Friday, November 9, 2007
Fairy's Grove and Wraith Unsung
When Wraith Unsung began to explore Second Life three years ago, she discovered quickly that she could not create the fantasy characters she envisioned with the resources that were available at the time.
She therefore began to make her own clothing in SL. 'I wanted to be a Demoness or an Elf,' she confessed. Now in 2007 in SL, there are many vendors and designers that specialise in high fantasy, but in 2005, there was very little.
Wraith had no real intention of selling the clothes she created at first, but within a short time realised that she was not the only person in SL who would embrace her visions enthusiastically.
Wraith Unsung always was attracted to the artistic aspect of Second Life. From the very start, she was intrigued by it because 'everything here was created by the people playing the game.'
When she first explored Second Life, flexi-prims did not exist. She created painted clothes, using prims only for the wings. 'The idea of painting on a wireframe took a long time,' she confessed, although Wraith's idea of a 'long time' was no more than a couple of months.
As a true artist, she is driven to create and is prolific in her designs. Like all the artists I admire most in Second Life, she is not in business in Second Life for the money she can make but rather to pursue a vision.
'Fairy's Grove' is far more than a place where Wraith Unsung's fabulous clothes are sold. It is becoming one of the most significant locations for any one interested in fantasy of any kind.
It is a Sim where Wraith is attempting to bring together all the best artists in Second Life. Unlike many other Sims with multiple vendors, Wraith does not charge rent. 'I collect artists here in Aurora', she told me.
It is absolutely true. Each week, she announces the arrival of some one new. She is extremely generous in her patronage of new artists. 'I found people whose work is incredible and asked them to join my Sim. I do not charge rent and I only pick people whose work is in mind really great or have the potetnial to be really great.'
The reason for the creation of the fabulous 'Fairy's Grove' Sim was twofold. One was the desire to promote new artists, to give them a chance to display their work in a place where it will be seen.
As Wraith said, 'It is almost impossible to get recognition in SL when you are new and I hate that.'
The other reason for the creation of Fairy's Grove was one that many in Second Life, including myself have experienced.
Wraith declared that: 'I really had issues with shopping in SL and the inability to easily find good content. The typical model is store owner rents stalls, any one can rent them and place whatever they want to in there. So the result is not good
You go to a fantasy sim and there is really good content, but you have to wade through tons of crap to find it.'
Apart from that, 'you stumble upon some one whose work you love and you can never find it again.'
I experienced this frustration myself again and again in Second Life. Those who have not explored the world of Second Life may not realise how vast it is. New islands are being created regularly. Other Sims may be virtually abandoned after a time save by a few vendors.
In my first two months in Second Life, I discovered many amazing artists, spread over the entire world... now, I am delighted to find most of them at Fairy's Grove. Wraith has incredible vision as well as energy. She has collected many of the best successful fantasy artists as well as new aspiring talent at Fairy's Grove. It definitely is worth a visit. The artists are very diverse. Although Wraith has a style of her own, she is not afraid to embrace artists with different visions. Moreover, Fairy's Grove offers far more than clothing and accessories. For example, if you wish to own a horse or unicorn, you now will be able to purchase one there.
As far as Wraith Unsung's own designs are concerned, it would be a mistake to suppose that she only creates clothing for demons and fairies. She does have many extraordinary designs for fairies, demons and elves, but she has a Native American line as well. She creates clothing both for men and women, unlike some designers who virtually ignore male costumes in favour of more exciting female attire.
Wraith is a serious artist who spends at least 90% of her time in Second Life in her own workshop. She constantly looks for new inspiration and delights her customers and fans with new lines of clothing on a regular basis. Although there are many artists now who specialise in fantasy, Wraith's work remains unique. She is not afraid of competition and indeed, encourages it.
One of the marvelous features of Fairy's Grove are the live models who stand at the entrance. They stand on either side of the path in wonderful poses, displaying Wraith's designs. To be able to see a real avatar clothed in a costume is far more compelling than a mere picture. Moreover, it makes one BELIEVE in Wraith's world.
She has created a world within Second Life, a microcosm where the best artists can flourish. True to her convictions, she controls the content in Fairy's Grove by allowing only artists she considers to have talent and merit.