What if art had a child?


A postscript . . . Sharni Azalee, the creator of the “Love’s Eternal” 3D art pictured below, donated the L$5,000 prize she was awarded for the Curator’s Prize in the UWA June round to the Second Life Relay for Life event (which raised a record $371,670 in SL this year) for the American Cancer Society. Sharni sent me the LM to the location along the RFL track where the luminary lantern for her donation sat. I went there and sat beside it for a long time. It was so heartwarming to see Twinkle on another journey, this time to help fight cancer. Gazing down the endless line of luminaries along the RFL track made me feel like I was sitting beside a flowing river, and so I made this machinima: Hope Is Like a River. Another person who had a luminary lit for her along the track wrote to me later to say that as she watched, she couldn’t stop crying, tears of hope and happiness she said, and I wish the same for you.


What if art could reproduce? Not a copy of itself, but a future generation. An offspring who would take your breath away in how closely it resembles you, but totally different too, who is in its own right a unique masterpiece?

This has happened not just once, but twice, in recent time to my machinima Twinkle’s Journey which I submitted in the University of Western Australia MachinimUWAIII competition earlier this year.

Shortly after the competition, Sharni Azalee gave me one of the sweetest gifts anyone has ever made for me: a 3D virtual build of a jar, the kind children put fireflies in on a summer night. Inside the jar are images from the Twinkle’s Journey machinima:  the Bluebell Wood setting, along with Twinkle’s teddy bear and toys snuggled inside the hollow of the Old Oak Tree. Fluttering around inside the jar are a host of twinkling fireflies, and perched atop the jar is a bright blue butterfly underneath a twinkling star.

Sharni submitted the build as an entry called “Love’s Eternal” to the UWA 3D Open Art Challenge for the month of June. You can see her  build, along with 58 others, at UWA here. Or come see it at my home, The Bay Area, here. (I love visitors! All my builds and lands are always open to wanderers.)

Here is a picture of “Love’s Eternal,” using the same windlight settings I used for my Twinkle’s Journey machinima. I sometimes sit out at night on the hill and just look at this build against the starry sky for endless moments. Doodle, the dragon who lives with me, and a faun who wandered into my land last year sometimes keep me company.

Update 7/3/2011: Sharni Azalee was awarded the Curator’s Choice Prize for “Love’s Eternal” today at the awards ceremony for the UWA 3d Open Art Challenge for June. Congratulations, Sharni! Free Wee Ling, Curator of the UWA 3D Open Art Challenge and creator of  gallery , had this to say about the award:

This month’s Curator’s Choice recipient is well known to UWA Challenge artists. Her work is consistently beautiful, engaging, highly detailed, and meticulously crafted. Sharni was the recipient of last year’s Grand Finale prize in the non-scripted category. Her entry this month was directly inspired by the remarkable story of “Twinkle’s Journey,”  an entry in MachinimUWA III by Bay Sweetwater that has taken on a life beyond with a number of tributes and outreach activities.  Sharni’s rendering of a terrarium packed with delicate flowers and a teddy bear in a hollow tree is a poignant reminder of the story that has touched so many.

The second offspring of the Twinkle’s Journey machinima was Pallina60 Loon’s masterful machinima, Magic Soul of Prims, which accompanied her intriguing build of shadows at SL8B, which ends today. For a few short hours more, you can see her build at SL8B here.

At the very end of the machinima, she dedicates the short story in the film to Twinkle. Awwwwwww. Her build and machinima are all about shadows. In her build at SL8B she included an interactive click-and-shadow feature I played with for an entire morning. (I’ve got a blog post in the oven on how to set SL shadows; it’s not always easy, especially on a mac.)

Pallina60’s machinima is stunning and timeless. As she told me when we met at SL8B, this is a story for all children everywhere.

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