The Year That Was

1 Tylar Profile 8a

It is New Year’s Eve and a day to reflect on the year that has passed. For me, it has been a tumultuous year with lots of lows interspersed with a few highs. In terms of my real life I have seen so many changes that I am still attempting to process and come to terms with them. As for Second Life, it has been a better year, largely because of this blog.

And the person most responsible for it is My Cherished, Tylar. I chose to lead this post with this photo because it was largely her encouragement that led me to opening my photography business, which in turn led to this little publication that has become not just a showcase for my photographs, but also an exploration of my life in and out of Second Life. My Cherished, thank you for believing in me, standing behind me and for sharing so many of your wonderful qualities with me.

The rest of this story will be a taste of some of my favourite photos and posts. Some of them may not make a lot of sense to you; you won’t necessarily see only the best photos in terms of composition and technique. But each one of these holds a special place in my heart for one reason or another. This is going to be a long one, so if you aren’t inclined to spend a large portion of your day reminiscing with me, I wish you a happy and healthy New Year and I’ll see you on the other side.

If you are willing to stick with me, just click this link to take the plunge. Continue reading

On To New Challenges

1 ABC 30

And so it goes. Thirty days, 35 posts and a sense of completion. And a bit of sadness that we have come to the end of the iRez Avatar Blogger Challenge.

I admit to feeling a bit of trepidation when I began the iRez 30 Posts In 30 Days challenge on June 1. I wondered if I really belonged – I am a “baby blogger,” having started this blog less than six months ago. I’m not on the radar of the big-name designers or movers and shakers in Second Life. I just take pictures, add a few words and slap them on the internet. I have a few loyal followers, to whom I am eternally grateful, but I’m not in the Big Leagues of SL blogging. But I took the plunge alongside some amazing chroniclers of our virtual world. And I’ve discovered some fantastic new blogs and even more amazing people along the way.

I want to thank Strawberry Singh who has been an inspiration to me since before I started blogging myself. It was her post that drew my attention to this challenge, and although I can’t find the original post now, just check out her blog (if you haven’t already). She is not only an incredible photographer, she is amazingly generous in sharing her knowledge and encouraging other bloggers. She’s a peach among berries 😉

And I especially want to thank Vaneeesa Blaylock for putting this challenge together. For setting up the ABC Gym so each blogger had his or her own workout station. For getting us together for photos and giving us space at LEA11 to display our meme photos. And for her inexhaustible energy, wit and insight. She is an artist by profession, but what I recognise most in her is her caring, giving soul. I may never have met her had it not been for this challenge, so for if no other reason than crossing her path, I’m so happy I participated.

Yesterday, Vaneeesa pulled as many participating bloggers together for one final photo shoot. Our formal shot is the one above and includes 11 of the (at least) 29 bloggers who participated in this challenge. It was a tricky shot – group photos are a bitch! – but we all snapped away, memorialising this special group. I’m proud to have been among their numbers.

When we finished, in true Vaneeesa style, on the count of three we all dived into the water. A metaphorical baptism, sending us out into the world as members of the ABC Crossfit Gym, ready to follow our hearts, having learned something from this experience. For each blogger, it will be different lesson. But no doubt, one that will be long remembered.

1 ABC 30 Wet

And now, on to new challenges.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Companionable – Little Wonders

1 Companions

Even in Second Life, creatures form a part of our life. These little wonders become our companions, our friends, our source of laughter and joy.

I snapped this photo about a week ago while I was playing with my Kittycats. I had plopped down on this blanket, ostensibly to read, and the pose with my virtual cats reminded me so much of the behaviour of those in the corporeal world, I laughed out loud. Attention-seeking, wrapping themselves around me, rolling on top of my book to encourage a belly rub…just so much like my “real” little ball of fur that I swear I could feel the tickle of their whiskers and hear the rumble of their purring.

In the background, you can see my attack penguin guarding us. He will follow you around like a little puppy if granted that pleasure, but I still think he’s happiest when he is patrolling, keeping the home front safe from…whatever it is that virtual penguins deem to be a threat.

This was my obvious choice for the Weekly Photo Challenge, Companionable. Please check out the comments of that post for other entries to this week’s challenge.