Saturday, October 10, 2015

Television in Second Life

Bart: Dad, what’s the point of this story?

Homer: I like stories

The Simpsons



          No, I don’t mean watching TV in Second Life (SL)!

          (Although, I’m sure some do it!)

          I mean the builds created in SL based on Real Life (RL) TV shows.

          Thanks to my good friends at First UCC , I’ve met a talented and gifted builder inworld who recreates some of the world’s most memorable TV shows in SL. 

          (Significant Other says they only let me hang around so that they can have good material for their sermons.  Personally, I like to think it’s because they feel no one is beyond redemption and they enjoy a challenge.) 

          Lora Chadbourne is the builder of whom I speak. 

          I first met Lora when I interviewed her for my story about the Garden Tomb in the Holy Land now residing at First UCC. 

          Recently, I met her and her new husband, Mazz, in front of her latest build inworld for another interview. 

          (Yep, folks are still getting married in SL!)

          This latest project of Lora’s is nothing less than a faithful recreation of the Simpsons’
home from Springfield! 

          Lora has been inworld for nearly ten years and began building after about six months.  She says the learning curve was very steep so it took her a while to sort things out.

          Her work includes different creations in many genres, some historical, most fictional. 

          Lora’s first major project was an Apollo lunar module, which was on display at the International Spaceflight Museum.

She’s done builds of the Alamo, which was for the University of Texas and is still available for visiting (And has made the SL Destination Guide), and of Central Park with a Manhattan surrounding of apartment buildings and shops. 

There is a build of the Mayflower, which will be on display at a friend's sim through Thanksgiving. 

Other builds have included locations from Tron, Star Trek, Lost in Space, Doctor Who, and other science fiction properties.  (BTW there will be several more stories coming along in this blog about Lora’s work.  The Mayflower and Central Park will happen this year.  Next year will start with the Alamo and watch out for a special story on the works of Irwin Allen in SL!)

Lora likes to create, it's an outlet for her and she usually build things that strike her fancy.

(Hey, isn’t this what SL is all about?)

She researches her subjects then starts in and makes a lot of changes along the way! 

Now, for a tour of the house itself!

Standing outside, I’m impressed immediately but the cartoonish and colorful effects that Lora has achieved.

This is not one of those simple polygon piles (I may have invented a new term here!) that one comes across so frequently inworld. 

Homer and Marge are almost expected to appear in the doorway at any moment. 

Entering the residence, I’m in the foyer with the living room to my left and the dining
room to my right. 

In front of me are the stairs to the second floor.  (Or the first floor for the benefit of my European friends!)

At the back of the house is the kitchen, the playroom, and the family room.

(They seem to have a lot of leisure time in Springfield!)

There is also a half bath on the ground floor.

A side door opens into the garage. 

Upstairs are Homer’s and Marge’s master bedroom with its own bath room; Bart’s and Lisa’s bedrooms, Maggie’s nursery, and another bathroom.

All the rooms are fully furnished and there is also plenty of closet space! 

The outside grounds are well maintained and in line with what’s seen on the show.

The backyard has plenty of room for Santa’s Little Helper and Snowball to run around in. 

Overall, the effect is very realistic and Lora gives visitors the sense of actually being in the show and no in SL. 

I ask Lora about her subject choice and how she built it.

She replies that she loves the Simpsons and just wanted to see if she could do it. 

The house was tricky because, since the show is animated, the writers take a lot of liberties, she explains.  Different episodes have its rooms in different places inside the house, and they add rooms that were never there.

(Does anyone remember the world’s longest living room from The Flintstones?)

So Lora had to pick and choose how to present it, she used a lot of detail to add realism.

 She was also careful to include shadows and to texture things properly and realistically which contributed to the RL effect of the build. 

Lora believes she has a good eye for composition builds almost exclusively from pictures of the subject matter.

The results certainly speak for themselves!

Lora took about a month to complete this build.

In RL, Lora is a writer and graphic artist for print media and I believe she is definitely leveraging her skills! 

 Lora used mostly standard prims with a few sculpts here and there to build the Simpsons’ home, and those are made inworld using the tools that can be found on Marketplace. She did use mesh in this one and says she has only included mesh on one build so far and that to a limited extent.

At this point, wanting to be mindful of Lora’s and Mazz’s time, I ended the interview, thanking her for her candor and time, and letting them get back to their honeymoon! 

The Simpsons’ home created by Lora is a fabulous build and demonstrates what a talented builder can do in SL. 

The build will be taken down by Lora at the end of this month, October, to free up the prims for others. 

Unfortunately, I don’t have a LZ that is usable so you’re probably going to have to settle for this story!

If you’re interested in more of Lora’s work then keep an eye on this blog because I’ll be writing about all her new, and some old projects, as we go into the winter!

I’d like to thank Lora and Mazz again for meeting with me and wish them all the happiness inworld in their future lives together! 

All pictures used in this story were taken by Lora and are used with her permission.

More pictures by Lora from my visit to the build can be located on this flickr page.

As always, I’m grateful to all inworld for their kindness and time in stopping to talk with a stranger who was passing through their lives

My Twitter handle is @webspelunker.  Please feel free to follow me and I’d be happy to follow you.

I can be found on Google+ as webspelunker Ghostraven.

My flickr Photostream is located here.

On Skype I’m webspelunker Ghostraven.

I welcome feedback from readers, please either comment on my blog or e-mail me at . 

          If you would like to read about my other adventures in Second Life
please click here.

          Open roads and kind fires!

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