Wasted work

I had to sculpt my avatar’s head all over again using Blender. Dang it!

The sculptured prim

Now to explain why I had to do this, let me teach you a very important thing about a new kind of basic construction shape used in Second Life called the sculpted prim. “Prim”, incidentally, is short for “primitive”, another name for the basic construction shapes used to build everything in SL.

Sculpted prims are created in a 3D modeling program such as the open-source Blender 3D and uploaded to SL. I’m not quite familiar with the process, but there’s supposed to be a command there that imposes the sculpted prim’s shape onto a regular primitive.

In order to be uploadable to SL, a sculptured prim must have a hole in the top and bottom, and a well-defined seam down the back, so the program can open it out flat. Somehow, SL is able to remember the prim’s original shape. My previous head for Skye had already gotten too sophisticated for that.

Pane in the . . . head

Now what about the flips of long fur that occur over the forehead and on either side of the head? I think those are best accomplished by painting those on transparent panes and sticking them into the avatar’s head at odd angles. Of course I don’t quite know how hair is accomplished in SL, there are probably better ways of doing it, but that’s my two cents.

Reverse engineering

I bought an avatar of Gruffi Gummi of Disney’s Adventures of the Gummi Bears, thinking that with a little tweaking of the color, I might be able to use most of Gruffi’s body for Skye. Unfortunately, this avatar came no copy, no modify. But I can still reverse engineer his paws and feet.

I can see where a guy like me can get sucked into Second Life. Just getting my av to a certain look involves quite a bit of planning and execution. It’s a fascinating process, and I can’t wait to see it all the way through.

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