UPDATE 11 June, 2018: The shape has been de-listed from the marketplace, as I am preparing my marketplace store to sell a different line of products. I will make another shop for my shapes. Thanks for looking!
When the Fitmesh capability came to SL, we were finally able to use better-designed bodies than the default avatar. This capability was complemented when Bento arrived, which not only added full articulation to our avatar’s fingers (and extra bones for other functions), but also enabled content creators to sell mesh heads that were adjustable with the viewer’s shape sliders. Of course, the differences between the various mesh heads and bodies always remain; especially with heads, the scope of adjustment is subject to limitations imposed by the head’s basic design, which may be part of the creator’s design language.
However, just as mesh body and head creators have their own styles and design languages, so do we, the users. As regular readers of my blog may remember from my posts tagged “My digits“, I have my own avatar design language: First of all, I try to endow my avatar with a realistic height and realistic proportions. Second, after 2015, I decided to design my avatar after my RL shape; so, what you see in my SL photography where my avatar is pictured, bears a strong resemblance to what I actually look like.
Designing an avatar shape can be a daunting task for many users, especially those who are just starting out with SL. So, I have decided to offer ready-made shapes for you people. I want to let you know right from the start that I’m going to be designing them for body parts that I actually own and use, and what I buy is determined by my habits and my budget. So, these shapes will all be made for the Maitreya Lara mesh body and for whatever LAQ mesh head I have in my inventory. Now, why did I choose this combination? I have four reasons: I like these products’ looks, they’re easy to use, there is a vast variety of clothing available for this particular body, and I’ve found I’m getting my money’s worth with them.
I want you to know I’m not treating SL as a profession of some sort, so I don’t expect to pay my bills by selling stuff to its users; I have a day job for this, and my salary is satisfactory. So, I’ll be selling my shapes, which will include both a body and head shape and a brow shape, for L$75 each. The shapes will come with copy / mod permissions, so that you will be able to tweak them, should you wish to personalise them. At the end of the post, you will find a link to this shape’s marketplace listing.
What I’m starting with here is my own shape. It has been designed specifically for the Maitreya Lara (current version – at the time of writing – V4.1) and the LAQ Bento – Gaia head (current version 3.05). If you try to use this shape with other mesh bodies, you might have to make adjustments to get a similar aesthetic result. Likewise with the head: If you use this shape with a different model from the same designer, or with a head from another designer, you might not like what you see, and you may have to spend more time fiddling with the sliders. As I wrote elsewhere in this post, I try to keep my shape proportionate and realistically-sized (please see Penny Patton’s seminal posts on avatar proportion and scale, as well as my previous “My digits” posts).
As to what I’m wearing in the pictures of this post, here are the style credits:
- Mesh Body: Maitreya Mesh Body – Maitreya Lara v4.1 by Onyx LeShelle
- Mesh Head: LAQ Bento – Motion Capture – Gaia 3.05 by Mallory Cowen (L$1,500 for the head alone; the HUD costs L$3,000 and can be used with all LAQ heads, so you can have one HUD for all the LAQ heads in your inventory)
- Skin Applier: LAQ ~Maitreya Body Applier [Nougat]
- LAQ ~ Tasha Head Applier [Nougat]
- Makeup: Included with the head’s HUD
- Eyes: IKON Perspective Eyes – Coffee (S) by Ikon Innovia
- Hair: MINA Hair – Odyle (materials) by Mina Nakamura
- Top: erratic / brandi – top / red flowers by Erratic Rain
- Shorts: erratic / skylar – denim shorts / lightblue
- Shoes: [Gos] Lolita Espadrilles by Gospel Voom
- Poses: oOo Studio: Palais by Olaenka Chesnokov
SL Marketplace listing: