Ascend to Asperatus

Asperatus poster

Asperatus (by Beq Janus) – Above the rolling, turbulence of the thick cloud plains the silence is broken by the deep throbbing hum of engines. The mighty “Asperatus” fills the sky, once the preserve of super rich merchants, this mighty airship is now the mainstay of the small colony that drifts around it. Come walk amongst the clouds, explore unlikely airships and marvel at mankind’s ever ingenious (and frequently implausible) devices in this steampunk inspired city in the sky.

Meet Our Sponsors: Spyralle

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Spyralle is sponsoring the Faire again with the beauty of exquisite fractal creations. Kerryth Tarantal shares with us her reasons to relay, her earliest fantasy memories and her growth as a Second Life creator. You can read more in the last year’s interview here

This is not your first time sponsoring Fantasy Faire. Do you have personal reasons to support RFL? Do you want to share those with us?

I am a 3-time cancer survivor, three different cancers. I was diagnosed with the first one almost 19 years ago. The most recent was five years ago. I literally owe my life to the research that has been made possible by the donations of thousands of caring people, and I want to pass it forward. I am passionate about this cause in SL not just because of my own experience but because of the people I know whose lives depend on continued research. Also the people we have lost. And, of course, the joyful experiences I’ve had and the wonderful people I’ve met, being engaged with Relay for Life in SL. This is truly a joy and a labor of love.

How did you begin building in Second Life? What inspires you to create?

I started very small, making simple prim things for one of my first homes in Second Life. I rented a little island, and the ground was not flat. I had to make a prim foundation to put under my house. It was like magic, and I remember thinking “Wow! I can do this!” I kept trying things, and then I took a basic building class, and there was no turning back. I had always loved creating things in RL – I make costumes and textile art and fractals – but this was like magic! I find inspiration everywhere – colors, textures, shapes – anything visual. I have been a fractal artist for years, and I always dreamed of applying the images I made to textiles, to my wearable creations, but it’s hard to translate these intricate images into media like embroidery, painting, beadwork. Printing is expensive, and compared to pixels, it is dark and dull. Second Life is a world made of light, the native medium of my fractal art.

Creating things made of pixels seemed to be a natural direction.

What are you bringing to the Faire this year? Give us some sneak peeks or teasers!

I am working on half a dozen projects. Whichever ones are farthest along by the last weekend in April are the ones that will appear at the Faire. If you want a teaser, look at everything new I’ve come out with since the beginning of the year. Look at my blog. Look at the hunt prizes. Hunts are my lab, my workshop. The pictures I’m sending give some hints. One thing that is safe to say is that there will be headpieces – accessories to be worn above the neck. Exactly which ones will make the grade in time is something that is yet to be determined.

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What calls you to fantasy? When was the first time you encountered the genre and realized you enjoyed it?

If you count fairy tales, I don’t even remember the first time. I had read every fairy tale collection I could get my hands on when I was in elementary school. I discovered modern fantasy as a teenager. The Lord of the Rings, of course. It was like coming home. Yes, THIS! This is what I have always been looking for! This is the imagination set free. It didn’t hurt that fantasy was a genre in which people could be absolutely unapologetic about creating visual beauty.

What are you looking forward to most this year?

I am looking forward to being bowled over by the creative vision of everyone involved in Fantasy Faire. It is the most amazing, incredible visual feast one could ever hope to see. Every year I think, they’ll never top this. And then they do. To play a small role on that magnificent stage with all these wonderful, creative people is a delight and inspiration. It is the high point of my year in SL. And we have so much fun, don’t we?

Thank you, Kerryth, for taking the time to chat with us. We’re excited to see what you will bring to the Faire!

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Meet Our Sponsors: Dwarfins

The Dwarfin Creators: Judy Chestnut, Dante Spectre and Jaimy Hancroft.
The Dwarfin Creators: Judy Chestnut, Dante Spectre and Jaimy Hancroft.

The Dwarfins have joined us again in the Faire, this time by sponsoring Hope’s Horizon, which is also built by Jaimy Hancroft, one of their creators. Judy Chestnut, one of the busy trio behind these industrious creatures, tells us more about the ongoing story of the Dwarfins and shares a sneak peek of their Faire-wares! You can also read the Dwarfins interview of last year here to find out more about them in the words of Dante Spectre.

Dwarfins sponsored Fantasy Faire last year, and this year you have taken a whole sim into your sponsoring care. What made you decide to not only return, but go bigger?

We love Fantasy Faire, it’s our favourite event of the year and RFL is very important to all three of us, we support RFL whenever we can. With Jaimy being the creator of the Hope’s Horizon sim it just all seemed to fit so perfectly for us to be sponsors of the sim.

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How did you begin building in Second Life? What inspires you to create?

Although I do a little building myself and work on the animations for Dwarfins. Dante and Jaimy are the real creators of what you see, I’m the list maker as Jaimy likes to call me, so you get to see the creations on time because of my specialized nagging skills 🙂 We all contribute to the ideas for what happens with the Dwarfins and what direction we go with them. Dante does all of the scripting for Dwarfins and Jaimy creates all of the artwork. When I build or animate really anything and everything inspires me real life, movies and books. Also working in a creative team is inspiring in itself, one person will think of an idea and someone else will expand on it with their own vision.

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What are you bringing to the Faire this year? Give us some sneak peeks or teasers!

We have been planning, I think, since last year what we were going to release at Fantasy Faire this year, and you will of course see new things, we are keeping them a bit under wraps for now, but here’s a small teaser of what’s coming.

Dwarfins Sneak Peek

What calls you to fantasy? When was the first time you encountered the genre and realized you enjoyed it?

For us, Fantasy is a means to express those buried dreams and imaginations that come to us from time to time. It’s not a means of escapism, because the reality of running a fantasy game means our heads have to be grounded in reality all the time, but it does give us a chance to be wistful at times about a real or imagined time period that puts a spark in our eyes. Life can be mundane at times, and Fantasy is a great way of throwing a little brightly colored paint on an otherwise boring canvas.

The 3 of us discovered fantasy at different times of course, but the epicenter of all of our years of Fantasy enjoyment had to be the Lord of the Rings trilogy. It really made it all feel more alive for us.

Do you have a favourite Faire memory? What are you looking forward to most this year?

My absolute favourite thing at the Faire is meeting so many people, it’s incredible how many people attend the Faire, and we had such a good time last year.

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What is the latest news with the Dwarfins, how is their story developing?

We have grown and expanded so much since we launched Dwarfins a little over a year ago and we have no plans to slow down. This year you will see some new creatures introduced to Dwarfins as well as expansions to the items they need to have a fully functioning village. The Dwarfins are learning all types of new ways to create their own food and you will see many of those coming out this year. Lots more gameplay with new achievements coming out and other things both at the Dwarfins sim and that will be available for players on their own sims. There does seem to be a bit of trouble on the horizon for the Dwarfins, nature has not necessarily been balanced out yet, stay tuned for what is ahead!

Thank you, Judy, for taking the time to chat with us: we’re delighted to have the Dwarfins with us again!

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Calling the Film-Makers of Second Life – do you have a Fantasy Faire tale to tell?

We’ve talked about the Faire being a time to tell stories – and one of the ways we love to experience stories is through film and television – in our Second Lives as well as our Firsts.

And there have been some stunningly beautiful films created at Fantasy Faires in the past.

But it can be difficult to create films at the Faire when the regions are filled with people, and your framerate drops to … “What? What??? Oh I am so going to crash!”

So this year, we are going to give five Second Life film-makers/machinimists the chance to come into the Faire early and create their stories while the regions are still quiet.

Why only five?
Well, people are still building, and each film-maker will need to work with us to ensure that they are filming what is finished (or certainly ready to film!). And as this is the first year we have done this, we want to ensure that we are able to help you to the best of our abilities.

How do I apply?
Just contact Saffia Widdershins inworld or via email at saffia.widdershins@gmail.com by midnight Saturday 26th April.

Explain what you would like to film (whether you you want create a story with actors, an abstract pieces of a travelogue), and supply a link to a previous film or machinima you have shot.

 

There’s Hope in the Horizon

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“Hope’s Horizon was born in Tolkien’s mind.  The sim is inspired by the great city of Minas Tirith and I am dedicating this build to my dad, who passed away a couple years ago of cancer. He was a major Lord of the Rings fan and this was my chance to do something great to make him proud. The building stands high above everything and it is as if you are flying when you reach the top, you can see the surrounding Faire sims when you are standing there. I have put a blossoming tree at the top to represent life, and everything good in life. The tree is blossoming there in all its glory on top of this city in remembrance of our loved ones letting you all know that the spirit never dies…”

– Jaimy Hancroft

Meet Our Sponsors: Curious Kitties

Ameshin Yossarian, the creator of Curious Kitties, shares with us her reasons to sponsor the Faire and her early-found love for fantasy. She also talks of her background as an artist and teases us with her upcoming Faire releases!

This is your first year sponsoring Fantasy Faire. What made you decide to become a sponsor?

I’d have a harder time thinking of why not to be a sponsor! I absolutely love the Fantasy Faire & hope it can continue to be a part of Second Life & RFL every year!

How did you begin building in Second Life? What inspires you to create?

I began building in Second Life when a customer from another popular virtual world at the time (in 2004) suggested I give SL a try.
This is my 10th year in Second Life now!

What inspires me to create in general is a natural drive. I’ve been an artist for longer then I can remember (I’m also a freelance artist/designer by trade) so I generally love to create in various mediums one of them luckily being 3D & textures which comes in really handy when creating in Second Life!

I really love it when people can enjoy wearing & using the art I create, its very exciting even after all this time!

What are you bringing to the Faire this year? Give us some sneak peeks or teasers!

This year I’m bringing TONS of items to the Faire! Magical, Elven, & Original Fantasy Genres!

These new items are top secret & will be revealed at the Faire! Accessories, clothing & avatars using some new methods & new features! Plus some of the more classic designs for the more traditional Second Lifers!

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What calls you to fantasy? When was the first time you encountered the genre and realized you enjoyed it?

The first time I encountered the fantasy genre was probably before I had much understanding of the actual world. Probably starting at around 1~2 I enjoyed childrens picture books about fairies, mermaids, elves, goblins etc.

I just generally love anything fantasy! Its unique & wild. The fantasy genre doesn’t have any really hard set limits so I love that!

Do you have a favourite Faire memory? What are you looking forward to most this year?

I don’t have a favourite Faire memory, but thats actually a good thing. I’ve been attending the Fantasy Faire every year & theres always special memories each time. The Faire & Second Life have been evolving, and its always extremely exciting to see an entirely new & unique Fantasy Faire each year!

Thank you, Ameshin, for taking the time to chat with us. We’re honoured to have you join us again at the Faire!

Once Upon A Time …

That’s the way all the best stories begin, isn’t it? And Fantasy Faire is no different.

So we could say that once upon a time, there were lands of many enchantments … the Fairelands. And in the Fairelands were regions of great and fascinating beauty, and many stores with wonderful wares to sell. There was music and laughter and a police that was small in stature but ferocious at upholding the law and at inflicting fines for infringements.

But there it all just begins, for Fantasy Faire has always been a place for stories … for taking the “Once Upon a Time” and then creating the story to follow … a story that every individual visitor to the Faire could write for themselves.

This year the Faire will be celebrating those stories in a variety of ways!

MACHINIMA
First of all, if you are a machinima artist and want to tell a story created at Fantasy Faire, there will be special access for FIVE machinima artists in the days leading up to the event when the sims will be quieter. We will be sharing more details of this soon.

PHOTOGRAPHY
Then there will be a PHOTO COMPETITION with very special prizes. We are looking for the photographs that best capture the spirit of each of the eleven sims – and the winners will be included in a calendar (with credits for the photographers) that will be created in real life using Cafe Presse and sold to raise money for Relay for Life. So this year, people really will be able to take the Faire home with them – and share it with their friends and family too!

But … eleven sims … eleven months. What of the twelfth? That one will be the photograph that – in the opinions of the judges – best encapsulates the spirit of the Faire. Not only will it be the image for the twelfth month – it will also appear on the cover of the calendar.

SHORT STORIES AND POETRY
As we had last year, there will be a short story competition – and this year there will be a poetry competition. Let the Faire inspire you to tell tales or compose ballads … the winners will appear in edition of Prim Perfect magazine, with a wealth of illustrations.

BALLET
In advance of the opening of the Faire, a special ballet will be staged and recorded. You’ll be able to see this on the blog and elsewhere during the Faire.

ROLE PLAY
Perhaps the most exciting development is that a series of tales will be unfolding directly at the Faire itself, with three established roleplaying groups bringing their stories to the Faire. Each will tell a story over part of the Faire; there’ll be opportunities for Faire visitors to become involved, to watch key events in the stories, and to follow the progression of these tales through news bulletins on Fantasy Faire Radio, and through special pages in the Events section of the Fantasy Faire blog.

NeoVictoria in Asperatus
The NeoVictoria Roleplay Group presents “The Revenge of Professor Timmons”.  A renegade aristocrat and an evil scientist with revenge on their minds are using illicit Strand-world technology to create a murderous clockwerk automaton.  After damaging the power-center of the NeoLondon Cathedral, they decamp to Planet Asperatus and the NeoVictorians follow to bring them to justice! Beginning on 1 May in NeoVictoria SIM, they will be bringing the story to the Fairelands on Monday, 5 May when their intrepid band of roleplayers land in the sky-city of the Fairelands: Asperatus!

The Rickety Weasels
In Wiggenstead Mooring, between the lagoon and the tavern, live a group of feral kids who call themselves “The Rickety Weasels”. They ferociously protect the four Guardians of the Elemental Stones, which keep the balance of the Fairelands.

Little do they know that, no far from there, the Shadows are growing stronger and greedier, and that their leader, The Dark Shadow, covets the Guardians of the Elemental Stones. For the Stones could give him Power, and into Darkness plunge the Fairelands forever.

Trade Winds Pirates
A group of desperate pirates have found themselves stranded in Blackwater Glenn, desperately seeking funds to repair their ship. What lengths will they go to to accomplish their goal? You’ll certainly find a warm welcome in their impromptu tavern – but will you also find your pocket lightened?

So come and join us at the Faire … we can’t promise that you’ll live happily ever after … but we will do our best to make sure that you find the most amazing stories to see, to join, to tell and to take home.

A RFL of SL Event