Thursday, January 10, 2013

Sim Update 2013

As you may have already heard the Annwin sim will soon be closed. Unfortunately the cost of keeping it open has be come prohibitive and it saddens me that I had to finally make the decision to close that chapter of SL for me.

But as they say, when one story ends another begins…

I have been in contact with several of the sim regulars to get their feedback on what spots they cannot live without and I agree with them that these areas are sacred and need to be recreated on Serenite. Add to that the new world of mesh objects in SL (and me being a mesher) has given me the creative juice infusion I’ve long needed to do a full sim remodel of Serenite and upgrade my sim’s builds to mesh.

Now don’t panic! What you love about both sims is still my vision of what I want my SL to be… nature, solitude, reflection, artistry, with elements of strong nautical, celtic and lore influences. The atmosphere and feel of the island will be maintained, its just the quality of the builds will be improving as well as an improvement of the sims performance. (You may have already seen some replacement things already popping up like the new stone bridges)

With the merger of the major elements of the two sims all the areas of the Serenite sim will eventually be relocated. I will try and do this in the least disruptive manner possible so that there are still many spots to enjoy at all times. But at its best, it will still be a lot of re-construction and teraforming. I ask for your patience and understanding through this transition period. The end result I hope will be a sim visiting experience you will enjoy even more than what you have today.

Areas and features to be re-built and relocated:

Retail Shops: As the backbone of the sim’s viability I will still be having my own retail on Serenite. As they are now the shops will be continue to be as unobtrusive and immersive to the visiting experience as possible, the goal is to add to the visual experience of Serenite vs detract from it. I want the shops to be just another part of the exploration of the sim. All the shops are getting a total mesh overhaul, some of my older products will be retired and some will be getting updated. The shopping village will be moving to a new location on the sim,

Walking paths: A big part of Serenite’s charm is in its extensive network of walking paths. These twisting paths that never end are what make the sim feel many times bigger than what it really is. While they will be getting a mesh overhaul and will soon take you in new directions they will always be the core feature of the sim. I love to walk in SL, long meandering paths you can get lost on are a must for me.

The Crystal Cave: I have some new grand ideas for this one. It will be redesigned in mesh and rebuilt on Serenite, when complete the entrance as before will be hidden so that it must be discovered by adventurous souls.

The Cutting Garden. I’ve been running that freebee cutting garden since 2004 and have no plans of discontinuing. I have some fun ideas on a new ‘shop’ to house it, so look for it moving to a new location on the sim

The Solitude Garden: This is the name I call the SW corner of Annwin, that big stillwater purple pond with the lonely trees and Botanical’s amazing Aurora Borealis above (have to be in night mode to see it.) I see people standing there alone often, and I use it as a meditation spot too so, it NEEDS to stay. It too will have to be redesigned, as I will be short on land, but I think with some creative use of mesh and off-world objects much of the same feel can be recreated in a little sim space.

The Garden of the Moon (the Tango garden): One of the most popular places for couples on the sims has always been the dance garden, a small romantic spot where you can dance the night away and feel like the moon is your own. This garden will be redesigned and relocated but I will try my best to keep the same secluded feel as it has always had.

The House: Maxwell’s (of Rustica fame) carriage home has been a long standing favorite place for folks to use as a respite when exploring or for that ever embarrassing chore of clothing unpacking and sorting. Due to space restraints I will have to switch it to a much smaller home so there will soon be a visitor friendly domicile on Serenite that visitors can use for their resting and changing needs.

The Ship: Unfortunately we will have to say goodbye to the Relic ship. While it has served us well over the years it was built before sculpts existed so its prim usage is far too heavy and those prims will be needed so that I can migrate the other loved areas to Serenite. After the re-design I may find I’ll have room for a leaner meshed ship to be docked on the sim but as of now I cannot commit to it. The sim regardless will continue to have a strong nautical theme and feel and the ruined old port will be re-designed in mesh and relocated.

The ‘Other’ Secret Cave: I don’t want to describe this one too much, few knew its existence but if you were one of them you might have noticed right now it’s gone. It will be back in a new form and new location, I won’t tell you where or when, as its always been one of the sims ‘easter eggs’. Perhaps I’ll have a similar way to find it as the old one and drop a subtle hint when its back.

The Barn: Anyone remember the barn? I’m thinking about bringing it back. Due to space needs I had removed it from the sim but am thinking about bringing it back if space and prims permit it.

New Areas: Along with keeping the old favorites I hope to also add some new ones. I have a few personal must haves and I hope they will end up becoming your new favorites too.

Thank you for your continued support over the years. I’ve always envisioned my sim as a place others could use to escape whatever it was they were needling to escape from and find peace, either by themselves or with friends and I hope I will be able to continue to provide that for you over the next many years. Knowing you are out there using it every day makes me smile.

Thank You

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Sim Redo Update

Well it’s been a couple weeks of prim flinging.

The Garden of the Moon has been relocated to its new home, it is now on the west edge of the sim near the NW corner. Its new location ties it more to the structured areas of the sim but it also has a more secluded feel than it had before. It is still canopied by Botanical’s trees but now overlooks the vast ocean. The radio station is still set to play those old jazz and big band classics. Looks like folks are finding it, I see couples spinning the night away.

The magic shop is moved to its new home, just a little up the path from where it stood. It has been re-merchandised to hopefully make it easier to find things.

On the sim at large some of the walking paths have been redirected and some new ones have been added. The walking and hiking paths are still in flux so more changes are still to come.

Still in line for some cosmetic overhauls and updates, the hub area, the cutting garden, the grotto, and the gypsy camp so keep your eyes peeled for new things to explore.

On new releases for KX Designs I am actively working on the most requested item, sim terrain texture packs. I won’t be selling my personal sim textures but instead will be making all new sets in a similar feel to my personal ones. Ill be testing them out on Annwn as I go if you want a peek.

Thanks for your continued support

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Renovation and Rebirth

Well if you’ve been on the sim you’ve seen some dramatic changes to the retail portions of the sim. Don’t panic, I’m not opining a mall, all the retail areas are to be used be me and those select friends who have been showcasing wears in the Wicca store who all embrace the immersive experience. Motivation is twofold, free up some much needed prims that can be used for landscaping in other areas and I’m in real need a good o’l creative kick in the pants to fall in love with SL all over again.

The old shops are all coming down and being replaced by a small village complex. The village while taking up less of a footprint than the old shops did feels more expansive and more importantly less jarring that the old retail did. I wanted to create more of an immersive shopping experience vs just in your face retail while also adding to the character and story of the sim… imaging tradesmen coming and going, offering their various wears to the shopkeepers to sell. Those just intent on wandering can now wander by all the retail without feeling it being forced in your face. The sim is finally turning into my original vision of it.

The KX Headline store is pretty much all moved into its new home, what appears and many small niche shops from the outside is really all just one space. The holiday items are all moving to a dedicated shop at the base of the hill that will run year round and rotate featured items as the seasons change.

The KX Tree display garden that was crammed in the back corner of the sim is now up in the Prefab skybox (skybox will be eventually be getting an overhaul too) so those who need to see the tress in person before purchase can quickly find and buy the tree they are looking for (the teleport pads located around the sim will zip you up there), the old spot is soon to be reclaimed by woodlands. The KX Tree purchase point area is real close to where it was before its just becoming more of a village garden shop. Planning to add more plants and pots soon. I am also looking into a better method to display a lot of trees in a smaller space.

The Wicca shop’s ‘Practical Magic’ original build is coming down, its new home is just a little up the path, first small cottage store on the right. The new location is smaller (and a lot more prim efficient) and hopefully will be easer to shop from. The remerchandising of the wears should make it easer to find what you are looking for. Look for new items to be appearing soon as we begin gearing up for fall.

The old PM location will soon be reclaimed by nature. Waterways will be rerouted to give you new vistas and there will be new paths to explore. The Hub area will also have a bit of a freshening up and waterway changes. The cutting garden will forever remain, but will have a cosmetic overhaul, want to create more of a farmers flower market feel too it. Gypsies being as the are may find a new campsite, never know where they may turn up.

A new addition coming to the sim that I’ve always wanted but never had before is a small pub, not a ‘SL club pub’ but one of those small locals hangout spots. Once completed all will be welcome to use it as a waypoint to hang with their friends. May in the future have some events there but the intent is to keep it relaxing and low key. Construction has begun if you’d like to take a peek, it’s at the top of the village trail with a spectacular view of the sims.

Well that’s your update, hope you enjoy the changes.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Spring and Inspiration Blooms Anew

Work finally starting to slow down a bit allowing me to have some SL time again... and yet again I'm feeling the urge for some Second Life rebirth.

I keep revisiting the same idea over and over again in my wanderings, and feeling the urge to make that idea come to prim reality. My first thoughts of Serenity all those years ago when I first imagined my own sim was that it was a tiny seaport village, tradesmen coming and going and bringing their wears (and exotic plants!) to the port, the village being a collection of small curiosity and antiquity shops all clustered tightly together to be protected against the elements and sea. Ultimately with the goal of letting the retail that supports the islands blur into the unspoken story of the sim and reinforce the setting and the stories those who visit it create. Visitors being able to wander and shop while still staying immersed in their escape from the grid.

So the idea is to bring together the various elements of the sim, my headline store, the wiccan shop, the cutting garden, the ship port, and the piano garden (garden of the moon), and a few fun new elements into one cohesive whole that feels right, and fits the sim, and most important, do it without compromising the predestine nothing that the sim is that I love.

Challenge yes, but if it wasn't a challenge it wouldn't be worth doing now would it!

Thank You all for your continued support over the years, it is you who make Serenity come to life.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Jacaranda Trees

As you may have figured purple is one of my favorite colors so it was just a matter of time before I started making purple trees. *laughs*

Introducing the KX Jacaranda Tree. These are in bloom all across Southern California this time of year so here a little taste of CA sunshine for you. :)

New Jacaranda Trees in front of shop

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Just a update on the shop and sims.

Hello Serenite!

Just a little post on whats happening on the sims and what to look for over summer.

Well the most obvious change, I tore down the old KX shop which just wasn’t working well and built an all new one. While it doesn’t disappear into the land as much as the old one did it is a lot more functional space. It’s now more of an indoor outdoor space, with the garden areas as more of a focal point to bring more focus to the landscaping products. The build itself is a lodge so it is now reflective of the log homes I sell. The relaxed style furniture also works better in it and the more airy space is easer to get around in.

Parts of the old shop’s build will probably be turning up around the port area sometime this summer so that folks can still use parts of that structure for RP and Photography proposes.

The building that was housing Robins ‘Yummy Skins’ was taken down but don’t fret her skins are sill here, they are now inside the Practical Magic shop on the upper floor.

The less obvious change is Annwn will be converting to a homestead sim this month, it was just too expensive to keep it running as a pure recreation area as full sized sim with no retail support.

I intend to keep the feel of a lot of the areas but things may be shifting around a bit to better use the space on fewer prims. Mostly noticeably I will be expanding the waterways so as to make it feel less empty with fewer prims. The Cave, the Beach, the Falls, and the Grove are all elements I will want to maintain, they just may end up shifting to new locations.

One element I do want to try and add to Annwn is an art gallery, but a gallery in the style of my art show last year, where nature and art are mixed together, a nature walk where the art is discovered amongst the land. Prims willing that will happen sometime this summer.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Update for Spring 2009

Update for Spring 2009

Well the last of the snow has finally melted away, lush green again the dominate shade rolling across the land. New changes are again underway across the sims.

The KX tree collection already having outgrown its new home needs more room to spread its roots, I’m going to be spending my time re-envisioning the retail areas of the sim to make them easier to navigate as well as in hope to recapturing some of that precious waterfront for more relaxing pursuits.

Annwn most likely will be scaling back to an open space sim, with SLs changing in pricing and keeping the retail areas to limited amounts keeping it as a full sim is just not viable option any more. I will be try and incorporate some of its favorite relaxing spots back into the grounds Serenity.

Enjoy the spring!