I was wandering at the Rezzable Gallery yesterday and I came across the most interesting avatar.
Its impossible to tell from this photo but this beautiful avatar is very small, moves around in a rolling fashion and has incredible detailed moving bits and bobs. Yoa Ogee is the creator and I was thrilled to happen upon her in my travels. (I keep wanting to refer to this creature as "her" and I don't really know why. Maybe because the fish is pink? I don't know but gender in SL is a whole other post, no?) Anyway I complimented Yoa on the avatar and we chatted a bit before s/he passed me the landmark to the store where I was promised many more unusual avatars could be found.
When I got to the store, owned by Yeti Bing and Yoa Ogee, I was instantly mesmerized. There are many fun, unusual and decidedly non-human avatars available at very low prices. Many are under L$100, in fact. Some are simple shapes that move and color shift. Others are animated creatures that range from cute and adorable to something you dreamed about after a late night of way too much beer in a smoky blues bar. Before I could even begin to stop myself I bought 5 of these inexpensive packages of avatar fun.
This tiny round avatar shifts colors.
An atom? That moves? Come on, stop!
This little cutie shifts colors and the tentacles respond to the Linden winds.
A pink semi transparent tiny robot, with hearts over her head? Adorable.
This little dragonesque creature looks around with a funny semi-amazed look on her face.
It would have been easy for me to buy another dozen or so of these avatars. I stopped because I put myself on a budget, remember? (That little experiment is not going well, tyvm.) So the real reason I limited myself is I can't actually imagine living in any of these avatars for any length of time. This realization started me thinking about more unanswerable questions. But it all boils down to this -- in a world where we can be anything and do anything, why do so many of us choose to replicate real life?
Why *do* we create avatars that conform to a western standard of beauty? Why do people spend a lot of money to live in perfectly appointed McMansions? Why have a car in the driveway? Why have a driveway? Food? Kitchens? FFS Toilets? Why do we do this? Of course there are communities of people who live very differently but it seems to me those groups are the minority.
Before anyone points out the obvious I am absolutely guilty of this myself. Chestnut is a very realistic looking avatar, she lives in a uber realistic house in a sim where realism is mandated by the covenant. Lately I have been feeling more and more constrained by how very "normal" and "realistic" my SL has been. So on the odd chance I show up somewhere looking a little different or suddenly decide to live in a transparent 5 story tall planter with a model of the solar system on the roof, don't say I didn't warn you.