Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Mariko Magic: Kallisto - A Dress for a Goddess

Look up into the night sky and you'll find Kallisto there among the constellations. She's the Great Bear (Ursa Major) circling the North Star in the company of her son, the Little Bear (Ursa Minor). Kallisto wasn't always a bear. Her name means 'most beautiful' in ancient Greek, and she was a most beautiful nymph who caught the roving eye of the great god Zeus. More of her story later. The fashion that I'm featuring is inspired by the myth and is fittingly called Kallisto. It's a dress made for a goddess and is available at GizzA Creations.

Click on the pictures to enlarge them for better viewing

Kallisto was the daughter of Lycaon, king of Arcadia, and a beautiful creature of nature who roamed the mountains of that wild country and hunted the beasts of its forests as a companion nymph to Artemis, goddess of the hunt and of young girls. She vowed to remain a virgin as do all the nymphs of Artemis. But that was not to be as she became the object of Zeus's desire. The great philandering god disguised himself as Artemis to lure Kallisto away from the other nymphs. It must have been a most shocking moment for poor Kallisto when her beloved goddess revealed how happy she was to see her. Months later, an angry Artemis banished Kallisto from her coterie of nymphs when Kallisto's pregnancy was noticed while bathing. Kallisto gave birth to a son, Arcas. It was then that Hera, the jealous wife of Zeus, took her revenge and transformed Kallisto into a great lumbering bear. Hera's revenge was almost complete when Arcas, now 16 years old and hunting in the forest, took aim with his silver bow and arrow to unwittingly slay his own mother. But, Zeus quickly intervened to prevent the tragedy by grabbing the bear by the tail and hurling her into the night sky. The god then transformed Arcas into a bear and likewise hurled him into the night sky to join his mother. And so, Kallisto and her son took their place among the constellations and together roam the night sky forever circling the North Star.

The Constellations Ursa Major and Ursa Minor

Kallisto was designed by Giz Seon, the designer of stylish high fashion at GizzA Creations. Kallisto comes in eight colors: black, red, pink, lilac, golden, aqua, salmon, and pearl. I am wearing pearl. Kallisto sells for L$450. The skirt is somewhat shear. Instead of wearing the white glitch pants, I'll wear white panties to create a look that is more .... charming. It also shows off my legs to better effect when walking or dancing.

The hair that I am wearing is from DrLife and is called Mariko. Yes, this hair was named after me by my dear friend Leena Ying, owner of DrLife. Mariko uses DrLife's All Color system with which you can create a wide range of colors and highlights for the hair, all for one price. Mariko is priced at L$350. The jewelry that I'm wearing is from Artistry by ~E~ and is called Kim. The jewelry at Artistry by ~E~ was highly recommended to me by my friend Lulubelle. The designs by Endra Graves are outstanding. The Kim set consists of necklace, earrings, and bracelet. It sells for L$375. The individual pieces in the set can also be purchased separately.

GizzA Creations

Artistry by ~E~

DrLife skins and hair are available at Mariko, my fashion boutique located on the Grand Rue at Mont Saint Michel:


These pictures were taken at Majesterium, a magnificent build by the amazing Patch Thibaud located in Cheval de Mer:

Majesterium, Cheval de Mer

My friend Meimei Shiu also blogged Kallisto (in black) on her fashion blog. She looks fabulous in the dress.

Meimei Shiu

Friday, April 20, 2012

Photo Mariko - Sojourns in Faraway Places

The opening lines of Emerald Wynn's recent  blog post,  humorous as always, set me thinking and made me extremely self conscious about leading off this post with an egocentric picture of myself. So, I'll put that picture second and lead this post with a Japanese teahouse ablaze in windlight. Well, that looks pretty. And, it eased my conscience knowing that I didn't follow the blogger herd with a leadoff exercise in narcissism. Plenty of time for that later.  Now, please don't let this lead picture give you the impression that I'm any kind of virtual artist. I belong to the instant coffee school of Second Life photography. I just find an interesting view, fiddle with some windlight, and snap the picture ... photography as easy as instant coffee. Most of the time, I don't even bother with windlight.

Emerald's Eyes by Emerald Wynn is my favorite favorite favorite Second Life blog:

Click on the pictures to enlarge them for better viewing.

Egocentric Picture
Given the extraordinarily mild winter along the east coast, the cherry trees are flowering early in the Northeast in a spectacular show that is now in its final act. It truly deserves a standing ovation.  That show has its Second Life counterpart in Islamey, the Garden in the Sky, located in Chouchou.

Japanese Teahouse in Islamey, Chouchou
I introduced Chouchou in my last post.  It's a fascinating place composed of 3 major regions: The Babel, Momento, and Islamey. The Babel and Momento are very abstract, very intriguing, and very creative. But, it's to Islamey that I will return again and again. This Japanese garden is breathtakingly lovely and at the same time very tranquil.

Jaysun and I had tea at Islamey. Jay brought his own personal tea with him which he shared with me. It's called Chernobl.

Islamey in Chouchou
Islamey, Chouchou

My previous post was located in The Babel, so let's go to Momento. The centerpiece at Momento in Chouchou is a monumental cathedral. It's stark and very minimalist. It looks almost skeletal.

There's no flying in Chouchou; so, you have to walk. And it's a long trudge to the cathedral and a long climb up the stairs to the top of the cathedral. To give you a sense of the size of this build, those two little specks in the entrance of the cathedral are me and Chisaki.

Exploring the cathedral in Momento, Chouchou
This is not an egocentric picture because Chisaki is absolutlely adorable here and definitely outshines me  She's the center of attention in the picture. I'm a little obsessed right now with this egocentric thing.

Momento in Chouchou

I like finding town squares in Second Life that have an Old World ambiance. This one in Amia  is very nice. There's a little al fresco cafe here where you can sit at a table and enjoy the atmosphere...


... if you can overlook the pigs in the fountain.

A pleasant surprise in the square is this corral with its lovely horses. Although these horses are absolutely adorable, this is an egocentric pic. I'm an unnecessary part of this picture. In fact, it would be a better picture with me left out of it.

Broadway actress/singer Tamra Hayden in concert as Tamra Sands in Second Life. You should definitely catch her live performances. They are part of what makes Second Life so special.

Tamra Hayden's website

Obviously, an egocentric picture.
The Loneliness of Being is a work of contemplative art by artist Ian Pahute. Its setting is a small remote island with a comfortable campfire and a evolving cloud of ever changing words drawn live from the Internet. I don't see words here, only ephemeral letters from the alphabet. Well, if I was stranded on a desert island and going insane, I might see such hallucinations. 'Others see hidden meaning and personal insight', so claims the write up on the work. A e k P o t L ... anyone see any hidden meaning in that? How about personal insight? Anyways, it's a lovely spot. Check it out and contemplate.

The Loneliness of Being

Principato di Melioria
In Latin, di melioria means 'heaven send us better times.' For many history buffs, there is no better time than the 18th century. And there is no better place to immerse oneself in the Age of Reason than at the Principato di Melioria. I mean, where else can you find a discussion group discussing  'The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shady, Gentleman', the favorite novel of Thomas Jefferson and his wife.

Principato di Melioria

A role player at Principato di Melioria

This role play sim is an island principality off the coast of  Massa Lubrense near Naples, Italy in 1780. It is a secret retreat for many European royalty and is known for its temperate climate, brilliant social pleasures, and curative waters. The ruling family is originally English, and the spirit here is of the Scottish Enlightenment of John Locke, David Hume, and Adam Smith rather than  of the French Philosophes, thankfully. It's very well done and an interesting place and well worth a visit.

What the camera saw.
Some time ago, Stevie and I spend a pleasant hour dressing up and taking pictures in the grotto under the Villa Vesuiana in Westphalia at Principato di Melioria. A camera can catch an unguarded moment. But, is Stevie really checking me out?

Speaking of the 18th century, I took this picture of Lulubelle in period costume at Chateau de Versailles. Chateau de Versailles is a role play sim and an extraordinarily ambitious project to  recreate, in accurate detail, the royal court of France anno domini 1773. The palace of Versailles in Second Life is an incredible ongoing achievement - a Second Life Treasure. So,  put on your best Marie Antoinette impersonation and experience the salons and court life of 18th century France, even if you have to put up with those insufferable philosophes of the French Enlightenment. Let 'em eat cake. 

Chateau de Versailles

Jaysun is a role player at Chateau de Versailles. Jay is a noble of high rank and has an apartment in the palace near the chambers of the queen. Moving forward in time to 1793, I hope we don't see Jay being led up the steps to the guillotine at the Place de la Concorde, the natural conclusion of the French Enlightenment. But, knowing Jaysun, he would have been one of those nobles with the foresight to immigrate to Philadelphia, the capital of the new republic of the United States of America (the natural conclusion of the Scottish Enlightenment is the United States, Land of Liberty).

These are my two kittens, Yum and Jet, at my villa in Opar, my country estate.  You can see that this is an egocentric picture; but, those kittens are absolutely adorable. And it's a nice picture to end this post.

Dear Reader, visit my estate as my guest: