Living in paintings

I’ll start this week’s column off by graciously thanking each and every Resident who took the time to comment on last week’s post. The responses were as diverse as those of you who expressed them β€” it was lovely to see a lot of really heartwarming anecdotes describing what Second Life means to you, alongside championing of Issue Tracker bug reports some had filed (I’m thrilled to see that!), next to some very witty “They don’t get its!” in reference to “older media”… and constructive criticism and concerns about the future too. My interest in asking you how you felt, of course, was never to scrutinize TIME or any single viewpoint, but rather, hear your personal stories. For it is what you’ve done and can share that matters. We’re all human β€” well, many of us are furries and an incredible assortment of other avatar forms, but that’s Second Life, right? πŸ˜‰

One common theme I’ve noticed over the years in SL is, if you have friends here, mutual support helps a lot when technical woes threaten to put a damper on your fun. It wasn’t too long ago that I hung out with some peeps wearing “I Hate Update Wednesdays” T-shirts β€” it has a meaning unique to our SL culture. And while the shirts aren’t “real” in the physical sense, they make a clear statement which we resonate with, which is why we’re so excited to deliver Message Liberation, a major move towards freeing you from the tyranny of the older update schedule. (It’s all connected!)

Now, I want to share a beautiful movie that’s had a lot of Lindens abuzz, and I’ve seen a lot of oohs and aahs in the community about it too. For your viewing pleasure:

In Robbie Dingo’s words:

This work is dedicated to the many weird and very wonderful strangers from around the globe I have met, but have never really met.

Via New World Notes, learn more about how he “remade the stars”.

Incidentally, I learned that when both Qarl Linden and myself were hoping to work at Linden Lab, we visualized an eventual Second Life as being akin to the special effects in What Dreams May Come β€” living in paintings.

They say art’s not created in a vacuum, and neither is Second Life. For all the messiness, like the archetypical chaos on swaths of the Mainland, there’s an ample amount of beauty that’s arisen. I’m not just talking about things or places, but people too, and how we express ourselves here. In other words, the collected incarnations of our emotions.

Emotions may be intangible, but so is knowledge. And both are foremost to the history of creating art, a process which irrevocably becomes magical when you see it take place within your eyes, like the time-lapse mastery of Robbie Dingo’s vid, and even moreso, when you actively interact in the content creation flow.

To this day, I swear one of the kewlest things about Second Life is that if you see something you like, contact is just an instant message away, and this facilitates telling someone “YOU ROCK!” Going beyond text chat, you can visit with them, in-avatar, and until such time we get “RL teleports”, I’d say this is pretty swell. And this sort of activity happens every hour in Second Life, involving strangers (possibly soon to become friends) you “have never really met”.

As we add aesthetic enhancements to Second Life in addition to much other work, we continue to think + feel these social dynamics despite misconceptions which don’t show “the big picture”. I’ll elaborate: on occasion, visual and even usability improvements to Second Life are perceived as merely being “shiny”, meaning that they’re about style and not substance, when the reality is they are often both. To illustrate this point, can you imagine the actual shiny graphical feature being removed?

Yes, you can “live without it”, but there’s so many existing and forthcoming builds which depend on good-looking shiny for Resident creators to accurately convey the art they made, how they intended you to see it. These features are like supporting players which enrich the main cast, making the figurative stage, the literal platform of Second Life that much more valuable.

Can you imagine discontinuing the rest of the spectrum that improves the immersive quality of the inworld experience, amplified when you’re sharing it with family & friends? It extends a broad range from more drastic changes requiring supported hardware, like WindLight (coming soon to a public release near you!):

to fine details of the user interface, the controls everyone uses to interact in SL β€” this loops us back to why even bugs that seem minor can and will result in cumulative pain after being repeatedly encountered, as I know firsthand from participating in many issue-specific discussions.

To use a metaphor, if stability is our easel, then the canvas is the basic functionality you expect, and the layers of paint upon it are the richness you’ve made, as a result of the tools, or paintbrushes, we’ve given you.

I sometimes relax by creating artistic renditions of post-processed Second Life snapshots taken of inspiring locations. I call it “Alternate Virtual Reality“, and some are quite painterly:

TiltshiftaMore PaintOrientation IslandSubliminal DelightsPastoral Park

and after being motivated by a series of events this week, I thought about how through creating art, we’re also creating the future:

Truth can be stranger than fiction, and life imitates art; if the art we create becomes our Second Lives, then the truth isn’t necessarily strange, but is truly beautiful…

SLerican Dream

I’ll be back next week with eclectic tips ‘n’ tricks to make your Second Life easier, and hopefully more fun!

Until then, live in paintings,


Torley Linden is a Product Manager & more who regularly contributes to the Official Linden Blog. He/she/it explores the Grid in search of art. Read Torley’s previous posts.

About Torley

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152 Responses to Living in paintings

  1. Finkel Flossberg says:

    WOAH! That video is simply amazing!
    Great work.

  2. Fox Diller says:

    Everything I do in Second Life, I find, includes a hint at my own personal sweat and struggle to deal with such an open ended platform. To a degree I’m lost, but I’ve been more-or-less found here. It’s always good to see the charismatic side of SL. Rock on Torley.

  3. Tillie Ariantho says:

    *gasp* Oh wow!

  4. Igel Hawks says:

    Thanks Torley. You make my day smile. Keep on telling us the wonderful sides of SL. I am curious about the next week’s posting.

  5. Syene says:

    Thank you Robbie Dingo!! I hope decades from now when people look back on the beginnings of habitable virtual space THIS is the way we will be remembered. (I also hope Vincent is watching . . . .) Thanks, Torley, for giving us powerfully positive wonders to focus on. YAY! πŸ™‚

  6. Raven Primeau says:

    Winge as much as I do about lag and crashes and so forth, its seeing things like this and such other residient created content that makes me stop, think and realise why I have spent 11 months here in SL for.

    Fantastic creativity (whats the chance of a free sim for me to practice my artistic talents on) *blinks*

  7. Cinos Field says:

    I wish Windlight would be released already, it really does make everything look ten times better.

    No more eyesore skies.

  8. Davina Glitter says:

    Thank you. πŸ™‚ Huggies
    All the best,

  9. Shamara Yoshikawa says:

    tears running down on my face…. thank you, great stuff…. πŸ™‚

  10. Saijanai Kuhn says:

    Soft sigh.

  11. Robbie Dingo is a genius. His Better Life Video makes me cry every time I see it. If any SL art makes it to the mainstream, it will be his. Better Life should be in movie theatres shown before the main event.
    It would make anyone who saw it a more sensitive and aware people (except those ad cutters of course)
    Thank you once again Robbie for reminding me that I love SL because I’m an artist.

  12. Ullagoogla Uggla says:

    welcome in!

  13. That was truly amazing Torley, the last thing to take my breath away was finding Second Life, that video and your blurb just did it again.

    I truly hope that people can see what you are trying to do with Second Life, its been rejected time and time again, but you keep coming back and wont lay down. I admire that in any person and so very much admire it in LL.

    Please just never commercially sell out on Second Life, that video just showed what were doing here, PLEASE dont let the $ ruin another beautiful thing.


  14. Cat Gisel says:

    Don’t leave it here….

    (If you don’t know what this means, come see me).

  15. Congrats to that really good video, it makes me motivating to owe a whole sim and start to landscape and build like this.

  16. Benja says:

    What a marvellous platform for creativity Second Life is!

  17. Jacquelin Seisenbacher says:

    “tears running down on my face…. thank you, great stuff…. ” -Shamara Yoshikawa

    Thank you for reminding me what we really can do here.

  18. Darke Dagostino says:

    That video was completely amazing!! There are so many wonderfully talented and artistic people in SL.

  19. Ann Otoole says:

    I have much sadness for those who will never know or understand what Secondlife can be and how your very soul can be freed from the shackles of an unforgiving and uncaring “modern day” society.

  20. zebadee says:

    omg that video, made the hairs stand up on the back of my neck when seeing the end result… jaw droppingly good

  21. Viridian Ducatillon says:

    Excellent – my heart skipped a beat when you said that you imagined SL as something akin to “What Dreams May Come.” I’ve found a few places like that and it seems like many people I meet have their own favorite place to meditate. I’m so happy to read this sort of blog posting – it gets too serious here sometimes.

  22. Tamala Tombola says:

    The thing that thrills me most about sl is the creativity and skill of the people. This video pretty much sums up nicely and puts to shame any words I might utter in an effort to explain why.

  23. Cortez Mendes says:

    yet another video from Robbie Dingo thatΒ΄s touched my soul

  24. ankt Remblai says:

    WOW. and to think he used Van Gogh, Starry night, and the don mclean song (all my favorites). I admire folks who are creative. and this video just takes my breath away

  25. Justa Koba says:

    Good people create things
    Second Life made this video possible to create
    And that’s a good thing

    Have a good first and Second, stay outta third

  26. Shockwave Yareach says:

    That was gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous.

    *applauds Robbie Dingo*

  27. Simply beautiful, its great to see people in Second Life are devoted to using SL as a way to express themselves, and recreating one of the most beautiful paintings in the world in SL? Breathtaking.

    Well done.

  28. Jet Burns says:

    A moving moment has much more to do with being moved, rather than moving. In art, most paintings can move people, but Second Life is really art in motion. I am doing my part to bring science and serious use of the virtual worlds into the real world because after all there are two schools in the world… Masters of Sciences and Masters of Arts. Second Life, and other virtual worlds can inspire us all to strive for the higher asperations of mankinds goals and dreams, while the 11pm news shall always focus on the lower dreadges of the virtual world slums. Bravo Robbie! If you measure your success in joyful tears, then consider yourself succusful because I have been moved.

  29. Trinity Dechou says:

    That video was stunning. It reminds me why I love SL, we need more videos like this one. Excellent job!

  30. Wrath Crosby says:

    Wow….just…but he…did you see…wow…*wells up in tears at the powerful beauty*

  31. ari blackthorne says:

    Thanks Torley…

    You know… the bugs, glitches, crashes, groaning computer… the complaints. open letters, Lindenonian jokes…

    It’s easier to be frustrated and and sometimes just fume and scream and shout about all the issues SL has than it is to just pick-up and leave…

    …because that video shows what it’s all about.

    Thank you. πŸ™‚

  32. Debbie Trilling says:

    Simply beautiful…

  33. Psistorm Ikura says:

    just wow. this video is truly awesome, there is no better way to say it. simply awesome. I too am looking forward to windlight, with all the fixes applied to it, it might be a really awesome release πŸ™‚

  34. Pansy Snoring says:

    Torley, your words are exactly how I would express what Second Life means to me were I as articulate, thank you.

    Robbie, kudos to you. Beautifully done! Deep sigh. Now I am all schvitzy. πŸ™‚ Thank you for that (its a good thing)

  35. Daedalus Young says:

    Amazing! The video and the music go so well together, it’s like not only Vincent had a vision of another world, also Don McLean had πŸ˜› And now we’re here to actually see the world!
    Thanks very much for sharing πŸ™‚

  36. Klaatu Congrejo says:

    Awesome Robbie, truly awesome! And thankyou Torley for bringing it to a wider audience.
    This kind of thing confirms that SL is not just an on-line game, not just a ‘monopoly’ board, and it is certainly not just a social club! It is also quickly becoming a valid mode of artistic expression as many SL members experiment with new ideas to amaze the community, and that amazement encourages others to experiment with THEIR ideas…. and so it goes on.

    Beautiful stuff!
    Love’n’Peace all πŸ™‚

  37. Rox Arten says:

    Thank you again for another great post Torley, I always look forward to reading your posts though i don’t often comment. I have to say that some of what i have seen described as “shiny” is not for many users. User interface improvements and additions that the “average user” (is there even an average sl user we are all so unique in how we experience the world) may never use or even care about could actually be something that makes things much easier for other users.

    Flexi could have been called a shiny when it was introduced and yet it is such a big part of our sl experience!

    As for living in paintings, beautiful thought, now to figure out how to actually move into sl there is so much beauty in this world we all have created (if you haven’t found that beauty yet keep exploring not all of sl is shopping centers, clubs, and sandboxes)!

    Robbie’s video is wonderful, it was shown to me first two days ago in world though I had no idea it was set to such beautiful music then because I have sounds off in world much of the time. Thanks for sharing it here it’s wonderful.

  38. Lazarus Longstaff says:

    Robbie that was one of the coolest things I have ever seen done with SL bar none.


  39. Brenda Maculate says:

    Robbie’s work made me cry, it was so beautiful!

    I love spending time in SL for many reasons, laggy as it gets, because it allows me the opportunity to explore who I *am*. I have done things that I thought weren’t very good, but my SL friends told me were very good. I found that I have a knack for scripting, such as it is.

    More importantly, SL allows me to meet people from different facets of life. I’ve met with artists, musicians, and other talented people, all of whom I would not have had the pleasure of meeting in real life. Some of them live within a hundred miles of me, some on the other side of the world.

    Thanks, Lindens, for making SL a fun place to be.

  40. Inspiring to say the least but then that is life (life art.. living art) whether it is online or off.. SecondLife and programs like it are in my personal opinion all part of what I prefer to refer to as life in the demi-matrix.. virtual reality..a holographic space where one project an inner digita self reflection.. as my daughter says.. in fake life we can fly with wings.. soar in our mind.. spirit.. a place to create art, self expression, an escape, a sanctuary, a refuge, a place for commercial and educational organizations, business, 3D chat, culture, and more… yes there is some clutter in the world but then again.. isn’t there clutter in what we all call the “real” world as well? Bravo to all of the art and especially to that of Robbie Dingo… beautiful… let’s see more.

  41. Echo Kinsella says:

    Thank you for sharing! That was Awesome!

  42. Jazzman Jibilla says:

    Wow Wee…Very impressive work Doctor Dingo. I hope LL realizes how good for them that will be.
    I second #12….

  43. Marianne McCann says:

    I saw that video yesterday. Truly amazing. Robbie Dingo also makes the most wonderful instruments. His work on this video and elsewhere shows just what is possible, and is refreshing to see after so much hard stuff.

    Oh – and when, oh when can we have WindLight back? I want my Titian-esque syies back. πŸ™‚

  44. Ken Chihuly says:

    My my… that must’ve lots of work & dedication
    Kudos to the artist πŸ˜‰

  45. Las Nishi says:

    Words cannot express the emotions that came welling up after viewing this. After 30 plus years of creating art I thank God that I have lived long enough to see this and some of the other most wonderful things in SL. I know for sure now that the future is going to be dazzling. Thank you Robbie and all the SL creators and community. WOW!

  46. Kahlest Enoch says:

    I just want to echo what everyone else is saying, WOW, what an awesome video. And yes it moved me to tears as well. really really cool. Thank you for sharing that with us. Yes there are some annoying bugs with SL, but I know they will eventually go away. And I know that some we thought were gone forever come back once in a while (like the hair between the legs after teleport) but hey that is part of what makes SL fun for me, sometimes it is a surprise to see what will happen to my avatar after a TP. Thanks LL. I LOVE SL, and because of you I have meet very good friends I would have never meet in RL.

    Kahlest Enoch

  47. AWM Mars says:

    QUOTE: To use a metaphor, if stability is our easel, then the canvas is the basic functionality you expect, and the layers of paint upon it are the richness you’ve made, as a result of the tools, or paintbrushes, we’ve given you./UNQUOTE

    Sadly many would say that the easel is too wobbly to create without immense frustration…

    There are many art forms, scripting and coding is one of them, otherwise computers would be churning out working code by themselves by now. I have no wish for a Linden to cut off their ear…

    Back to the post: I remain in SL because the canvas I use and the colours I paint, are mine, and I can share in the wonderment of looking at everyone elses visions, an insight to their soul? Or meerly a reflection? Some see SL through different eyes to mine.. but whats wonderful, is sometimes catching glimpses of how they perceive the world.. their world.. their eyes.

    We forget sometimes, during the frustrating times when our easel wobbles perhaps moreso than other times… it’s all an art form.. it’s just that we are not all the same artists.

  48. Wow! that was amazing.

    i stumbled upon SL nearly two years ago, never had a chance to get into it until about 1 year ago…
    since then, I’ve been addicted. even with the bugs, the lag (honestly, any problems i have are through my internet provider. somebody, please find some way to MAKE them fix things.)
    and the greifers, even with those problems, this World *we* are creating, has held me in awe.
    windlight, sculpties, whatever else could be added to improve this, release it, i was amazed with the windlight preview, prims are fun to play with… flying, racing, relaxing in a virutal park, it’s all amazingly fun.
    SL is a beautiful world. keep up the good work and all that, i really enjoy the results.
    (that goes to both the developers in world, and the crew at LL making it possible.)

  49. Niki Writer says:

    Awesom Article Torly πŸ™‚

    My father lust died yesterday morning on my 51st birthday reading this article and watching the beautiful movie brought him back to me. It made me onc again realize how powerfull and special Second Life really is…..

  50. sirhc DeSanti says:

    My god – that video brought out the same feeling I have when I’m just building for fun. Playing. trying out shapes. No goal, no purpose just pleasure at creating. Awesome. If I try maybe one day I could make something one thousandth of the beauty in that. And i would be so happy just for that. Thanks Torley I owe you one.

  51. Aenea says:

    I saw the video and blogged it a few days ago, and again last night when I showed it to my spouse (who was awestruck).

    Robbie’s video reminded me of the amazing possibilities afforded by this platform, and challenged me to take more risks, be more creative, and just jump off the edge. The fall won’t hurt at all…

  52. ina centaur says:

    *****wow where can we see starry night inworld?*****

  53. Saphirus Sage says:

    Impressive, that video was amazing! What more perfect song for such a scene?

  54. Kimo Junot says:

    I live by a motto here in SL…..”If you can dream it-it can happen here in SL”…………..the only limit is your mind

  55. Jenny Carlos says:

    And all I do is make guns for people to do combat with in SL :(.
    Thats why ive been in such dumps lately I gues. No time for fun anymore but work work work to try and keep products working and up to date, My Second Life use to be fun but not sure where its gone to.

    There is one thing that keeps me going and happy and thats when my customers message me and tell me how great my stuff is and how they love to use it.

    That makes up for almost everything (except bugs).. πŸ™‚

    Kinda makes me wonder what I would do if I had a full sim to myself πŸ™‚

  56. mairead mcconnell says:

    the next newbie who asks “what can you do in this game?” will be pointed right at that stunning peice.

  57. Skye Galileo says:

    Wow….just wow!

    So incredibly beautiful…and such an amazing example of just one of the many ways one can be creative in SL.

    The next time a newbie asks me….”What can I do here?”….I am sending them to see Robbie’s video πŸ™‚

    Robbie…thanks for making SL more beautiful with your work and your presence πŸ™‚

  58. Ada Radius says:

    Emotions may be intangible, but so is knowledge.


  59. Smiley Barry says:

    Amazing video!! Now THAT’s real Machinima! To create a piece of work that everyone will recognize and love, regardless of knowledge about that specific media used to create it. AKA: to make normal non-SLers like it ‘^_^.

  60. Buster McNutt says:

    this is what makes SL able to bring emotions online much better then IRC

  61. Ishtara Rothschild says:

    Wow πŸ™‚ that’s… impressionistic-impressive. A great idea, and a great work of art.

  62. Kiboe Munro says:

    good job robbie

    @#10, yea its sad, becasue we have these greifwers tht wnt tpo shut down second life

  63. Digital Digital says:

    That is simply amazing πŸ˜‰

  64. Paulc Beck says:

    What a beautiful video and a wonderful way of using Second Life.

    This is what it’s about…. Immersive experiences and breaking the mold.

  65. Cat Cotton says:

    Awesome; What dreams will come is my favorite movie of all time. “I get it” πŸ™‚



  66. Markopolis Balhaus says:

    We are all the beneficiaries of each others creation. Thank you and WOW

  67. Raivann Brissot says:

    Absolutely beautiful, I’m in tears. My very favourite song too. Thanks Robbie, and Torley for showing us.

  68. Archer Braun says:

    Torley, YOU are actually my favorite part of SL. If only more Linden’s were concerned with the creation of meaningful, contextual, and creative content…instead of the latest dry, technical features.
    Good to see you posting on the blog, again.

  69. Zandi Moe says:

    my only comment ‘WOW”

  70. Ravena Decuir says:

    real life enters seond life each time we log on, but we must never forget that in exploring second life we are exploring our own minds and the fantasies there. Thankyou for the reminder of what it is all about.

    hugs… Ravena.

  71. Amanda Ascot says:

    Torley, kudos for another wonderfully-delightful installment of your column. I just wish it could be daily, instead of weekly. I haven’t seen an “I Hate Update Wednesdays” T-shirt, although I’d love to have one, in case anybody can tell me where I can get it. If I had the talent to do it, I’d have already created a T-shirt that says “I Love Wednesday Madness” — a much more obtuse poke that I imagine would even be lost on many SL residents, but which reflects my sense of humor, and my “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” attitude with many things.

    I sit on both sides of fence (not straddling — I’m actually bi-located) with regards to the issue of adding eye/ear candy to Second Life when so many things are still broken and not getting fixed, but that’s because I like to weigh all sides of an argument before speaking out either for or against it. I would love to get some long-standing annoyances fixed, but I don’t want a halt put to aesthetic improvements, either. There are different people working on this stuff, of course, so people-power isn’t an issue. The issue is the way complex systems interact to yield unexpected, and usually unfortunate, results. Second Life is a test bed for Chaos Theory and Complexity Theory. πŸ™‚

    I *know* the date of an “upgrade”, and that term is a sort of inside joke among residents, as I’m sure you know, and I just prepare for it. I used to not even bother logging on. Failed teleports, extreme lag, rezzings gone bad, scripts not running, hair and other attachments crammed into unmentionable places, empty inventories, winding up at the zero point of a sim when you sit on a chair … these things used to scare me away, but you know what? I take it in stride, now. I find the least-laggy place I can can, park myself there, and have some quality IM/chat time with my friends until the Grid stabilizes — usually after all the impatient people get disgusted and log off.

    Bottom line, fix the things that perturb me, like that annoying prim snap-back back bug that has plagued builders for as long as I’ve been in Second Life, or the chaotic behavior of inventory folders that has me constantly searching for things that get dropped accidently into a folder that just decides to pop open all by itself as I’m moving things around, but give me my shineys too. WindLight, after a little tweaking, is breathtaking, and unlike a lot of residents who were asking for the original Second Life cloud cover, I don’t miss the clouds. In fact, to me clouds are one of the little annoyances of Second Life — like fog. I do a great deal of long-distance camera work — something I became quite good at when I was making my living camping. I didn’t just park my av and wander away in the Real World to do something else. I chatted with people … and explored the sim around me, sometimes even spending my hard-earned cash shopping on the other side of a sim. To this day, I prefer to remain in one spot, and do as much as I can without having to move around, and I *love* aerial views of sims. I set render distance to 512m, disable camera constraints, turn off clouds and enjoy the view. That view will be so much more beautiful once WindLight is fully integrated into Second Life.

    As you mentioned, there are some very beautiful places in Second Life. One of the most lovely is Kiriaki Falls, although that may, unfortunately, have its days numbered since the owner is selling off all his islands. Another is Support For Healing, where I’m honored to be one of the Island Helpers. Even some of the mainland sims, for all their Big Ugly Buildings and dingy neighborhoods, have a sort of stark beauty of their own. Not long ago I actually took a walk across both of the original mainland continents — no flying and no teleporting except to get around ban fences, which are one of the *other* really annoying things in Second Life. I was amazed at the variety of “looks” I saw — everything from beautiful parks and lazy residential neighborhoods through bustling business centers to bleak, almost post-apolyptic sims complete with decaying structures and blasted landscapes. It was six hours well-spent, and had I had the L$ at the time I would have taken lots of snapshots and posted them … somewhere … Alas, I don’t have your talent for post-processing images, but sometimes seeing things just how thery actually are is nice, too.

    “Truth can be stranger than fiction, and life imitates art; if the art we create becomes our Second Lives, then the truth isn’t necessarily strange, but is truly beautiful…” So true, Torley, but I’ll go a step further. Here in Second Life we turn fiction *into* truth — the Virtual Truth that is all of Second Life, and we begin to take many things in this fantasy world for granted. The other day I was straining to see something in a distance, in the Real World, and for a moment I fogot where I was and actually attempted to *will* my POV to zoom in and pan around the thing I wanted to see!

  72. Bailey Dazy says:

    I cannot believe people possess that kind of talent to be able to recreate such an amazing piece of artwork.
    I would LOVE to see more of this and I would love for the sims to be made public to go see.

  73. Moose Maine says:

    Another tear here, and once again inspired to build even more.

  74. Atlwolf says:

    If only the paintings weren’t so laggy πŸ˜›

  75. Buck Brentano says:

    Thank you for sharing this video Torley. And thank you Robbie for being part of the Second Life Community Robbie! I don’t know how you do it or what education a person needs to pull off such a skillful and beautiful feat, but you have it in spades.

  76. zylonk says:

    The video: a laboured way of reproducing Samuel Palmer?

  77. Spikez Stine says:

    Whoa. That was really and truely one unique and beatiful video. I loved the way he built it so it looks almost like the REAL painting! =O

  78. Kittie Munro says:

    Both video and blog quite simply took my breath away.

  79. Enigma Snook says:

    I tried to view the video while in class (lunch) and it would do nothing. (I didn’t get any errors or pop up issues either) I’ll try again tonight from home but I’m wondering if it’s as great as the comments.

  80. Count Burks says:

    This shows what great potential SL has, most people just haven’t discovered yet what is possible, what can be achieved and for what SL can be used.

  81. Vincent Nacon says:

    Yeah… youre forgetting one thing…. having a SIM is not free.

    Makes dream harder to get.

  82. Simon Nolan says:

    Torley, thanks for sharing Robbie’s video. Now I have something to explain to my SO the reason why I think Second Life is so amazing.

    @ Archer Braun, I think we need to keep in mind that those dry, technical features are what enable the wonderful, creative content.

    @ Vincent Nacon, I don’t have a sim of my own, and yet so many things I’d never dreamed of doing in RL are the very things I’m doing here. Like running my own shop full of things that I’ve made myself.

  83. MagicJustSue Kojima says:

    There are no adequate words to say how beautiful that video was. It is all felt in my soul. Ty Robbie and Ty Torley for sharing that.

  84. Dirk Felix says:

    Torley did you get permission to use copyright material for this blog?

  85. Montana Corleone says:

    Well, I have to say I’m not too impressed. Why? Not because it’s not an excellent video. Not because it’s not well done. It’s an awesome video. But, I’m lucky enough to live in the real Van Gogh land in Provence lol :p

    I see those mountains every day, can go and sip pastis on the CafΓ© Terrace in that picture (the cafΓ© still exists), and see the Olive trees, visit his room in the Sanatarium, if I ever get out of SL that is…

    Now, if Linden or PayPal took the national French debit card, Carte Bleue, my life would be perfect πŸ˜‰

    For those others here that love Vincent, here are a couple of must visit places:

    Virtual Starry Night – a very well done gallery, how galleries should be

    Van Gogh’s Arles – taster of some of the places in his paintings


  86. It is inspirational to see the SL platform being used as a 3D canvas. I view Second Life as a creative platform as much as I view it as an emerging social Metaverse. As Torley describes, enhancements to the visual tools are not just cosmetic, they play a vital part in making Second Life a more immersive experience; a better frame upon which we stretch the canvas of human imagination.

  87. Tsu Goodliffe says:

    I am very pleased to have meet Robbie dingo personally and I was even more pleased when he attended a few of my class’s, I have been watching as he Grows in second life, and His friendship is a value to never forget, and his kindness in second life would never be bested, I just wish he had the net connection with no caps limit to get on more, As When you have a internet caps limit second life is one thing that eats it quickly, When you buy his products, you can Always relay on a Very Kind none bluntly Reply from him, and his patients with People is None Forgettable. And his work can put tears in some of our eyes if you truly understand why he does what he does and how his videos affect the reality. I am Pleased And Honored to comment here about him as well as state Robbie Dingo, Your A Friend I Would never give up, Thank you for being with us all!

  88. Malarwen says:

    awesome!! amazing!! aweing!! Well done! Watching the video was like dreaming!

  89. Elliott Eldrich says:

    Bravo Robbie. Just… bravo. That really got to me. The metaverse is a better place because of people like you.

  90. Venerable Broome says:

    Torley, PLEASE beg, borrow, steal, pay or pray someone, anyone necessary to get the gist of today’s column and the video a PERMANENT place on the main web site!

    This blog just fades away too quickly.

  91. Pingback: 3D Paintings of van Gough: Virtual Dreams come True in Second Life at :: Brian Russell

  92. Daedalus Young says:

    Sorry to take up another comment in here, but a few things I need to say.

    @Dirk Felix: That one image directly from the YouTube servers can be used in fair use situations, like here. If Robbie didn’t want it to be linked, he could’ve set that in YouTube on uploading. No copyright is infringed at all.
    Besides, people should not fret so much over copyright anyway. Don’t restrict creativity, man!

    @Vincent Nacon: No, a region is not free, but there are funds you can apply for. And besides, if you make a painting, the paint is not free either. Nothing you need to make things is free. That’s RL.

  93. Daisy Overlord says:

    Wow. Totally, completely, wow.

  94. Pablicious Pessoa says:

    Torley, you ROCK! (Robbie Dingo anit so bad either! Breathtaking video!)

  95. jeza may says:

    Oh my…. That is amazing.. Simply amazing.. I am in awe πŸ™‚

  96. Shaylin Meadowbrook says:

    Both Robbie’s video and the painting at the end do represent Torley’s closing words that “we’re also creating the future.” To me, SL has many layers….a place to try new things, to find myself hidden under a layer of “professionality” and to see/imagine what the future holds.

    This interactive resource is practice for what lies ahead. Maybe not in my lifetime (but I hope so) but in someone’s lifetime and with all our input, the successive updates (doubt there will ever be a “final product”) should not only enable us to do more and be more but it will hopefully bring our world together enough to be better able to work out our differences without so much physical violence.

    My .02…


  97. Slartibartfast Magicthise says:

    I didn’t know Robbie Dingo did the “Better Life” video! Probably because I’m fighting too many tears in my eyes by the time the credits run.

    Robbie, I want to thank you for all the joy I get from my growing plant. I still water it every day, even though it’s reached its maximum height. Got any virtual harvesting tips?

    Excellent video. I have a hard enough time building, much less filming at the same time, but you’ve inspired me (and hopefully many others) to try to do great things here. I never really “got” that song until now.

    Now I understand…

  98. Dirk Felix says:

    #59 Daedalus Young

    Sorry Bubba, but your misinformed, unless of course youre a lawyer. Are you? DMCA actually provides the means in which creativity can grow. If someone uses an creative or intellectual property, they must have a signed agreement to its use and also state this within the confines of standard legal statments.

    My comment was about this and other images that have been used by Torley without the legal statements, which give it the impression that one or many have not been legally used and in the intended context.

    Lets look back at last week…. even Torley thanked us for comments. πŸ˜‰

    Mine is a simple question, does there exist prior permission ot use protected material? Answer is simple: Yes -or- No.

    Being a creative I would and do support the DMCA and the Copright Act of 1976. Maybe you have insight that can clear this up. Transparency of actions and intent is a god thing. πŸ˜‰

  99. Iexo Bethune says:

    Wow, what an amazing vid. Almost made me cry. =^.^=

  100. Masami Kuramoto says:

    @ Dirk Felix

    From the Second Life TOS:

    “You agree that your creation of Content is not in any way based upon any expectation of compensation from Linden Lab.”

  101. Rimmy says:

    I’m reminded about why I enjoy playing: Robby’s film brought tears to my eyes and has inspired me to continue with “Rimmy”.

  102. Rod Longcloth says:

    Wow, a truly inspiring video. I happened across SL purley by chance, being mainly buinsess oriented in my real life I decided to check the business aspect of this world. Well after some struggles and trying to find my own way I started to really like the things I was seeing and wanted to be a part of it. I started building – and became addicted. Took 1 little class (I already knew how to make a prim) and ended up experimenting and experimenting. I started to make friends from all over the world that started giving input. My buildings started getting better – then I needed accessories, could see things in my mind but could not find in world. So would just build it. Started getting compliments, started selling a few things. On February 14th, 2007 I had a heart attack and freaked out. I have worked my entire life and am in relativley good shape but the stress of my RL caught up with me. Now I was forced to take some time off and recuperate. I have never been off work for more than 3 consecutive days in my life since the age of 14 – thought I would go crazy. Ended up being on SL most of the time, bought some land in Fairchang world and met Garth Fairchang. He gave input, guidance and was always a great resource for me doing what my mind told me could be done. People would just stop by my land and watch me build and give suggestions. Met some long time builders that taught me tricks and gave ideas on prim management. Most of my visitors became friends that still talk to on a regular basis. Have friends from Greece, Switzerland, Germany and Poland. Love hearing about the different lives people were living. Had a big snake come by one time and help me on a script that was not working properly. Had a small kid make a script for me to open a garage door realisticly. Had a tattoed vampire teach me so much about texturing. I have never done anything more than word processing and spreadsheets on computers – now I build (using only SL tools), make most of my own textures in Photoshop, make some really cool furntiure that fit my homes just perfectly and can even manipulate scripts to do what I want. Even recently while on my evening stroll around my small part of the SL world was approached by yet another stranger who wanted to let me know how much he admired my buildings and realism that I put into them and asked me to help create a Police Station – thought this would be fun and it grew from a simple 2 floor police station that now houses Police and Sheriff departements as well as an upper floor that people are clammering all over the place to hold meeting and education forums in. The lot used to get about 30-50 visitors a day and since grand opening about 1900 people everyday. Many of those send notes to me telling me what a great place it is. It makes me proud and feels good. I am back to my RL work and trying to get caught up, but everyday I cant wait to get a little more time to create or at least get on and check on all my new friends and see how everyone is doing. Do the bugs suck – yes, but when times are good and I get caught in my own little world I can build for hours (have pulled 1 28 hour striaght marathon) and just unwind and let all my creativity that has been building for years come out. The hardest part is hitting the quit button. Most times after building – I just stand back and look at what I have created in disbelief. I dont want to leave I just want to see it during all the sun phases. And now I am starting art, taking some picture in SL and manipulating like I saw above – and even that blows me away. Who would have ever thought that a 47 y.o. old man – accountant and workaholic, could make a building disappearing walls and see through floor with his own art on the walls and on the floors – I never did but SL has given me that and I am a much better rounded person. Thanks Garth, Marce, Xatlan, Drakken, Ztarlie and all the others who inspired and kept me going – I love it and it keeps me sane :). Sorry about the ramling but just wanted to put my 2 cents in. Later all.

  103. Robbie Dingo says:

    Well. Cough. I don’t know what to say. I have never had such a full inbox!

    Torley says: “To this day, I swear one of the kewlest things about Second Life is that if you see something you like, contact is just an instant message away, and this facilitates telling someone β€œYOU ROCK!” Going beyond text chat, you can visit with them, in-avatar, and until such time we get β€œRL teleports”, I’d say this is pretty swell. And this sort of activity happens every hour in Second Life, involving strangers (possibly soon to become friends) you β€œhave never really met”.

    What he doesn’t really go on to say, is what kind reaction this may have upon the creator. Personally, I am feeling very motivated by the comments to roll my sleeves up and do something else THANKS! – In the meantime:-

    Many people wrote to me to say that they were sorry that the Sim used in ‘Watch The World(s)’ was wiped as they wished that they could have explored it for themselves, firsthand 😦

    Although I know it is not nearly the same thing, but here are some of the out-takes that were not used in the film. This is my way of saying THANK YOU for all of the kind and supportive IM’s and comments… they are all very much appreciated.

  104. Robbie Dingo says:

    (please click my name above for the link).

  105. Flaar Nemeth says:

    Robbie…. Utterly awesome, man. Excellent.

    Torley…. Thanks for bringing it to us, and thanks for the perspective.

    You both ROCK!

  106. Dirk Felix says:

    #64 Masami Kuramoto

    Jeez, does anyone read and actually understand before posting? This question was directed to Torley for using material not owned by him or LL. Anyone that uses without written permission and compensation is in violation of DMCA. Even Robbie is on the hook for using Don Mcleans music. You could argue that there is no loss or harm since this was intended for non-commercial use, but when a LL employee places it here as a promotion for commercial gain the rules change.

    Does this have anything to do with TOS? No, b/c this isnt within the SL web environment. TOS can not govern or replace international copyright law. This BLOG is not the website that you need to afirm TOS.

    If violations exist in public view this may jeopardize any and all creative expression within the Second World web environment.

    I do think what Robbie did was cool and I also think that this use can redflag every customer of SL as possible vilolators. πŸ˜‰

  107. Emondrell Raymaker says:

    @ 58 – Totally agree. This video should replace ‘Building Suzanne Vega’s Guitar’ in the Spotlight section, which needs a bit of revamping anyway. It’s always a pleasure to see what creativitiy people get up to in SL (And TSL).

  108. Web Page says:

    You brought up and then “glossed over” the subject of bugs.

    For shame. Not to use any metaphors or poetry, the vast number of bugs and asset issues are killing enjoyment of sl for many people on a daily basis. Windlight is an expense for Lindenlab, and although it does help secure their place as the best looking multi user 3D space, it’s dangerous to add features to such a problematic platform and many will say the money could have been spent for short term goals (ie stability).

    Having used Windlight, one of the major problems was how it affected shiny objects. Was some undisclosed irony involved in the reference? It’s odd enough to have indoor scenes subjected to the current subdued shiny and lighting effects. I’m hoping Windlight doesn’t destroy indoor building and builds altogether.

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  110. Lottie Barbosa says:

    You guys are awesome!
    Thank you for sharing….WOW!

  111. Oryx Tempel says:

    You make me believe in Second Life all over again. Live the dream, indeed! Your words and the Starry Night video nearly brought me to tears. Thanks for making my day.

  112. FifthPegasus says:

    Wow this is a really well done piece. Ironicy my wife’s favortie painting too.

  113. Dytska Vieria says:

    Requesting a Sim Roll Back for wherever that was created! It was beautiful!

  114. Dave Powell ("Times Sands") says:

    Robbie’s vid and Torley’s words…Me crying right now.

  115. Calin McKinney says:

    Thank you for giving us a forum to share and partake of the genius that can be found around the world. Robbie…your film lifts the human spirit!

  116. Bren Ferris says:

    I told a college art instructor that it is so nice to talk with other people who love art, who understand where you’re coming from and don’t make you feel like you’re the only freak!
    I’ve often wondered why I am drawn to art and the art world and artists and creativity. I’m guessing the answer lies in a desire for personal freedom of expression and a deeper passionate understanding of ourselves and each other.
    For me art is like a strong magnet and I have found that same magnetism within SL!
    Your article actually brought a lump to my throat and a tear to my eye when I realized how precious the gift of creativity is and the excellant (always in need of improvements therefore our artistic challenge) vehicle we have for expressing it on the web and in SL!

  117. Darius Lehane says:

    A few days ago I had the pleasure of seeing the actual painting in New York at the Met, and was blown away by it. This video is amazing, and I am a cynical person. LL should buy the island and preserve it.

  118. Aeris Shenlin says:

    as an artist, I treasure the canvas that Second Life has become for me. I am screenie-addicted and thrive on the beauty I find. Thank you for posting this exquisite video – it brought a tear to my eye.

  119. pantaiputih korobase says:

    did not know where all I have hair that can stand up πŸ™‚

  120. Tsu Goodliffe says:


    Once things are placed on the internet they get shared so quickly its almost impossiable to stop it from being shared, So Voliution or not its aready made public to millions of users and millions of Servers….
    Thats cyber space for you..
    also Torley is a she….

  121. Tegg B says:

    Just Cool Torley & Robbie……………. πŸ™‚

  122. Sven Okonomi says:

    Only 1 word could discribe this: Goosebumps..

  123. kerunix flan says:

    hooooooo waaaaaaaaa !

  124. Alessandra Kingsford says:

    I love this post .. the videos .. the thoughts… the emotions. SL has been an amazing discovery of self through color, design and most important people.

  125. This is the thing that touches me about this: (and I didn’t read all the comments so please forgive me if I repeat someone)

    One lonely painter has reached across time. This is something we all want to achieve. Reach across and communicate to someone beyond the distance our voices can travel.

    Vincent reached by painting, Don “heard” and with his tools in his time period, took it and reached again.

    Now Robbie has “heard” and with the tool of his time, he reaches.

    There is no doubt in my mind that in the future, some now-unimaginable invention will cause someone to “hear” all three of these people’s souls, add to it and continue to relay it.

    And in all cases, they add to the message, without ever disturbing the orginals.

    That to me, is amazing.

  126. Grazel Cosmo says:

    A very good post Torley.

    Robbie, that was an awesome video and an awesome build, both from the technical and artistic viewpoints.

    To Dirk, calm down some and quit nitpicking. Torley and Robbie are the only ones who need to be concerned with permission to link to Youtube (which as was pointed out if he did not want to give implicit permission to reuse he could have chosen in Youtube not to allow outside linking to the source). Youtube doesn’t allow you to save videos for a reason after all. Also Torley gives full credit for the piece to Robbie and since he commented here I’d say that any concerns about permission are resolved. Written agreements for permission do not have to accompany the used material, just be on file (after all you don’t see half a newspaper filled with all the agreements to use the content within them).

  127. Masami Kuramoto says:

    @ Dirk Felix

    Which part of “LL need not compensate” didn’t you understand? The content presented here was photographed in-world. By using Second Life, the creators have agreed to the TOS which basically say that if you build something cool in SL, the folks from LL can put pictures of it on their website for promotion purposes WITHOUT ANY COMPENSATION. So the answer to your original question is: Yes, THEY have permission, no matter who actually took the pictures. THEIR software delivered the content in the first place. In fact they might very well be the only ones permitted to use in-world photos at all. Actually your beloved DMCA made this possible.

    Don McLean’s song is a different matter of course. That’s something you might want to discuss in the comments section of YouTube.

  128. Jo Earp says:

    #82… beautifully captured the importance and meaning of work like Robbie’s. His creative (and witty) tribute to SL’s potential and the contribution of other artists moved and inspired me, (ty Robbie).

    And well done Torley for *understanding* how important it is to move SL forward both emotionally and artistically…… moved things along a notch here, once again.

  129. Claudia Seurat says:

    SL is like a novel we all write each day…the only limit to the story we tell is our own imagination. Robbie Dingo has shown himself to be a master of expression in this world. Thank you Torley, for bringing this to us all.

  130. Franja Russell says:

    Between the video and the music, I was lifted out of the mood of dark disappointment brought on script glitches like being unable to embed a new notecard into an existing one.

    I’d blamed my lack of scripting experience and spent almost 10 hours re-examining every line of every script and every notecard and every Properties tab card.

    When I found out that so many other people, even experienced scripters, had the same trouble, I felt very let down that Linden Lab had not notified people on log-in that there was a problem and they were working on it.

    Thank you for sharing that absolutely wonderful video and the music.

  131. Mica Cazalet says:

    Dear Torley,

    What a wonderful video and post. At first I thought Second Life wasn’t for me. I kept finding myself in awkward and frustrating situations. I kept returning because I couldn’t resist, and because of this have learned more about myself and have experienced the amazing creativity and talent of fellow residents. What a gift, to be given the opportunity to try on a personality, look or occupation, or to speak with someone on the other side of the world!

    The updates can feel frustrating but I’m not complaining. I have much appreciation for Linden Labs and Second Life.

    Thank you very much.

  132. Skyeison Uriza says:

    As many have already stated, the beauty of this video made me cry. There are no words that could justly describe the emotions evoked by visualizing such a beautiful work of art brought to life in SecondLife.

    Robbie Dingo, you are amazing!

  133. Sandry Logan says:

    Stunning. Thank you for sharing.

  134. Larinda Cordeaux says:

    With gratitude … thank You for the long hours and dedication to creative expression that went into this inspirational work! If Love be a river then this is surely a spring.
    I have a dream almost nearly as beautiful every time I log on that begins like this….
    The Windlight viewer is now available.
    If only in my dreams

  135. Zulqadi Saarinen says:

    I am an artist in rl, and that vid by Dingo is just amazing. That gives me an idea to, maybe, “rebuild” all masterpieces in sl. Any skin makers, how about Mona Lisa πŸ™‚

  136. followmeimthe Piedpiper says:


    thank you Robbie
    thank you Torley

  137. BeeBee Brouwer says:

    Wow, it’s things like this that make SL a world filled with laughter and tears that are often more “real” than real.


  138. Greta Umarov says:

    An amazing piece of work..with a new medium for artists to play in. We can celebrate the great masters, and then turn around and create some masterpieces ourselves!



  139. Kelly Green says:

    The film was lovely and very well done. Thanks to Torley for sharing and to Robbie for creating it.

    SL is very much a canvas for artists in many ways and yes people do complain about shiney bits added while other things appear neglected. but consider this you have been painting with nicely made brushes and someone hands you a box of magnificent colors but only allows you to use your fingers now with which to paint. The colors are great but the quality likely will suffer…

  140. MoonGazer Perhaps says:

    It’s the artist’s of Second Life, like Robbie, and the wonderful, yet diversified, personalities of it’s residents, that are my reason for being here. The WONDER!
    Thank you for sharing!

  141. Delta Czukor says:

    @ 77
    Nope. Torley’s a he. Take a look at his YouTube videos.

    And that was a wonderful video! There should definitely before creativity like this in SL.

  142. Dyslexia Sprawl says:

    Beautiful. But how come I can’t go there and explre it for myself? Why are we restricted to watching a 2d, non-interactive movie about it?

    Seriously, amazing work Robbie, but how about adding that extra dimension?

  143. Has Don McLean filed a DMCA yet? Great video but now it goes into dangerous territory for LL and SL

  144. matika Wombat says:

    I don’t reply to blogs issues or announcements, because there is plenty of oppinion out there that will see my side and my underside πŸ˜‰
    However this, is not even an oooh or an ahhh, I am speachless, it is absolutely beutiful and breathtaking. Called me a whimp but I cried my eyes out, it trully touched me.
    Blessings, and, many thanks πŸ™‚
    matika Wombat

  145. zidaya zenovka says:

    Thank you, Robbie, for showing folks just how incredible SL can be…and thank you, Second Life, for changing my life, and helping me find a new family.

  146. Alora Perse says:


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  148. Kiki Stardust says:

    Fabulous video, shame I am at work and have no soundtrack, but all the same it’s wonderful. It does sadden me however that certain people on this blog can’t appreciate good work and will spoil a enjoyable moment by quibbling over royalty rights etc…May I suggest you let LL worry about that and just comment on the art, you will find you have a much better day! πŸ™‚

  149. Rob A says:

    Dammit Torley, you made me cry πŸ˜› That’s just the most beautiful video.

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  151. Minnie Trottier says:

    Second Life is loved. Its obvious by the video and the people that posted comments here.
    Awesome job Torley and Robert. Congratulations on a beautiful movie.

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