Stranger in a Strange Land

If you’re wondering if I know this good looking guy, I sure do. Bram Ellison has been a friend of mine for quite a while, and while his avatar’s attractive, it has more to do with his personality than how is avatar looks. Generous, kind, intelligent, and gentlemanly to a fault, Bram is the kind of guy you are honored to have in your friends list. It doesn’t hurt that he’s easy on the eye ;)

“I pretended to be somebody I wanted to be until finally I became that person. Or he became me.” ~ Archibald Alexander Leach, aka Cary Grant

Stranger in a Strange Land

On September 19th, 2006, I logged in to Second Life for the very first time. Until the exact moment my avatar appeared I had never heard of a virtual world and had no idea I had just entered one. I thought I was signing up for an online class. Surprise!

Since part of the purpose of the guest blog is to talk about how we developed our persona, I thought you might want to know just how embryonic I began. I had never even been in a chat room! So the realization that all around me were 3D representations of real people talking and interacting in real time was a bit overwhelming. “Dude. You are sooo not in Kansas,” pretty much summed it up. But I decided to stick around to figure out where the heck I had landed and if there were flying monkeys involved. Turns out there were, and one of them was me.

 Stranger in a Strange Land

My first take on the place was that you weren’t supposed to be yourself at all, and I was shocked when people kept asking personal questions. I mean look at the name: “Second Life.” It practically screams, “Try something new!” So I set out to define who I wanted to be in my second life. That was too lofty a goal, so I settled for WHAT I wanted: a boat, and to not look like I was begging for bananas.

I got a small boat to live on and was a happy lil’ Jimmy Buffett-blaring simian for a while until I began to get handy with the shape tools. There are 77 selections in 9 categories and there’s a bit of work involved in getting to know and use them well. But you have to start someplace, and the person I picked to emulate for physical cues was Cary Grant. The man just oozed style, and the better I got at shaping the more I appreciated his taste and grace. I started paying more attention to clothes, skins, accessories, and hair. (I also found out you could buy shapes! Oh well.) But through all the Cary channeling, I always came home to the boat, beach, and Buffett.

Stranger in a Strange Land

What you are seeing in these pictures is my culmination of the two styles. Flick Carlucci took these photos at very cool sim called “Virtual Decay.” She’s got a great eye and is fun to work with. No matter what I wear from tux to tennis shoes, I’m all about the best possible design and texture. (Read, picky as hell.) I like simple classic colors and styles with a casual slant and the shirt/jacket combo and the jeans from AOHARU fit the bill nicely. The boots are my favorites from Jeepers Creepers. The shape is still my own creation and I think the Redgrave skin suits it well. The hair is from Truth and I totally dig it. Oh, the sweet Rickenbacker M330 guitar is from Nortique Guitars. Now here we are four years in. I’m still on a boat and I know who I am. Jimmy Cary Grant Buffett, aka Bram Ellison. Or maybe he’s me. ;)

Stranger in a Strange Land

We are the people our parents warned us about. ~ Jimmy Buffett

Hair: Elysium, espresso by Truth Hawks for >TRUTH<

Skin: Cruz, deep tan by Emilia Redgrave for Redgrave

Eyes: Rainy Day by Pompeja Rossini for Damiani

Shape: Bram Ellison for Bram Ellison

Jacket with Shirt: Black with white shirt by machang Pichot for AOHARU

Jeans: Vintage dark by machang Pichot for AOHARU

Necklace: Stone Cross by JesseAitui Petion for AITUI

Tattoo: Northwest Spirit by JesseAitui Petion for AITUI

Boots: Oslo, black by Eponymous Trenchmouth for Jeepers Creepers

Guitar: Rickenbacker 330 Guitar by K1TTY Munro for Nortique Guitars

Photography by Flick Carlucci.

Photos taken at Virtual Decay.