Midsummer Night’s Dream

Spyralle Pixie Bath in Shell & Crystal

Spyralle Pixie Bath in Shell & Crystal

Your back yard pixies will relish a dip in this elegant pool, just their size! If you don’t have pixies (I should be so lucky!) you might see local birds enjoying the bath. Tiny star sparks rise gently from waters edge, which may alarm the birds but not the pixies. You can turn the stars on or off with a touch.

The Pixie Bath is our prize for the Midsummer Night’s Dream Hunt (2L hunt) which runs through July 21.

Advanced lighting is recommended to view this object.

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The Glass Garden II

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiaries Set of 6 - White Tintable

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiaries Set of 6 – White Tintable

Spyralle’s first sales release from the Glass Garden series is a collection of six glass topiaries, out exclusively at the Midsummer Enchantment event, presented by Dark Passions. The collection is available singly by shape or as a set. We also have a prize in the event hunt!

Spyralle Amethyst Crystal Lamp with Falling Stars

Spyralle Amethyst Crystal Lamp with Falling Stars

Hunt prizes are 5L, when you find them. Look for masks in odd places.

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #3 - White Tintable

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #3 – White Tintable

Important! For all Glass Garden objects, viewing with Advanced Lighting is highly recommended. In fact, the Glass Garden objects lose most of their visual interest, especially the shine effects, without Advanced Lighting.

pyralle Glass Garden Topiary #1 - White Tintable

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #1 – White Tintable

This version has a white base color and is modifiable, so you can resize it and use the tools in your edit window to create different effects with color, transparency, shine and glow. Each package includes the basic white model, plus a tinted example of that model and a set of instructions. Our favorite is a black tint with purple highlights!

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #4 - White Tintable

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #4 – White Tintable

As always, for our modifiable products we recommend keeping the original as a backup.

Keep in mind that your viewer settings and surrounding conditions, especially Windlight, can make these object appear differently from one time to another, and there is no guarantee anyone else sees exactly what you see – but this is true for everything in Second Life.

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #6 - White Tintable

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #6 – White Tintable

Please note that this white, tintable version of the glass is not the same as the Glass Topiaries on display at our exhibit at SL15B. Those are textured with a fractal plasma in pale rainbow colors. You can also see them at Spyralle’s main store up in the Home & Garden pavilion, and, yes, they will eventually be released for sale.

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #5 - White Tintable

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #5 – White Tintable

The topiaries come out of the box with a height of about 2 meters and a land impact of 1 to 2. They can easily be sized up or down, although the land impact goes up very fast if you make them larger. Try varying the size when you place them in groups. They look charming scaled down to table size and grouped as a centerpiece or in a fireplace. Experiment with lighting, too!

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #2 - White Tintable

Spyralle Glass Garden Topiary #2 – White Tintable

We hope you enjoy decorating with this extraordinarily versatile set of ornaments from Spyralle!


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The Glass Garden

The Glass Garden by Kerryth Tarantal - SL15B

The Glass Garden by Kerryth Tarantal – SL15B – Teaser

Second Life is celebrating its 15th birthday this week with an extravaganza of parties, music, exhibits, gifts and special events. The community celebration part is taking place on a complex of over 20 regions hosting most of the scheduled events and resident exhibits.

I am thrilled to have been accepted again as an exhibitor at SL15B. I have always enjoyed these celebrations as opportunities to create larger art installations that can take a direction different from the parameters of Burn2, for which I also love to build.

As it happens, SL15B’s theme: Crystal Anniversary fit right in with a project I have been working on, more or less since Fantasy Faire. Nearly every other exhibitor interpreted “crystal” as natural crystals – mineral spars coming up from the ground. For my exhibit, The Glass Garden, presented by Spyralle, we chose instead to be inspired by human-created crystal: chandeliers, elegant tableware and the art of blown glass.

The Glass Garden at SL15B Spellbound, presented by Spyralle

The Glass Garden at SL15B Spellbound, presented by Spyralle

The Glass Garden project – the exhibit is only the beginning! – is an ongoing exercise in exploring glass and crystal materials  – transparent or translucent and reflective – for objects in a world where it is impossible to predict how any individual will see the objects at any given time and where alpha glitching can interfere with the most careful texturing. Viewer settings, computer systems, Windlight – all play a role in determining what these creations look like. Even for the same person with the same viewer, the appearance can change dramatically, depending on the virtual time of day and things in the surrounding environment.

The Crystal Birthday Cake at the Glass Garden

The Crystal Birthday Cake at the Glass Garden

For the Glass Garden items that will become Spyralle products, my solution is to make the Garden as user-modifiable as possible via the Edit functions of the viewer.  Owners will be able to tint and resize the objects, change transparency, glow and specular color to suit their tastes and viewing conditions. No HUD could offer the same flexibility as Second Life’s built in editing system, and Spyralle has always tried to go lean on scripts.

Chandelier Trees at the Glass Garden

Chandelier Trees at the Glass Garden

Some Glass Garden objects play with iridescence, emissive masks and other texture effects. Some releases in the series will have particle systems and other scripted actions, usually with an on/off touch toggle. This includes our prize in the Big Hunt at SL15B. shown below.

Crystal Lamp from the Glass Garden, presented by Spyralle

Crystal Lamp from the Glass Garden, presented by Spyralle

The Glass Garden is located on the Spellbound region at SL15B. For best viewing, set your viewer to Midnight and turn on Advanced Lighting and Sound. We also prefer to have parcel music off in order to hear the glass. Thank you for visiting!

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A Fine Vintage

Spyralle Orrery Radio 1926 - Bijou

Spyralle Orrery Radio 1926 – Bijou

Vintage Fair, presented by Pale Girl Productions, is one of my favorite virtual events for a lot of reasons, not least the enjoyment of researching some new kind of thing I haven’t made before, followed by the challenge of building it.  I’ve seen and admired radio-style parcel stream changers before, but all the ones I recalled harked back to the mid-20th Century or later, and I wanted to go earlier. Besides, Bakelite!

I knew I couldn’t go all the way back to the 1900-1920 period I’ve been doing the last couple of years: Radios were not common before the mid 1920s. Of course, once they started being produced commercially, they were often, yes, bakelite!

Spyralle Orrery Radio 1926 - Lune

Spyralle Orrery Radio 1926 – Lune

Spyralle’s bakelite 1926 radios – our exclusive for Vintage Fair – are an original design inspired by the kinds of radios people had in the 1920s and 1930s, also developed onward from Spyralle’s 1920 Orrery Clock with new mesh and a lot more bells and whistles, mesh and texture-wise.

Our radios serve as music stream changers for a parcel where you have the right to set the music stream. This version does not work on group owned land because they are no transfer and cannot be deeded to the group.  If there is enough interest in a transfer/no copy version, we will release one later.

Spyralle Orrery Radio 1926 - Celeste

Spyralle Orrery Radio 1926 – Celeste

The Orrery Radios join Spyralle’s long running Steampunkish Orrery series, most of which are off the market awaiting updates. A few are emerging from time to time at Spyralle Mauna Waipi’o.

Here is the part that turned out to be the most fun…

Behold! Electric Power!

Behold! Electric Power!

Yes, Orrery goes all Modern and 20th Century and Jazz Age! You can detach the cord (and conveniently included wall outlet) if you do not have a handy wall.

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Bakelite Delight

Spyralle Orrery Clock 1920 'Celeste' Edition

Spyralle Orrery Clock 1920 ‘Celeste’ Edition

Inspired by my long-time interest 20th Century design and bakelite artifacts of the era, I created this table or mantel clock as an exclusive release at the Twisted Summer Sale, aka “Sockdolanger”, now open. All proceeds from sale of the clock go to Relay for Life, which is supported by the Twisted folks at this event through the Relay Rockers RFL team.

The word ‘sockdolanger’ is a bit obscure to track down, but in the 1920s it was a popular slang word roughly equivalent to ‘awesome’ in current usage. Mind, I’ve picked up some  1920s slang in my life from family, but this one was new to me.  Maybe it never got all the way west to where they all settled. However, I do think the choice is awesome. Those Twisted folks are never afraid to be obscure, creative and tongue in cheek – as well as inventively evil (or evilly inventive) when it comes to puzzles and hunts, which is why we love them. So the theme of the summer sale is, more or less, the 1920s.  Cool!

We tend to lump certain decades and eras in with design styles that were not neatly self-contained by year numbers. For example, when people say “The Sixties”, they’re often really talking about a style that arrived somewhat late in that decade and persisted through most of the 1970s. Art Deco is the same way. Yes, there was a lot of what we recognize as Art Deco in the 1930s, but it began far earlier (don’t get me started on Biedermeier!) and persisted much later, not even counting “revivals” and “inspired by.” In the 1920s Art Deco elements were definitely creeping in, but the ‘Arts & Crafts’ and other traditional styles were still very strong – and many objects and fashions blend more than one style influence.

1920 Celeste Clock - back view

1920 Celeste Clock – back view

Spyralle’s 1920 clock is mostly Arts and Crafts, with just a bit of Deco and, of course, liberal lashings of Steampunk, because I could not resist bringing in the fabulous Orrery textures for a new generation!

The Orrery clock face and hands textures are the only part of our original Orrery Clock that remains from the pre-mesh steampunk models – and they had to be remade from the original fractals for this project. I have been working on meshing the clockwork and getting it really low poly for a couple of years, on and off. This project motivated me to finally finish the job. The case is entirely new original mesh, a transitional mesh on the way to the next project, to be covered in a future post.

And the bakelite! Bakelite is an early form of plastic invented in 1909 (you can look it up!) that was easy to mold, took bright colors and was inexpensive to produce.  Bakelite quickly became popular as a material for jewelry, toys, and domestic objects and ornaments. It was a good insulator, so it was also used extensively for electric appliances like telephones and, especially, radios.

People familiar with my work already know that I collect bakelite, especially jewelry, and that I’ve released a number of items emulating the material. Which is not as easy as you might think. Bakelite was usually smooth (i.e. shiny, for our purposes), and usually one-color-per-piece, but it was not “solid” color. Bakelite could be manufactured to imitate ivory, tortoise shell, jade, wood and other natural materials. Even when a piece was intended to be “solid color,” there are often subtle color variations that show up as streaking or lighter and darker patches. In addition, you see areas faded by wear and UV light or darkened with age-grime or even painted details to set off shaping. Fascinating stuff!

Of course, any surface is imbued with detail like that. It is a continuing challenge for creators of virtual objects. The more deeply you observe surfaces, the less satisfying it is to simply paste on a simple texture, now that we can create forms from mesh and map the surfaces.

The 1920 Celeste clock is actually made of wood with bakelite decoration. Or it may be bakelite doing a very good job of imitating wood. Either way, it has a panel in the back for opening it up to wind the spring. The 1920 house may not have had electricity!



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Hidden Treasures and Simple Pleasures

Spyralle Jun Porcelain Teapot and Teacup

Spyralle Jun Porcelain Teapot and Teacup

To my regret, I’ve fallen behind on the Spyralle blog, and not for the first time! We had a couple of hunts this month, and I quite overlooked posting about the gifts from Spyralle.

The World Tour Hunt is one of the beautifully managed hunts presented by Kastle & Co. Events throughout the year.  The hunt provides separate hunt trails for each continent – hunters can choose to do one or all. Prizes cost 2 lindens. Spyralle is on the Asia path this year, which allowed me an opportunity to pursue further research into the arts of Asia, a topic which has always fascinated me.

I had been following the PBS “Story of China” and was especially interested in Episode 3, covering the “golden age” of the Song Dynasty, so, as a fan and collector of modern pottery, I started looking up Chinese poetry of that era, and found Jun ware. Jun was one of the “Five Great Kilns of Song Dynasty ceramics,” active for several centuries, into the Ming era – roughly the 10th through 15th centuries. Jun ware was prized for its characteristic blue and purple glazes.

What struck me about this pottery is how modern it looks! Some of it is 1000 years old, and yet it would look completely at home in a craft fair or art gallery gift shop of our time.

So, of course, I had to try my hand at crafting – in mesh – some Jun simulations. I made this simple drinking cup and then a small teapot, just big enough for a pair of scholars sharing an afternoon cup of tea and composing poems in some mountain retreat.  Or friends listening to music near the waterfalls of Spyralle Mauna Waipi’o, sharing a quiet sunrise.

But the greatest challenge and most interesting part of the task was trying to emulate a Jun style glaze in the textures – with the color variations, the deep indigo hues, the small details of ash spots and crackle. Consider these pieces a first generation effort!

The World Tour Hunt ended May 27, but I will leave the prize up for a few more days.

Spyralle Set of 3 Patio Lanterns

Spyralle Set of 3 Patio Lanterns

When the sun goes down, there on the mountainside, our scholars might light a candle or two and protect the flames from the breeze with one of these filigree lanterns. Or you can place them on tables to light your next patio supper or summer barbecue.

The set of three candle lanterns is Spyralle’s prize for the Peace By Peace Hunt 2, which runs through June 3.  Prizes are 1L in this hunt.

Please seek out the hunt kiosks near the entrance to Spyralle Mauna Waipi’o for hints and more information. And watch for more Spyralle releases bringing the poetry of craftsmanship to your home.


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Flowers of Spring

Spyralle Sunflower Adornments Full Set

Spyralle Sunflower Adornments Full Set

Imagine a Royal Wedding somewhere outdoors in a forest meadow! Human and fae, Seelie and Unseelie, all having one terrific party and wearing the most awesome hats! Spyralle’s wearable flowers might be a little over the top at an ordinary wedding, but they’re definitely demure and understated for our imaginary celebration.

Sunflower and it’s little sisters Moonflower and Windflower and Mini-Sunflower are Spyralle’s exclusive at the May round of 68 Main.

Spyralle Sunflower 4 Color Mini Set

Spyralle Sunflower 4 Color Mini Set

Each mini-set comes with four petal colors. The full set has all twelve. Each set provides all four of the stem colors in the convenient HUD.

Spyralle Moonflower 4 Color Mini Set

Spyralle Moonflower 4 Color Mini Set

The HUD also includes a resizing option. They do not go all the way to Petites size, but we expect to release a Petites edition soon.

Spyralle Windflower 4 Color Mini Set

Spyralle Windflower 4 Color Mini Set

Sunflower was inspired by a long drive to see last summer’s solar eclipse in Nebraska. At sunset we were driving through miles of sunflower fields. Sun shining through the golden petals looked like flame. It was a magnificent sight!

In this post: LAQ’s Neve bento head and skin with personal shape, Miya hair from Elikatera, IKON eyes. The dress is from Spyralle, unreleased.

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