SL Photography

Cycling with Eliza

A long, long, looooooong time ago I met a rather lovely person in Oak Grove, Eliza Janus. She was sweet, funny and friendly at a time when life in Murray, my home next to Oak Grove, was anything but. Over the years we’ve stayed in touch and lately she’s been very busy gathering her friends about her, setting up groups in-world as well in twitter & flickr. A few weeks back I received a message from her asking if I could spare five minutes for a photo and as one who often drops such requests on my friends how could I say no? I TPed over and was met with an idylic scene in which Eliza was sat on a bike – I hoped on, set my emote to charming smile No. 8 and snapped away!
Eliza_007

Eliza_005

Take a look at Eliza’s version, as well as her other friends joining her on her bike, on her flickr stream here.

Me, but BlipVerted!

Thanks to Kumi for pointing this out to me – Pummelvision will squash your flickr, tumblr (what the bugger happened to all the ‘e’s? on the web?) or facebook photos and give you a super-fast film thingie like this…

Here are my friends’ vids:
Kumi: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0IjrtXPCA0s&feature=player_embedded
Osprey: http://www.atomic-raygun.com/2010/12/profoundly-boring-everyone-was-doing-it.html
Enjah: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnEFAM_qCB8&feature=player_embedded

Nightfall in St Helens…

I’ve been working hard over at my log cabin, mainly constructing the parts for a wooden lathe, but I’m never too busy to enjoy a sunset like this…
Steelhead sunset_001

And who wouldn’t love sitting out on a night like this…
St Helens by moonlight_001

I knew I was right coming out here, even the Scamps have stopped exploring the forest and disturbing me. All is peace.

EDIT (3rd Nov 10): I took the two pictures above and wrote this short post waaaaay back in June or July, shortly before SL’s many glitches pissed me right off and I quit blogging for a while to let the blood pressure drop again. I re-scheduled it for 2011 meaning to post it once I calmed down, but once I had calmed down I got stuck into the Steal Head story. Anyhoo, now I’m getting more involved in St Helens again it is time to post this – especially as I’ve just moved the log cabin and replaced it with a small sawmill & log flume!
HBA Saw Mill_009

Mr Creighton’s Air Tours of Steelhead and Environs.

Way back in mid May I dropped by my surgery in Shamian Alley and bumped into a most charming new resident of our fair city (by which I mean Steelhead, obviously), one Mr Paul Creighton.
Meeting Paul Creighton_001

Mr Creighton was in the process of moving into the city (at the time I met him he was looking at a plot in Shanghai, but by June he had settled in Port Harbour, very close to where the old Mason lab blew up) and was planning to give air tours of the surrounding countryside and city blocks to anyone interested. I was honoured to be offered a test flight in his airship and we had a grand time touring all six Steelhead regions (although I’ll confess to boring him rigid with my history of the city and endless list of who lived where and what buildings used to be there and what places blew up or burnt down or were attacked by demons and blew up before burning down, etc.). I was having a terrible time staying in-world that weekend but I managed to hold on long enough to get a few snapshots and I present them below. In the meantime, should anyone be interested in contacting Paul about a tour (or attending one of his weekly flying tea parties) please do drop him a line and tell him Dr Beck sent you 🙂 You can also find him on the Steelhead Ning where his is part of the Airship group. Now, what about these pictures I hear you cry…

This is Paul’s smaller airship (pictures of his larger one, his luxury yacht Heimdall, to follow in another post)
Paul's Airship_001

Heading out over the slums…
Paul's Airship_002

And away from the poverty…
Paul's Airship_004

Through the city…
Paul's Airship_007

Past Nish’s Butterfly House to be
Paul's Airship_010

Past Mt Hood and towards St Helens…
Paul's Airship_011

And over some ugly old shack I think I’ve seen before 😉
Paul's Airship_012

Before landing in the Shanghai plot he was considering making his own at the time.
Paul's Airship_014

Steelhead Public Library’s Photography Exhibition

In between running up posters protesting about New Babbage’s illegal acts in Steelhead and brooding over the Tong bastards who broke into my surgery, I decided to take a trip over to the public library in Capital City and conduct some research into the fever that was spreading through the northern slums.
Steelhead Public Library Photography Exhibiton_006

When I arrived I was pleasantly surprised to see that the library patrons had organised an exhibition on the history of that most wonderous of inventions, photography!
Steelhead Public Library Photography Exhibiton_005

Almost the whole of the lower floor had been given over to informative displays and examples showing the evolution of this exciting science…
Steelhead Public Library Photography Exhibiton_001

Steelhead Public Library Photography Exhibiton_002 Steelhead Public Library Photography Exhibiton_004

Steelhead Public Library Photography Exhibiton_003

I recommend you head over to the library and take in this superb display – you can find it in Capital City here.

The campest photo I’ve EVER taken!

HBA lays a magic egg_001

Get yourself over to Kapor, sit on the balloon-eggs and see if you can out-camp me. Mari failed!

Destroying the Noyo Mall! Redux!

Remember the half-assed job the work-shy fops at Antfarm & Quinn did destroying the big old empty mall in Noyo? Well their efforts, whilst a bit rubbish, did have the effect of mobilising a small gang of Kahruvel’s friends (and some rabid ducks!) in to action!

Osprey pulled in some favours to call a meteor shower…
Nuking the Noyo Mall

Ilia brought a huge hammer!
Nuking the Noyo Mall

Kumi set some ravenous racing snails on the whole mess…
Nuking the Noyo Mall

Mari brought her construction kit (although I think a meteor smasherated her jackhammer!)
Nuking the Noyo Mall

Enjah let off what I think was some Mickey Mouse ordinance…
Nuking the Noyo Mall

Someone (no one knows who but I heard it was a handsome gazelle-like chap with horns and a rakish smile) crashed a wee UFO into the roof…
Nuking the Noyo Mall

But leave it up to me to bring a ruddy great 50megaton nuke to the party!
Nuking the Noyo Mall

Nuking the Noyo Mall

Nuking the Noyo Mall

Even the Deadly Ducks got involved!

So, did all our efforts bring the rancid old structure crashing to the ground? Did it bugger! The bloody thing was totally unscathed and mocked us with its still-standing-ness. Damn.

Edit: Salazar has managed to delete the mall at last – he says that all our efforts must have weakened it. Yay! Go us!

Mutations: Chapter 1 – Seeking Isolation.

Far from the taunts and the stares of Steelhead I hauled my canoe onto the riverbank that led up past an icy stream to the snow-laden forest that was my new home. I stood in the early morning chill and listened… nothing… pure silence.
Steelhead St Helens

Around me nature was slumbering under winter’s blanket, even the river seemed sleepy and slow as it gurgled past, innocently hiding the fact it was deeper and colder than hell itself.
Steelhead St Helens

It was a steep climb up into the forest, the trees creaking under their snowy burden as I passed beneath them. I spotted the yawning maw of a cave hidden in the gloom and made note to be on the look out for curious and hungry bears come spring.
Steelhead St Helens

A sudden roar of steam had me ducking for cover! It seems my new home had its own central heating system in the form of a geyser that erupted every fourteen minutes or so in a most impressive manner!
Steelhead St Helens

Looking down and back to my landing spot I knew I had made the right decision in coming here. Yes Beck was worried, but if not what the doctor had ordered then this glorious isolation was what the patient needed, I reasoned. Since I had entered this world I hadn’t for one moment been alone. The Elemental severed my connection with my creator, the fire swallowed up the Elemental and his damn backpack, and Shade had connected directly with my mind during The Erase. Since then I had managed to have only one voice in my head and I liked it that way.
Steelhead St Helens

I pitched camp by the water and lit a fire to boil some tea and warm what was left of me. Canvas would do for now, but I wanted more than that. I looked first at the trees high above me and wondered how many I’d need to build a cabin. Then staring across the river to Mara Razor’s mill, I began to wonder about approaching her for regular supplies in order that I wouldn’t have to venture into town.
Steelhead St Helens

My tea finished I moved over to the stream to wash my cup. Under the silent gaze of St Helens I gazed at the stranger staring back at me from the water and drew up my plans never to see a living soul again. After all, who in Steelhead wanted to see this walk amongst them?
Steelhead St Helens: Burnt HBA Reflection

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To be continued…

All the “Mutations” posts can be read here.

Links to other blogs and stories:
1) This tale follows on directly from Far From Home.

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A workaround for the snapshot to postcard issue

I came into SL last night to help Enjah out with the 2010 show – it was good to be back, but the first hour was still a minefield of annoying techy issues that pissed me right off, but I remained calm and did not re-spit my dummy out and in the end I had a good night.

Along the way I got an IM from Mari who told me about Torley’s workaround for the snapshot issue that had pissed me off so royally the week before. The issue is that I couldn’t send snapshots via email anymore (saving to disk did work but as I don’t use that system it’s not an idea alternative for me, more an emergency plan B). It turned out this is one of those ancient issues that had rumbled on in the Jira for a while but seems to have become much worse in the latest server roll out. Torley suggests reducing the size of your snapshot (he explains more here in the Jira). For a few months I’ve been taking my shots at 2880 x 1618 & 80% quality giving me a file size of around 500Kb to 1Mb (1Mb being the cut off limit when emailing out as I do – I email out to Snapzilla and that in turn emails the shot to Flickr – I’ve edited the postcard XML file so it automatically has the correct email address in the To: field). This *had* been working fine but on Torley’s suggestion I dropped the size to 1440 x 809 & 80% quality (giving me a file size of 300Kb to 500Kb) and it worked again.

Now obviously the fact that I should be able too send the larger shots (and until two weeks ago could!) means that this is only a workaround for an error I really hope the Linden’s fix toot sweet, but at least it means I (and you if you have been similarly blighted) can send postcards again! TY Mari & Torley 🙂

I’m dropping SL for a bit.

I’m not leaving. I’m just not enjoying my time in-world right now so I’m taking a holiday. Chief annoyance is the inability to take snapshots (I think it’s this error on the Jira). I don’t build or script in SL, I write stories and take pictures. Work is so busy I don’t have the time or energy for the former and SL is so fucking borked I can’t do the later so what is the point of being there? When I can talk to my friends via email & twitter, etc. then the reason I use SL is for a creative outlet, and SL itself won’t let me. I’m off to play simple pleasure hit games like Bioshock & Left 4 Dead until someone fixes SL. If you want me, you know how to get me.