Friday, September 16, 2011

To the Nines

more often than not when i'm building or out shopping my doll's dressed in every day street wear. nothing flashy or fancy. i really don't need any more distractions from the tasks at hand. let's just say i'm doing my very best to be unobtrusive. it's so hard to blend in with all the beautiful people, but i do try. and who really needs all the paparazzi pushing and shoving my adoring fans aside just so they can snap their less than flattering shots. please, you can approach me politely, but; i'll have to give you my agent's number.

of course, when i do jazz up Ms Mayne for those odd occasions that deserve dressing to the nines pixivor Allen's my goto girl. rewarding myself, and the countless onlookers, with miles of extra feminine flowing fabric brings a lightness to my stride. feeling the breezy silky flexiprims gently wisp upon my long lovely legs allows a pleasureful exhuberance far too absent from my ordinary life.

gown: LADY CHOCOLAT, 690L$, pixivor Allen, alaFolie
skin: Enchant, 350L$, Amesha Jewell, Heartsick
hair: WhiteLies Faith Midnyte, no longer available, Zyrra Falcone, Panache
jewelry: EnCore Mayne, BEHOLD* Designs

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


well, that's interesting.

i've been fiddling with the basic SL avatar mesh inside Blender to see how much finesse i can put to the Lab's vertices. i've actually been able to bring in some weighted meshes with the configuration i've cobbled together. i wish i could thank someone for their help, unfortunately, the present tutorials out there are so advanced that it just caused more confusion. simple? i think Gaia Clary's site has helped me the most. i'm using Domino Maramba's weighted avatar as a starting point. getting his avatar to the point where anything you build onto it is HELL and i'm not going to dare tell you how i got it right...if it is. however you do it, you'll have NOTHING but love for what you've done. keep at it.

the rough avatar's foundation has never been very attractive to my eye, no matter how well the skinners can smudge over the issues, the concave chest and protruding back is really really something you'd want someone not to notice. maybe i shouldn't have told you?

nonetheless, i thought i could tweak the vertices on the back so the hump was somewhat diminished. it's looking pretty nice so far. i'll send up a pic soon as i can give you an A-B comparison. getting the lighting just right so it illustrates what's been done is quite a hassle. every single point inworld seems to be lit distinctly. you'll see. the backbone's pretty close to normal now. anything's better than what the Lab did. i'm happy with what i've done so far. oh, i also found that a 1024 texture works well on the basic avatar mesh. this could be fun!

anywho, i pulled a few of the vertices at the arm seams and was super suprised that there were duplicates overlaying one another. hmmm, is that why it's so damned predominant when you put a texture onto it? i wonder. since i remembered Gaia's video tutorial for removing doubles i thought i'd give that a try. yikes, 342 extra vertices. sure hope i can still bring it inworld now. stay tuned.

Double Vertices on SeamDoubles Removed

yup, works as expected. sweet.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Serious Design

two new examples from some well known SL designers have hit the grid.

Siddean Munro's crafted her second mesh item since her gift last week. she's applied her expert texturing and modeling skills to bring us the sexiest, most sensuously formed polygons, with the most exceptionally weighted rigging there is. i'll suspend gushing any more superlatives, you'll get a sugar high. but really! putting it all together, as Siddean has, is no small feat. and, what better a choice to show off the new mesh rigging technology than skin-tight thigh high boots?

anyone who's tried the triple piece sculptie attachments for their thigh high dreams have finally nothing to be embarrassed about. the embedded youtube clip shows just how sinuously these SLink boots move (was that another superlative? oh god, i can't stop!). try her DEMO, it's free. 700L$ to buy.

Cattiva Vita of CheerNo is the second designer bringing a knit textured mesh dress with half sleeves to the grid. remarkable to this design within the mesh field is its integrated sleeves. you can get Cattiva Vita's dress for 75L$ at My Second Wardrobe's little shop. i wasn't happy with the deformation of the bodice around the neckline, both front and back. upper body movement seemed to accentuate the horrible underlying structure of the Lab's avatar mesh. not to worry, someone's working on a finer avatar mesh we can form fit our clothing to. i'm sure. you can only do so much. i'm not sure Cattiva's defining weights could improve this condition.

another thing i noticed as a criticism on both designer's samples were their alpha layers. i'm wondering if there could be more flesh showing inside the designs. maybe it's just me but i like to super zoom onto all these delectable treats. having a transparent section of the body where the design meets the flesh is a bit of a frown. there's plenty of volume for movement with Cattiva's dress, not so much with Siddean's since they're designed to simulate skin tight leather. it's a bit of a trade off as to whether the avatar mesh will poke through when you allow for less transparency. picky picky picky. i know. :-)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

First to Market

they're not the prettiest boots inworld but they're the first i've come across that actually integrate mesh objects with avatar rigging. it's kinda complicated but you can generally categorize mesh into two types. 1.) static, 2.) rigged.

rigged is where it's at. if it's done right you can have your rigged clothing meshes morph along with the built-in skeleton. that means your cuffs for your shorts won't cut into your body when your pose changes, sleeves move along with your arms, and boots can move naturally when your ankles bend! the implications are mind boggling. unfortunately, the technical complexities can be murderous and/or completely frustrating .

static, as is evidenced by LeLutka's newest shoes, are NOT rigged. they're pretty much worn just like old school sculpties but utilizing mesh as the object's form. being that the new mesh format allows for far less restrictions on polygon stuctures and textures, they are superb fashion accessories. nonetheless, they don't move like rigged boots CAN.

GutterBlood Spoonhammer's boots, being sold at Orchid Zenovka's DECO store, are the first example of rigged mesh boots i've seen. i've been waiting/watching for someone (anyone) to bring some more rigged clothing examples to the world. i've been pouring over the feeds, Searching inworld, and filtering for them in the Marketplace, all for naut. hell, i've even dusted off my old Blender to try my unsteady hand. i can see just how difficult bringing rigged mesh to market is. whoever can balance the mesh design, texture, and weight painting (the method used to simulate how the mesh moves with the skeleton) is gonna make a pile of moola.

as it is with GutterBlood's design, and i'm no expert, his polygon structure's a bit too grossly configured for the polygons involved in the morphing to adequately stretch and strain naturally. i'm assuming with a little more refinement to these areas his samples can develop into a great line. the foot shape with such a high platform is also problematic. using the one GutterBlood designed puts the ankle joint too far away and more of the calf morphs than appears he intended. when you don't wear any foot shape it bends far more naturally. of course, without the foot shape you sink into the prim floors. :( oh well, it's Second Life after all and we're not ALL perfect.

rigged mesh movement video clip

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