Friday, 8 April 2011

Relay For Life - Fantasy Faire Central - Cancer Charity Event in Second Life

View of some of the fantasy style builds made by members of

I was browsing the profile of my friend and business associate, Elizabeth Tinsley (Second Life name) the other day and noticed TRU Textures had been knocked off her top spot in her profile picks (a place to place some of your favorite locations in Second Life)

I didn’t stop to take the time to read what the “top spot” on her favorite places was.
I only scanned enough to note she was the coordination liaison of "some event" and went immediately into ‘me mode” and wrote to enquire why she had removed TRU from her profile in favor of some event she was coordinating whilst droning on a little about how hurt I was. (yadda yadda)

My problem is I speak/act before I think.....

Anyway, in her reply she apologised and explained she had been volunteering her time in helping to organise the third Second Life charity event for SL Relay For Life (American Cancer Society)

This year it was a fantasy themed faire spread out over four sims featuring some of Second Lifes most skilled and artistic designers displaying offerings ranging from clothing, skins and avatar accessories to builds, avatars and horses.

Of course, I felt dreadful once I had learnt it was a non profitable event to raise funds for cancer research.

During our conversation in Skype were I, as usual, babbled on about sales, income, profits and the growing concern of maintaining an income in the global recession, I stopped and allowed Beth to explain a little of what this event was about and the money it had already raised.

I discovered in the short week they had been running the faire they had already raised $15,000 USD and projected by Sunday (when the event ended) that figure could reach $20,000 all made with donations from members of Second Life either buying or selling products and donating 100% of their proceeds.

This picture doesn’t do it justice at all. (sorry)
From a designers POV its a good way to have your brand and products reach an audience whilst also providing a way to raise funds for Relay For Life.
From a customers POV its a superb chance to see some beautiful art and buy or bid on limited edition content which by default also allows you to donate to a worthy cause.

I don’t “do” Second Life. I haven't for 3 years or more now.
I have been a member for 7 years almost to the day and since SL became my job some 4 years ago,  I don’t have time to stop and "smell the flowers" or appreciate the view anymore.
I would go far as to say I don’t see the appeal of SL anymore.

But then if you never venture outside the four walls of your private island/business, you're not likely to are you? It’s all business to me when I log in....sadly.

Beth encouraged me to pay the faire a visit and I asked for a land mark.

I asked if she had contributed any of her jewelry designs which I know she had been working on for over a year or more and she explained she had sold some items.

And so I went to see what my eyes had been closed to for many years, the beauty of what Second Life can be with enough skill, talent and desire to create.

Firstly the 4 sims were busy, very!
It’s been a long time since I have seen so many people gathered in one place and the "business bitch" in me wished I had be aware of the event so I could have been involved too.

Good traffic is a rare treat for designers to have their name and products seen by new eyes.

My first port of call was to find Elizabeth store. I was going to buy something (and donate) but I wanted it to be through Beth (biased)

I found a few stores selling fantasy type structures and Medieval houses, some of them made with textures I had made and sold, which is always nice to see. :)

Earendilia Antiques & Garden Centre Made With “Kings Castle” texture set

I eventually found Elizabeths store at the faire, “Flippery” where you can see and buy unique artistic  jewelry which looks “hand made”

Here is a SLurl to the Flippery store at the faire

As a texture artist, I fell in love with the stained glass windows I assume Elizabeth made (she shows as the creator and it looks like her work)

 Frippery -whimsical jewelry for imaginative minds by Elizabeth Tinsley

Beautiful Textures - Esp the Stained Glass I think Beth Made.

At Elizabeths store store I noticed a sign which indicated an auction item.
I clicked for a note card which read:

Dear Friend,
Thank you for your interest in this very special auction item. Let me describe a bit more in detail what it is you are possibly bidding for. I am offering you a position as my muse. Be my inspiration for a set that is based on you. Think beyond your favorite metal or gemstone to what makes your heart soar and then let me capture that passion in prims and give it back to you. If this sounds like an adventure you would like to be a part of then I invite you to bid. I look forward to meeting the intrepid explorer who will win this prize and discovering what we will create together.

To view some of my work please feel free to visit my shop on Enchanted Mysts or my cottage gallery at Ode.

Seriously, I would love that!

I don’t wear SL jewelry (whats the point with my SL right?) but no one knows me better in SL than Elizabeth so to have some artistic jewelry born out of inspiration from me??? My ego is too large to turn that down! lol

So I went off to find the auctions and placed a bid on her item.

It didn’t really surprise me to see hers had raised one of the highest amounts of bids (L$10,500) so I placed mine and I hope I win it..I really do.

I told her I had bid and she was ecstatic and offered to do it anyway (incase I didn’t win) but that’s not the point. I want to be able to donate too, I want to win it fair and square and it’s for a good cause anyway.

Most people have been touched by cancer either directly or indirectly.

I had Malignant Melanoma, stage two 7 years ago.
My sister died of womb cancer on July the 4th 2009 aged 47 and my Grandma had breast cancer at 41.

Whilst I have always donated £5.00 a month from my bank account to Cancer Research, this was different, it was “tangible” It’s a “win win” deal.
You get to see and buy some amazing stuff AND donate to charity.

Some fantastical wings made of ivy vine and twigs... I loved these! If you're into fantasy and elves, these are so unique and full of imagination.

And these bracers Elizabeth made have already raised L$4500 for Relay For Life!

Bracers Created by Elizabeth Tinsley 100% Proceeds Donated to Relay For Life

Ancient Tree Cupping The Earth.

Finally, I found myself at the Memorial Gardens which had photos both real life and SL of Second Life members who had been lost to cancer or were still fighting it or had recovered from it.

Second Life Members and Cancer Victims.

This is when things fall into perspective for me and probably most people.

This is when the worries about sales, bills, competition and SL drama seem trivial, shallow and childish.

As I read some of the poems written for and about these people I cast my mind back to the conversation I had had in Skype with Elizabeth not 30 minutes previously.

I remembered my “speach” about my stresses and concerns over money and business and the economy in general.
I explained how stressful it was to try and maintain an income in a global recession and how depressing and uninspired business people were feeling in Second Life because of ABC...

....then it dawned on me, as I was banging on about my woes, Elizabeth had been working for free and had help to achieve a massive success with at times 150 people visiting the 4 sims all in aid of charity.

I felt shallow and selfish.

What good is money or success if you're dying?
What would it matter if we’re not managing SEO and “beating” the competition if I was diagnosed with cancer tomorrow?

None of it means a damn thing when you stop and realise how precious life and health is and how quickly it can be taken away from you.

Of course, these moments of clarity pass and our woes and daily stresses take their place as quickly as they came but the Memorial Gardens are good for that,  they make you stop, if only for a few minutes and reflect on what we “think” our burdens are compared to those who have died, or may die, or face the loss and tragedy of loosing someone they love to cancer.

SLurl to The Memorial Gardens

Pictures of those lost to cancer.

Here are some words found within the photo frames of the people displayed in the Memorial Gardens.

Wiccan Sojourner SL Cit 08/06/2004  - 12/ 2010

Passionate member of the RFL community , Amazing Designer / Owner of Bewitched Designs. Loving Friend to many. Truly a Legend of Second Life. 
Krista Brewer - Kaaden's Cancer Hero

I am Kaaden Carson, the Co-Captain of the Relay for Life Racers 2008 team.  This is a request to all of you to pray for this little girl.  

Krista is 11 years old as of May 2008 and a 2 time Brain Cancer Survivor since she was 4 months old. She is fighting Bone Cancer called Malignant Fibro Histiocytoma which there is NO CURE. Now she has her 3rd brain tumor.  On July 1, 2008, Krista started vomiting and was unsteady walking (after having really bad headaches). On July 2, they took her to her doctors.  There is a very aggressive tumor growing around the brain stem.  They are not recommending surgery, because of the great danger of side effects and the aggression of this tumor. The tumor is growing rapidly... 8 weeks before July 2 it was not there.  Her parents along with Krista have decided to look into options that they have been given for experimental chemotherapy.  She can't have any more radiation treatments and conventional chemo will not work on her anymore.  Either way, they are looking at months to live... probably 6 months at the most.

I was first involved in Relay for Life in 2002 when I was on Krista's team, The Brewer Bunch.  And every since then, RFL has been close to my heart.  I have had quite a few friends and family members suffer from, die from and survive cancer.  But this little girl whom I met at my church, has been and will always be my inspiration for doing everything that I can to help fight cancer.  Krista Brewer truly is my Cancer Hero.

UPDATE - Krista Brewer (May 15, 1997 - September 18, 2008) Krista became an real life angel on September 18, 2008.  Pray for her family and everyone around the world who are robbed by this horrible disease.

Daniel - October 2008
Nephew-in-law  of Random Padar, Daniel was 6 years old when he lost his battle with leukemia.

Ludinha Kamachi 5.27.10

She was my North, my South, my East and West, 
my working week, my Sunday rest,
my noon, my midnight, my talk, my song.
I thought that love would last forever; I was wrong.
--Radioactive Rosca
Leigh Zanzibar 8.9.08 -  7.18.10
From Leigh's profile 1st Life tab:

For what it's worth, this is me.
Some like me.
Some love me.
Few hate me.
I am what I am, and that's all that I ams..

If you love something set it free.
If it returns, it's yours.
If it does not, it never was.

Please visit the Fantasy Faire and donate what you can.

Its truly an amazing collection of art and skill and inspiring on so many levels.

You can go there bu clicking this link:

No comments:

Post a Comment