I’ve been feeling a little gorged on self-promotion lately, plus it’s been a while since I wrote about actually doing something in SL. I’ve been toying with the idea recently of doing a little inworld photography, and then I saw this post by Ziki Questi and just had to make a visit to ‘The Trace‘, a sim by Kylie Jaxxon.
This pastel landscape of open sands and grasses and meadow flowers is like stepping straight into a watercolour painting. The soundscape of distant waves and seagulls calling is almost superfluous as you pick your way between the tiny pools of water left in the sand; turn down the volume and you would still hear them in your head.
You might even hear the squelch of your feet and the slap of the grasses against your shins. The Trace is the sort of place in real life that you’d turn up to wearing sensible shoes but end up submitting to the urge to go barefoot, whatever the weather.
Here and there, The Trace is punctuated by wooden buildings. There are a few small homes, a potting shed, an open-air school with apples bobbing in a pale of water at the door. Toward the water’s edge, the homes are raised on stilts. A path runs through floodland grasses to a lighthouse (press the big red button by the door – who can resist those – to sound the fog horn).
Halfway up the hill, you encounter the island’s only stone building, a small, domed room with a mosaic floor and ceiling painted with angels. Outside, four sets of tables and chairs encircle a wood burner. The only thing missing is an espresso machine.
Dotted around the sim, a few other visitors make their own personal explorations, each making a physical connection to the landscape in their own personal way, such as standing still in quiet water.
With all this talk of SL being in its final couple of years (even Wagner James Au seems to think now this might be likely), it is easy to forget that places like this exist, and that they are completely perfect. There was nothing even approaching the quality of this when I joined SL… and now there is.
And, without a doubt, I couldn’t have picked a more easy place to take pictures in.