Sunday, March 29, 2009

#1 Tryptofaa Sands Tornado

Bryn Oh's favorites

#11 Madcow Cosmos - unfinished build

Over the past little while I have been posting my favorite builds in Second Life. Someone had said to me recently that their location gets more traffic than some of the ones on my list. That's nice... but you see this is a list of things I like. Its not meant to be a definitive list of any sort beyond a list of Bryn Oh's favorite builds. I should also mention that there are a great many artists in second life who didn't have a specific thing make the list, but have an impressive overall body of work. Had I tweaked the list to "my favorite creators in sl" it would have easily made the list quite different.

I met Tryptofaa Sands quite a while ago at Rezzable sandbox (when Rezzable had one). We chatted for a bit then I built a giant castle wall. We then both built a catapult and began to launch our avatars at it while sitting on a cannonball. This is how people make friends in second life. Another way to make friends is to suck them up in a Tornado. This is exactly what happened the next time I went to Rezzable Sandbox. He chased me down and sucked me up. This was one of those moments where I thought to myself "wow I didn't realize you could do this in sl". I have only spoken to Tryptofaa a dozen times since then but the Tornado never left my mind.

Why did the Tornado get #1 on my list? The main reason is that his tornado incorporates most of what second life offers a builder to use. Let me describe all the elements Tryptofaa put into this build. The Tornado itself is a nice build all grey and twisty as we would expect, but he has added an expanding black storm cloud which spreads out from the top. He has also built a hud for the user. It has options such as particle rain or snow. Some nice lightning effects as well as controls as to whether you wish it to have the ability to suck people up. It also has a setting where it spews forth debris. The debris is quite funny as it has everything from telephone poles to cows shoot out of it. So just as it is you have a tornado with special effects. A nice build just like this. However, he has also added scripts which allow you to build a structure and script it so that it will be affected by the tornado. In the machinima above the structure is one I built. It has scripts in each prim which tell it to do a variety of things in relation to the Tornado.
So all together we have a finely crafted build. A build that interacts with other avatars. A build that allows the owner to create something which will be affected by the tornado. And a build that all allows you to constantly think up new ideas for ways to use it. For other pieces on the list I have connected artistic values to them to describe why I liked them. Everything from colour, form and composition. This build doesn't win for any of these reasons. It wins because it is a build for second life. Sl doesn't necessarily need the same dialogue as the real world to succeed.

Lately there has been some real life interest in jpegs on a prim. Reporters come to second life not really understanding it and are impressed by real life artists who are using second life to market their work. That's fine, I have nothing against people who try to market their real life work in second life. In fact its a great idea. Surviving as an artist is very hard so do whatever it takes. Having said this, I have to say that if second life has the potential to be the next frontier in art, it will not be by jpegs on a prim. There are a handful of embedded journalists in second life who have the means to promote second life fringe art. Yet we have real life journalists make an account, attach their prim hair firmly to their arse and write a surface article. We need people to showcase the revolutionary Art being created here. We can't just rely on NPIRL and Brooklyn is Watching. They work tirelessly at this but we now need the readers and residents to do their part. And remember, the average resident knows far more about second life than a reporter wandering in. A reporter looks for stairs to get to the second level of a building. So if you agree with me then please promote those builders on my list or those you think should be on my list.

Oh and if you would like your own Tornado to make friends with then go to Tryptofaas store

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