Clothesfreelife, a naturist blog we follow (and who follows SLN) made a comment earlier this week about having dipped a toe into SL but not being sure where to go as a naturist within the grid itself, and asked if we could advise.
Of course we can!
Indeed, it’s often my hope that people who read regular naturist blogs, such as the excellent clothesfreelife, sometimes wonder, as a result of the linkage we receive there and on other blogs, as to what the virtual version of naturism is like, and also decide to dip a toe into the SL world.
Let me make it clear: there is no comparison. SL naturism will always be a pale imitation of the real thing, but then ‘Call of Duty’ is always going to be a pale imitation of war, ‘World of Minecraft’ a pale imitation of another virtual world, ‘FIFA 15’ a pale imitation of appearing in a professional soccer league.
So while ‘Call of Duty’ will never fully represent the realities of war, the smells, the fear, the tension, the adrenalin, and ‘FIFA 15’ will never fully represent the endless grind of training sessions and tedious travel arrangements, SL naturism will never fully reflect a sense of heat, humidity and the logical path of taking clothes off in order to feel comfortable, will never fully reflect an initial sense of fear, trepidation and then exhilaration in swimming naked in a public location.
That said, there are elements of SL that do open people’s eyes to certain aspects of a lifestyle (not necessarily naturist) in which there’s a gradual dawning of the ‘rules’, the etiquette, and the culture of a lifestyle. In this, SL naturism excels. It’s one think to put together a rather handsome or beautiful SL avatar that looks fabulous naked, but once immersed in SL naturism there’s a gradual dawning that however sexy the avatar created, you’re no longer sitting there talking to them because they look pixel perfect. You’re drawn to people for their personality, not the fact that their boobs or penis are fabulously large, skins tanned, lips pursed and pouty. Not unlike RL naturism. You can sit there chatting, in RL, to an attractive looking person without forever gazing at their private parts. If they’re dull, you’re going to avoid them in a major way. The same applies to an older person who is maybe out of condition. The emphasis isn’t on how ‘ugly’ they look (which appears to be the younger generation’s go-to reaction when faced with the nudity of older people) but on how interesting they are. In my experience there’s young attractive bores and old ‘unattractive’ bores. Young, good looking people with fascinating personalities and older, maybe wrinkled people with fascinating personalities. It’s all about having a personality, not age or the suppleness of the skin.
So you come to realise that some elements of SL naturism are a very accurate reflection of the RL version.
Of course, people reading regular naturist blogs, who click through to sites like SL Naturist may not be Second Life avatars. Some will not be interested in a virtual world. Some may be interested in it, but don’t want to commit time and, yes indeed, real money in an experiment. So…the idea is to offer a Beginner’s Guide to SL, with special emphasis on SL naturism.
I’ve split this into a couple of different sections, with this Introduction to be followed through next week by a Guide on making a good looking avatar on the cheap (i.e. without spending any RL money at all), and then a Guide on where to go, once inside SL, to get a sense of the virtual naturist lifestyle. You never know, you may just get into conversation with other like-minded, naturist individuals and converse on matters pertaining to RL naturism (I do this all the time).
I can’t give timescales as to when I’ll get subsequent parts of this post published, because I’m deep in a period of RL where I’m snowed under, work-wise, but I’ll do my best to have at least the 2nd part published during the week. If not, both parts will appear next weekend.
nb: the relevance of the photos above will become clear in ‘Part 2’, as the skin, coat and boots worn by our model are all L$0 free items that will certainly help you, a newcomer to SL, look fabulous.