Today I spent some time with littleone Aries an RL and SL artist. I was a little nervous about this interview as I know virtually nothing about the SL art scene, or art in general, but littleone set me at ease immediately. I found her to be a very warm and kind person eager to share her art with me and all of you. Get this, she lives on a mountain, on an island in the Caribbean, how cool is that! Her art work definitely shows the influences of her natural surroundings. She spoke to me a little bit about the "rich tapestry of cultures" she is exposed to there and how the various cultures have been woven into the fabric of the land.
Littleone came to SL for the sole purpose of sharing her art. She had read an article in the New York Times featuring Filthy Fluno, a prominent figure in the SL and RL art world, and was curious to see what it was all about. A little over a year later littleone is showing and selling her art in SL. She told me that at some point she met Filthy and found him to be both helpful and generous. She is paying it forward when possible helping answer artists questions and educating people like me about the SL art scene.
I was curious about her process and asked if she created any of her work in-world. She told me all of her art is created in her studio, then meticulously photographed and uploaded to SL. She also said she likes to work in many mediums including watercolor and oil based paint. The first floor of her gallery is watercolors, beautiful paintings with soft strokes. As she spoke I found my eyes wandering from painting to painting, examining and experiencing each of them. One of the things I noticed was the fact that her paintings were not all of the same ilk, that she showed versatility, each one unique. Littleone shows, in many of her paintings, a touch of magic, and as we discussed that she shared with me that her major influence was Walt Disney! I could see the magic and the influence in several of her paintings, especially the ones she refers to as "magical realism" These paintings have both fantasy and a touch of reality incorporated into them. I can honestly say those were my favorites.
We maneuvered the stairs to the upper floor of her gallery to view the virtual book she and a few friends put together. Her friend Elfgreen Cyberstar wrote poems to compliment the paintings and Automatic Quandry wrote music to accompany the words. Jacobo Sands suggested they make it into a book and viola there it is on the top floor of the gallery. I was thrilled to see more of littleones work and the book is not to be missed, it provides a whole new way to experience her art. I asked about her current favorite painting and she directed me to Night Life, The Crane, a gorgeous depiction of a bird incorporated into a tree. the tree, in fact grows, on her property. It's a ficus tree and as she explained how the ficus has air roots and takes root wherever it lands, I could just feel her connection to both the tree and the painting. Littleone is very aware and intrigued by the connection between things and strives to depict that in her paintings. This tree, for example, is her "ceremonial tree" and she describes it as a labyrinth, perfect to incorporate images into.
My time with Ms. Aries was coming to an end so I asked her thoughts on showing her work at Kasbah. She explained how the Kasbah has been wonderful for the sim, attracting traffic and creating interest. She feels that here every effort is made to keep the artist in peoples minds, through notices, the blog, signs, advertising and even having the musicians mention who is showing. We talked about the benefits of showing art in SL and Littleone was happy to share that the most amazing thing she has found is the fact that her work can be seen by so many cultures, so many people. Her voice softening as she spoke of the overwhelming support she receives and the kindness of the SL audience. Before I bid littlone goodbye I asked about any upcoming news regarding her art and she hinted that opportunities are opening up in Europe and the states and that we should stay tuned for more information as the details are ironed out.
I came away from this interview with an appreciation for the SL art scene I didn't really have before. It was wonderful having the opportunity to speak with someone so creative, intelligent and thoughtful. I loved the paintings, the virtual book was incredible and littlone Aries was nothing short of a pleasure. I look forward to seeing what she creates next, and might even check out a few more of the amazingly talented artists SL has to offer.Littleone will be showing in the Terrace Art Gallery from 5/5 til the end of the month and all of her pieces are available for sale. Here is a link to her website, http://www.monicalinville.com
That's all for now.....Tessa1 beck