05 February 2007

Building avatars

While playing around with a new avatar build, I realized that I want to do a tutorial series on making avatars. I like making avatars, and there's a lot of questions about how to make them. They're one of the most complicated thing to create in SL. Designing them takes a lot of forethought. Manifesting them can require building, texturing, animating, and scripting skills.

I want to experiment with mixing my inworld and RL sources... Notecards are such a poor way of sharing 2D information. And you can't easily run translation tools over notecards. I also want to explore video in SL; blame Twiddler's how-to videos. *grin*

There's stuff related to the basic avatar. Applying textures, changing shape, how to use a clear texture to create a bald avatar, making skin and eye textures, how to wear attachments... Prim hair, shoes, different colored eyes?

Invisiprims. Gah, I could write chapters on using invisiprims. Start with shoes and limb removal, moving into furry, mechanical, and skeletal complexity.

Then there's furries and the like (standard sized prim avatars). And cartoon (fullbright) avatars with blacklining. Organic shapes from prims. Understanding how attachment points behave.

Using AOs to change the avatar - Tinies, Giants, alternate poses, digigrade, things with more than four limbs...

Basic scripts to make wings flap, ears twitch, etc. Common animation tricks: moving and rotating vs alternating alphas vs slick texture tricks. Uses of flexi. HUDs for avatars.

Freebies of different styles of avatars, invisiprims, tiny and giant AOs, script samples, posing stands...

Not even scoping this out yet it looks like a lot of work. One of the things I've been thinking a lot about lately is goals. Lindens are nice, but for me they're just a resource for getting things I want, and maybe a way to keep count. Building up a virtual business has been interesting but not something that drives me. I thought about making a new avatar every month for sale, and while I may do that the goal doesn't excite me enough. It's the making and the sharing that gets me going. This, I could spend ages on it and never be done, I'd be learning tons and enjoying the heck out of it.

I'm nuts to be considering this.

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