesh

Earrings:     ZIBSKA Severine earrings in Gold (Gift from Hair Fair)

Skin:  Glam Affair – Jadis – Natural Clean(a)

Eyes:  [Curio] Tragic Eyes – Fatpack (Purples and Blues) Watercolor Shine Large (Prim eyes) Not currently available.

Eyeliner:     LpD  Prim Eyeliner (black)

Prim Eyelashes:  *REDGRAVE* Eyelashes- 11-Showgirl

Mesh Eyelashes:  ::BB:: (Beetlebones) Mesh Lashes V.01 (SLEB Black)

Beauty Marks:  [:T:] Beauty Marks tattoo layers (layer option 2) [:Tuli:]

Hands:     Slink Mesh rigged hands Elegant, pointing and relaxed.

Poses & Props:     {what next} Vintage Dressing Screen and Stool Modelling Props (both loaded with pposes)

Shot at: ~Ephemera Studio~

Dog:     Zooby Beagle (His name is Bagel :))