Second Life® through the eyes of lolli Sapphire: Creative and educational possibilites of virtual reality

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Title:
Second Life® through the eyes of lolli Sapphire: Creative and educational possibilites of virtual reality
Physical Description:
Project in lieu of thesis
Language:
English
Creator:
Knoll, Christie Tomlin
Publisher:
College of Fine Arts; University of Florida
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, Fla
Publication Date:

Notes

Abstract:
I am an avid user of the computer-based virtual world known as Second Life® (SL™). My capstone project provides insider knowledge of SL™ people, places, activities, and events. With five years of experience in SL™, my research utilizes an auto-ethnographic methodology wherein I assume the multi-faceted role of as participant observer, researcher, and creative inhabitant and user of Second Life®. Utilizing an online self-publishing e-magazine site called ISSUU™ I will explain Second Life® through the persona of my SL™ avatar, lolli1 Sapphire (http://issuu.com/christie314/docs/eyeslolli). Through my own and lolli Sapphire’s images and explanations, various aspects of SL will be shared in this capstone paper and in an ISSUU publication. As a SL™ inhabitant and artist, I have also created videos and artworks about my experiences in SL™. These videos and artworks are shared on my website (http://www.mydigitalhandprint.com/index.html) along with my research field notes that appear in the form of a blog (http://314christie.tumblr.com/). Readers may find my videos about Second Life® on YouTube™ (http://www.youtube.com/user/LolliSapphire?feature=mhee). My capstone paper accompanying my project describes my research process, a literature review pertaining to Second Life®, and a brief summary of the history, purpose, attributes, capabilities, limitation, and problems of SL™. Finally, I share my insights about Second Life® as a creative space along with SL™ tips for art educators interested in knowing more about Second Life®2.
Abstract:
1 My avatar name appears here the same as in Second Life, lolli Sapphire. The “l” in lolli is not capped because five years ago when I created her I felt that she was not a real person and her name should not be capped like a real person’s name.
General Note:
Art Education terminal project

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida Institutional Repository
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University of Florida
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All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
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AA00017135:00001


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1 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities SECOND LIFE THROUGH THE EYES OF LOLLI SAPPHIRE: CREATIVE AND EDUCATIONAL POSSIBILITIES OF VIRTUAL REALITY By CHRISTIE TOMLIN KNOLL A CAPSTONE PR O JECT PRESENTED TO THE COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS OF THE UNIVERSTITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS UN I VERSITY OF FLORIDA 2013

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2 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities 2013 CHRISTIE TOMLIN KNOLL

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3 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Acknowledgements I want to thank my husband James Knoll and my children Jacob and A.J. Knoll for supporting me in this process. I would a lso like to thank Dr. Delacruz and Dr. Roland for their guidance as my capstone commit tee. In addition, a special thank you to my friends Ann Boothe, Angie Cather, Lisa Cooke, Sha nnon Martin, Tanya Myers and Tracey Pitcock for keeping me in real li fe. I feel I need to also acknowledge the Second Life residents who shared themselves, their talents, creativity and knowledge with me, because it made all the difference.

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4 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities ABSTRACT OF CAPSTONE PROJECT PRESENTED TO THE COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR I DA IN PART I AL FUL F ILLMENT OF THE REQUIRMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS SECOND LIFE THROUGH THE EYES OF LOLLI SAPPHIRE: THE CREATIVE AND EDUCATIONAL POSSIBLITIES OF VIRTUAL REALITY By Christie Tomlin Knoll May 2013 Chai r: Elizabeth Delacruz Member : De n nis Roland Major: Art Education I am an avid user of the computer based virtual world known as Second Life (SL ). My capstone project provides insider knowledge of SL people, places, activities, and events. With five years of experience in SL my research utilizes an auto ethnographic methodology wherein I assume the multi faceted role of as participant observer, researcher, and creative inhabitant and user of Second Life Utilizing an online self publishing e magazi explain Second Life through the persona of my SL avatar, l olli 1 Sapphire ( http://issuu.com/christie314/docs/eyeslolli ) Through my own and l and explanations, various aspects of SL will be shared in this capstone paper and in an ISSUU 1 My avata years ago when I created her I felt that she was not a real person and her name should not be capped like a real

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5 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities publication. As a SL inhabitant and artist, I have also created videos and artworks about my experiences in SL These videos and ar tworks are shared on my webs ite ( http://www.mydigitalhandprint.com/index.html ) along with my research field notes that appear in the form of a blog ( http://314christie.tumblr.co m/ ). Reader s may find my videos about Second Life on YouTube ( http://www.youtube.com/user/LolliSapphire?feature=mhee ). My capstone paper accompanying my project describes my researc h process, a literature review pertaining to Second Life and a brief summary of the history, purpose, attributes, capabilities, limitation, and problems of SL Finally, I share my insights about Second Life as a creative space along with SL tips for a rt educators interested in knowing more about Second Life 2 2 From this point forward it should be understood that Linden Lab and Second Life are trademarks. They have no affiliation with my capstone project.

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6 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Table of Contents Acknowledgements ................................ ................................ ................................ ....................... 3 Table of Contents ................................ ................................ ................................ .......................... 6 Statement of the Problem ................................ ................................ ................................ ........................ 8 Purpose and Significance of the Study ................................ ................................ ................................ ...... 9 Research Qu estions and Assumptions ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 10 Terms Informing my Study ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 10 Reflections on the Literature Informing my Inquiry ................................ .............................. 11 Too Late for Us, but Not for Them? ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 12 The Ideology of the Technocratic Culture ................................ ................................ ............................... 13 Linger ing Thoughts ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 14 Methodology ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 14 Research Site and Subjects ................................ ................................ ................................ ..................... 14 Resear ch Methodology ................................ ................................ ................................ ........................... 15 Limitations ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 17 Findings ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 17 Blurring Identity thro ugh Avatar Creation, Performance and Experiences ................................ ............ 17 SL Environments and Places ................................ ................................ ................................ .................... 19 Doing Something in Second Life: Seeking Connecti ons and Experiences ................................ ............... 22 ................................ ................................ .................. 25 Final Thoughts ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 28 References ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 31 List of Figures with Figure Captions ................................ ................................ ........................ 34 Figure 1. ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 37 Figure 2. ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 38 Figure 3. ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 39

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7 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 4 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 40 Figure 5. ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 41 Figure 6 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 42 Figure 7. ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 43 Figure 8 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 44 Figure 9 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 45 Figure 10 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 46 Figure 11 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 47 Figure 12 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 48 Figure 13 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 49 Figure 14 ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ 50 Author Bio graphy ................................ ................................ ................................ ....................... 51

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8 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities When I first logged on and rezzed 3 in Second Life I stood in place I had to wait for my laptop to render the virtual world through its processor and limited graphic cap abilities The laptop's fan s pun fe verish ly, then calmed as my black computer screen revealed grey objects that slowly became full of life and color My arrival was unceremonious as I stood with in a circle created of virtual rope and fence posts The residents did not greet me, but continued thei r virtual lives, which at the time I assumed consisted of sitting on fence posts and commenting with random text that appeared in a chat box In the chat box I wrote, What do I do now?" T he follow ing text appeared after my question R ead the sign The sign only had t hree lines of text followed by a faded blue arrow It welcom ed me to Orientation I sland and then directly underneath, in the same font the words "T his way out" ( s ee Figure 1 ) T he arrow was pointing down a path and like thousands before me I exited the circle and I began my life as lolli Sapphire Ov er the past five years I still return to Orientation Island and can be found sitting on the fence post still contemplating that sign My Second Life experience provide s me with insider knowle dge of the creative and educational opportunities in virtual reality. This paper discusses Second Life as an aspect of our shifting culture made possible through virtual reality our blurring of identities, and the cultivation of new environments in which to interact, be creative, and exchange knowledge. Statement of the P roblem As Second Life enters its ten th year as a n online (virtual) creative and educational global environmen t it still remains large ly unnot iced by most art educators. I believe th is to be due to the lack of relevant information available to the art educator about Second Life. Although 3 To rezz is to create or make an object appear in Second Life.

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9 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities there is a small but active community of art educators using the web to convey their virtual experiences, I have found this group to be mostly folks in higher education, and their activities at times not relevant to my needs. T here have been interesting scholarly papers written about new media landscapes in art education publications but they often lack intimate knowledge of Second Life though firsth and sustained insider experience Purpose and Significance of the Study I think it is important for art educators to have knowledge of Second Life as so many people (tens of thousands at any given moment) are tapping into their creativ ity through the ir e xperiences in this vi rtual world. My research provides insights about Second Life, as I also highlight it as a resource for personal an d professional creative expression and development. I also provide tips for the art educator wanting to explore Second Li fe. My capstone project utilize s an online self publishing e magazine site called ISSUU to explain Second Life through my own and lolli Sapphire's persona, words, images and machinima 4 ( http:// issuu.com/christie314/docs/eyeslolli ) In addition, as a SL resident and artist I have also artworks about my experiences in SL and share them on my website ( http://www.mydigitalhandprint.com/ ) along wi th my research field notes that appear in the form of a blog ( http://314christie.tumblr.com/ ) Finally, as I feel it is important to try to reach as many art educators as possible, I have also created a YouTub e channel to house my SL machinima and videos ( http://www.youtube.com/user/LolliSapphire ) My study of Second Life is important as it provides relevant information to art educators interested in un derstanding how Second Life is being used as a creative and educational space. It 4 Machinima is a digital video produced in real time using 3D virtual and gaming environments

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10 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities also provides a general overview of culture in Second Life and tips for the art educator interested in becoming a creative inhabitant in this virtual world My research prov ides knowledge that is only obtainable through in world experience (Laio, 2010). The information I provide describes people, environments, and events in SL as they relate to the creative and educational opportunities of virtual reality and as seen through the eyes of lolli Sapphire. In summary, t his capstone research project brings together scholarly research with virtual experiences as a means of informing art educators of the possibilities they have today, tomorrow and in the future in preparing young pe ople for the next level of technological advancements. Research Questions and Assumptions My research questions framing this study are simple and straightforward. I use these questions to guide my inquiry and explanations. Questions include: Wh at is Second Life? How is Second Life being used as a creative and educational experience? And h ow are other technologies used in conjunction with Second Life? There are few assumptions I make in regards to Second Life I n general, I do feel that SL re sidents are up to date in multiple areas of digital media/ technologies with some degrees of expertise although that expertise varies from person to person I feel that many residents of SL also arrive in Second Life not knowing exactly what they are looki ng for, but knowing that they are looking for an interesting experience nevertheless Terms Informing my Study D igital technology Digital technology uses equipment, programming, and mathematical principles to compres s and encode information. It includes all forms of electronic technology with the ability to provide quick access to information. I n this paper my use of this term will be mainly referring to cell phones computers and tablets ( Schafer, 2 003).

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11 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities N ew media : New media refers to varying forms of information and productions created with and acces sible through digital technologies It also includes digital imaging, videos, audios, creative software programs, virtual worlds and gaming environments New media is said to be ubiquitous, ever present, and available 24 hours a day ( http://www.pcmag.com/encyclopedia/term/47936/new media) R esident : A resident is Linden Lab's name for a user of Second Life. Linden Lab is the owner and developer of Second Life. I use the word resident interchangeably with c re ative inhabitant, and avatar ( http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Resident) Reflections on the Literature Informing my Inquiry Over the years I have been able to piece together research from various sources that make sense to my experiences in Second Lif e. I draw much of my understanding of the shifting cultural landscape exhibited in Second Life by reading the explanations of researchers that have spent a great deal of their lives examining how culture is influenced by digital technologies Some of these explanations predate the I nternet but their cautionary words continuously echo in literature of those that seek current understan d ings about how our culture has increasingly been high jacked by commercialism, politics, and video games. Some observe that i t is becoming harder to tell what is reality, as we all have discovered our unique method to manipulate it (Glen, 2011) or what exactly to do with technology, once we have it. Although, I am an advocate for digital technology and thus new media, I am a lso aware of the power we hold within our hands to change the world for the better or worse. I believe art education's role is to guide young people in understanding thei r impact on our global culture through how they choose to use today's technology (Dela cruz, 2010) Postman (1992) (referencing tool using culture) stated, "Tools do not attack...the dignit y and integrity of the

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12 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities culture." H e also points of the measure of honor and ritual one should take on when they hold the tools with the power to shape our culture. I follow with McLuhan s ( 2003) observation that we use technology as our scapegoat for our actions. I have to question if we are doing jus t that with digital technology, compromising our dignity and integrity and then claiming that the fault l ies with the ease of use of technology The anonymity of the Internet allows for rants and self indulgence as well as q uiet forms of self expression and developing of friendship that might not be possible without the hidden real life. There is a "ubiquit ous connection between art, ideology and power" (Darts 2004, p 313) where once power came from the sword, now it comes from the ability in having the fastest processors and the skill to put them to use. McLuhan and Postman agree that "the clearest wa y to see through a culture is to attend to i t tools for conversations" (cited in Duncum, 2001, p. 102). Attending to those tools of conversation i s a means to foster critical analysis of develop ing ideologies within the culture while building creative resi stance to the effects of media (Darts, 2004) I will try not to be subvers ive in my thinking so I will not rally for art studios to become a sterile space where students are plugged into a digital world where nothing is real, solid or messy. But at the sa me time, v irtual worlds depend on real life experiences, and the mind has the ability to tran slate the visual into emotional. In this line of thinking, a rt educators can use digital media inh erited as part of our current "tool using culture" (Postman, 1993 p. 23) both to bring new forms of awareness to young people and to help them develop empathy toward s other s as we are all a part of a globalized world. T o o Late for Us, but Not for T hem ? McLuhan observes that it has always been the artist who perc eives that alterations in man are caused by a new medium, who recognizes that the future is present, and uses his artwork

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13 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities to prepare ground for it (cited in Tillander, 2010, p. 53). Young people's lives have changed dramatically not only because they are using the new media (new tools) but equal ly because we adults are as well. The evening ritual of watching the 6 o'clock news on a television set where the family would have been exposed to the same information and then discussed the events of the day bas ed on their values that ritual is a n independent ritual of quiet active participation within various new media environments In these new media environments, e ach individual is shaping their own ideolog y and being shaped by varying ideologies based on wha t specific media they engage and whom they choose to follow in their virtual world where varying levels of anonymity is commonly accepted T he Ideology of the Technocratic C ulture I wish to clarify that it is not my intent to suggest that it is the place of the art educator to morally judge others, but it is the place of art education to investigate shifts in culture (Darts 2004 ; Tillander, 2 010) as digital technology has profoundly influenced thinking and action (Tavin & Hausman, 2004). Admittedly the re is general lack of decorum in Second Life as noted by Inman, Wright & Hartman (2010) as being one of the reasons that the K 12 educational community has avoided SL. I personally see this avoidance both as futile and as a lack of understanding of the shift ing of culture. As noted by Duncum with his stringing together of commentaries on visual cult never before have images been so self referential, arguably so seductive and Postman warning that the manipulation of people through imagery been so very i mportant to authority (Duncum p. 102). In other words, the K 12 education al community can continue to look for safer, closed off worlds, where they seemingly exercise more control over conte nt and experience but as to their misconception of SL as being a place to escape from reality and /or self (Gottschalk, 2010;

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14 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Rak, 2009), they have mistakenly assumed that there is more c ontrol within those closed off spaces of the culture in which our phy sical self resides. Lingering Thoughts Speculations about effects of media on culture is a long running thread of claims, comments and inquir ies by those interested in looking toward the future as a means of predicting who we will be come My capstone is not to argue that Second L ife is a perfect place for the k 12 student. Rather I want to ease fear of the unknown and ignorance about this virtual world by explaining the experience of Second Life and exposing the creative and educational possibilitie s in virtual worlds Methodology My research provides insider knowledge of Second Life through the experiences of my avatar, lolli Sapphire. lolli reveals in her words and images the creative and educa tional possibilities of this virtual world. I have e xamine d some of the share findings by contr asting lolli's voice with mine in order to better understand how digital technologies and new media are blurring identity and reality I chose the qualitative research method s of auto ethnography and narrative research as they allowed me to probe SL based on my personal understanding of this virtual culture and to use creative writing, art and storytelling to present my findings. Research Site and Subjects Second Life, i n the mo st basic technological terms is a "massively multi user virtual environment (MMUVE)" (Baldwin, 2010, p 1 ) Second Life is in a constant flux as it reacts to the real life of the people, thus I cannot predict the demographics of the people in my study, n or can I explain the manner in which they will present themselves. I can not even state with

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15 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities reasonable certainty that the age range of the SL residents is 17 and upwards as is required for membership in this virtual world 5 I based much of the research fo r my capstone project o n the mainland region of Orientation Island public (oip) This land was created and is maintained by Li nden Lab the owner and developer of Second Life Oip is intended to be used to orient ate new arrivals to Second Life in the basic skil ls to function in world. I chose t his place as it has been claimed as a hang out by long term SL residents and tends to draw a diverse grouping of creative inhabi tants. The reasons for this include the voice capabilities available in oip that may b e disabled in other SL environments the continuous influx of new people coming and going to and from oip and the fact that this is a relatively unmonitored place and as a result there is considerable latitude for self expression T he terms of service of Second Life are generally not heavily enforced at Orientation Island allowing behaviors to occur that would not be acceptable by landowners in other SL locations I have expand ed out from Orientation Island into other areas as part of the natural flow of being a SL resident. T hese locations include educational regions, hi storical places, art venues, towns and cities. Research Methodology My research utilizes an auto biographic and ethno cultural methodology as participant observer, researcher and c reative inhabitant and user of Second Life. In 1997, Stokrocki emp loyed a participant observer strategy in her research with and of Navajo art teachers Through what sh e called triangulation, she sought truthfu lness in her findings through narrative, schol arly writing and artworks My capstone project similarly utilize s a creative narrative 5 residents to include their Second Life or real life name as a means to promote their work such in the case of musicians, artists, builders etc. Their consent will be noted via the text option in Second Life. (No one thought to be under the legal adult age will have this option .)

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16 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities ap proach in reporting my findings, as I am interested in wea ving deeper understandings of a life lived rather than conveying experience in hard numbers and facts ( Fries en, 2009) Through autobiographic and ethno cultural methods, I have been able to combine my five years of knowledge of Second Life with my research and artworks to examine a day in the life of a creative inhabi tant of Second Life Over the past two years in an auto topography approach (Allnutt, 2009) I recorded the movement of self (lolli) within her SL place of residence and through the collecting of images, videos, artworks, music, and profiles of the Second Life i nhabitants and their creations loll i's private conversations have been copied into virtual notecards, and blogged as personal reflections on social media sites such as WordPress Blogger and T umblr 6 and as a means to provide narrative of the phenomena of lo my own shifting and blurring of identities I capture d the essence of Second Life in lolli's words, while also contra sting them against my own as I demo I made sense out of my data through logical think ing and thematic analysis, looking for patterns and inconsistencies in what I experienced and documented (Maxwell, 2004) I examined my research process from within my own experiences and evaluate d what I thought I have found against what others have told m e. I use d research on visual culture for possible reasons explaining why we have the ability to become virtual, to perform as if it is real, and to excel in our creativity. These research methods all share the ability for me to create a visual 6 such a distinction clarifies the fact that these social media sites belong to me. This is in contrast to the experiences of lolli Sapphire that occur in the virtual reality of SL, and that in my mind, belong to her.

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17 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities understand in g of the virtual world by describing experience and sharing images of a phenomenon within the human experience. Limitations Due to the time restraints, I was unable to address the cost of creating and maintain an avatar in Sec ond Life. I would have liked to furthe r examine the social structure and possible underlining social economic hierarchy or the forming of prejudice based on new media and digital technology advances and personal choice in the material used for avatar creations. Since my research is f ounded on my avatar lolli Sap p hire's experiences in Second Life, I felt it to be important to attempt to stay as close to her life as possible, and not put her in places or in situations that would not naturally happen as part of her personality. As a resu lt, the experiences, encounters, and events shared in this research project are limited to what I believe to be appropriate to lolli. I am not conducting a critical anal ysis of Second Life; I am using narrative to explore Second Life through experiences o f lolli Sapphire. Findings My research provide s insider knowledge of selected people, environments, and events in Second Life In my finding s, lolli speak s for hersel f to provide contrast to my voice and as a demonstration of the blending and blurring of our identities that is part of the virtual experience. This shifting in reality allows for real worl d barriers to loosen and my creativity and learning to flow through this open space Blurring I dentity through Avatar C reatio n, P erformance and E xperience s Avatar creation is a continuous process, as Second Life residents update themselves based on visual culture's influences, digital technology, and social media. C reative inhabitants are learn ing to manipulate new media to achieve realism in textures and body movement which

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18 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities results in a performance that seems very real Residents augment themselves as "character and "se lf" through creative narratives and live performances of their talents They present themselves as they are in real life either visual, verbally or combination of the two P opular social sites such as Facebook Flickr YouTube T umblr WordPress and Blogger hold the identities of Second L ife residents and at times give evidence of a connect ion between the SL creative inhabitant and the real life person In addition, SL creative inhabitants take the ir virtual selves into real life through the use of smart phones and tablets Equally as interesting Second Life inhabitants are choosing to use programs such as Skype and Tinychat to re veal their real life self to other inhabitants while virtual ly stan ding beside them in the Second Life environment This bid irectional flow of reality creates a blurring in identity but no confusion for the SL resident who seamlessly embodies two personas (real and virtual) at the same time, as the following narra tives given by lolli, then Chris tie (me) reveal. lolli : I am a living art form; I add to other residents na rratives through my active participation while acc epting the role they see me in I allow them to create the story around our interaction s I know it sounds like I am very giving person but I do enjoy the s tory they create while I am walking through their environment I find it interesting how I am able to adjust and affect perception t hrough performance. I add to their "fun" and they add to my art. Christie: I see lolli as art. I created her but this artistic process has influence over who I am A few years ago I created an image of how I see lolli and my relationship ( See Figure 2 ) There is some blurring of identity with my ability to move real life aside and allow lolli room to make decisions The roles s he plays and choic es in her words and actions surprise me at times, but it has lead to insight to who I am This allows me to deci de to accept, deny or change this aspect of myself.

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19 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities This kind of self analysis is not uncommon for residents in Second Life. lolli recently chatted with a reformed griefer 7 H e explained that the negative effect of his performance as it changed his real li fe behavior He became aggressive to his real life family and friend s verbally, and on social media sites like Facebook. lolli has met new residents as they arrive in Second Life believing it to be a place for aggression behaviors, due to Second Life resi dents filming and posting videos on YouTube of the behaviors in world. But it needs to be said, t he behavior and the appearance of avatars did not at times match their conversation, this seems to show up most often in the 17 25 year olds. An example of th is can be been seen in a short documentary video, Finds A Way ( http://tinyurl.com/d3qn4td ). lolli asked the male avatar if she could film him and his friend as they danced. They both agreed but within the conversa tion many interesting perception s were revealed about ava tar creation. The title for this short video comes from statement made in that conversation, "the spirit always finds a way ." The conversation and video captures a feeling exp ressed by several SL res idents that the avatar provides a creative and life affirming way to move beyond the limitations and problems of the everyday real world. SL Environments and P laces A Second Life day is four hours in duration which does not sound like much time, but four hours is plenty of time to do and see a lot of things since going from place to place is just a matter of knowing what type of environments there are and what the coordinates are for those environments To figure out where to go, residents use the search button on the SL viewer, the destination guide button and website ( http://secondlife.com/destinations ). O r they use landmarks 7 A griefer is a person who uses words, and or actions as aggression to cause a reaction in another person

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20 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities gathered by other residents ( http://t inyurl.com/bm8rqpo ) The most efficient method of travel in SL is teleport 8 which is achieved through pushing a teleport button. lolli: I will give a tour to a newbie 9 if the co nversation seems to flow easily. I never know why the avatar came to Seco nd Life so I ask a lot of questions. I start with what kind of experience would you like to have? This question really never works out well, because newbies don' t know what is here. So I ask a different way, do you like ... role play? Shopping ? Poetry or storytelling? Do you want to learn about... new career? Outer space? Music ? Art ? Do you want to experience university life? Science ? Or his tory? Would you like to do something you cannot do in real life? I can take you to a place you can have dinosaur ride, and I can help you fly higher than the virtual sky using an altitude feather 10 We can visit Dr. Who's Tardis, but I bet you are already surprised how much bigger Second Life is on the inside. Christie: Second Life is huge and they make it enormou s by exploiting a couple of little secrets. They build in and on platforms in the sky [See Figure 3] ab ove the virtual land and water. These Skyboxes and platforms are only found by teleport and sometimes you might bump into one while flying. Creative inhabitants have built Second Life into a multilayered virtual world with a multitude of hidden environments and places on top of visible ones Construction and destruction of environments is a constant in SL. In such a dynamic place it is impossible to k now just how many environments there are at any given moment. Builders utilize the capabilities of Second Life to create the illusion of larger than life spaces by understanding how to move the eye in an 8 This refers to the moving from one location to another through the use of scripts. 9 A Newbie is a new Second Life resident 10 An altitude feather is used to override the preset altitu de an avatar can fly, takes the avatar higher than the programmed atmosphere. also known as flight feather and flight bands

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21 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities environment and the person through an environment, s imilar to the way a theatrical stage is assembled, and just like a stage it can be changed quickly. The environments in Second Life are the stages the avatars perform on, and the abi lity to change a scene makes Second Life exciting but also frustrating as places disa ppear and new one s replace them on a regular basi s. There are some historic places belonging to Second Life that remain constant T he ori ginal road built in Second Life still traverse s the mainland, and the first primitive 11 (prim) sits in as corner stone in a welcome area ( See Figure 4 ) T hese simple markers provide a sense of history and stability to the residents of Second Life. Yet s ome residents want real life reminders of our global history and they recreate real life derived historic al places in Second Life. As part of this research I spent some time look ing for these real life monuments. Although, I did not think I would enjoy these places due to the ability to see them on Google image s I discovered the importance in having hist oric places in Second Life and th e ability to move through them a sense of rev erence for the nature, duration, and size of these places. I was honestly moved as I was sitting in the pew of St. Paul's Cathedral (s ee Figure 5 ) I gained a clear understa nding of the task of painting the Sistine Chapel, as lolli stood under it. A nother must see in SL is the Terracotta Warrior Army (s ee Figure 6 ). I t is a beautifully constructed installation that provide s a close and personal understanding of this amazing a rcheological discovery. Other places that I have found interesting were the University of Western Australia (UWA) and the University of Delaware (UD) for very different reasons. UWA is extremely active in new media art forms and has wonderful art exhibits as well as guest lecturers. UD campus and gallery are easy to move through They provide an interactive map able to teleport a 11 A prim is a single part of a virtual object. ( http://wiki.secondlife.co m/wiki/Primitive )

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22 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities resident to the desired location on campus. Their space is not over crowded allowing for new residents to navigate easily. T hey currently have a Warhol photo exhibit up as well as the university's art educators work displayed. Doing Something in Second Life : Seeking Connections and Experiences The creative inhabitants of SL seek and desire connections that are engaging and meanin gful and this includes maintai n ing form s of expression that blend well with virtual reality. The key is to find ways to allow for bidirectional communication and collaboration in SL Although this sounds difficult, it can be as simple as linking a comment board to images or establishing a place for residents to upload images related to the them e, thereby adding to an artistic encounter or a body of knowledge. Second Life can be a great place to display real life art of students and an art educator's person al work, if s / he utilizes the capabilities of Second Life as a multimedia environment. As a potentially educational site, is difficult to build a massive patronage of a place that is educational without including element s that represent both real and image d reality in Second Life. T he best practice is to collaborate with stakeholder s i n promoting what you want to do. lolli: I was sitting at the local diner (s ee Figure 7 ) when I receive d a group message from The Virtual A rtist Alliance reminding me it wa s Monday and time for the photohunt 12 I tell new residents all the time, t he easiest method to find out what is happening is to be a groupie 12 content requiring participants to photograph the same environment using only the viewer.

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23 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Christie: Second Life residents use in world groups to send out information, share information, organize events as well as linking friends together or community through group chat The live m usician groups are great for exploring venues as musicians move from club, restaurant, pub and beach deck parties, sometimes in the same night. I do suggest looking for grou ps that match w hat you want to do. Because there is so much t o do in Second Life I created a W ordle infograph ic ( See Figure 8) There are far too many groups to list here, but I looked at lolli's list and picked out the ones she finds to be the most helpfu l and informative in the area of art and education. These groups are the Builder's Brewery, Virtual World Best Pract ices in Education, ISTE Educational Technology Association, Linden Lab Endowments for the Arts, Real Life Education in Second Life, Universi ty of Western Australia 3Dand Design Challenge, and The V irtual Artist Alliance. The members in these groups are up to date on technology, new media and where we are heading in the future of education. lolli: If I attended and volunteered for everything I would never have time to dance. T oday I have already received group notices of a drum circle and poetry reading, a tour of Scottius Polke exhibit at Spit Screen and a n extreme rock party. It is only 8:57AM PDT 13 I think I will take a pass on the extreme rock party and drum circle. Christie: Although residents enjoy an active lifestyle with in world games and challenges, Second Life is not a game It is what the creative inhabitant make s of it and defines themselves to be within it, this view I share wi th White s understanding of the virtual world (as cited by Taylor, Ballengee Morris, and Carpente r 2010 ). It is just the nature of being in Second Life that creates this learning through play environment. The Virtual Artist Alliance understands that residents are interested in developing their talents in Second Life, and sp onsor two regularly schedule 60 minute skill based learning 13 PDT refers to Pacific Daylight Time, also known as SLT Second Life time. Linden Lab is a California based company.

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24 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities experiences for them. One is the photohunt (s ee Figure 10 ) and the other is the Haiku 14 Speed build. Using a ch osen Haiku residents have 60 minutes to go through their inventory as well as construc t a representation of the poem ( see Figure 11 ) lolli is not a builder, but she has participated in the Haiku speed build before, and received great support from the participants meaning they did not laugh. lolli: Like I said, there is a lot to do in Second Life. A nything you have imagined is probably here, or was here. Linden Lab does have communi ty standards, alt hough the rules are loosely enforced, leaving the landowners to create and enforce their own rules. Just a l ittle hint just because you can do anything, does not mean you should. I have been kicked out of a couple of places for my getting a little too crazy on a Saturday night. The key is to know the environments an d the social norms for the communities in Second Life Trust me, it's a really hard lesson to l earn, and the fun ends pretty fast when you're shot out of a club into the ocean to cool your heels. Christie: It's hard to stop lolli dancing so she just m oves to another club (See Figure 12) I per sonally am not much of a dancer because I am rarely graceful and dancing for me is like testing gravity. Lucky for lolli, she can control gravity in Second Life, ma king it an unique creative tool. lolli does get thrown out of venue s as she calls it for research. Sometim es it has been for dancing on top of speakers or where the club employees stand other times been for wearing the wrong clothes and refusing to change I have often noticed intolerance to the performance of avatars based on real life values This also shows up as discrimination based on lifestyle choices in the virtual world, by applying real life morals and expectations of society 14 Haiku is an unrhymed vers e form of Japanese origin having 3 lines unusually in a 5,7,5 syllable poem ( http://www.merriam webster.com/dictionary/haiku )

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25 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities My ca pstone project endeavored to provide a glimpse of Second Life through the lens of an ins ider, and to share snapshots of some of the people, places, and activities within Seco nd Life In my professional and personal pursuit to understand the complexit y of v irtual reality, I considered research on visual culture and media culture I discovered quickly there is a long standing conversation on the influences of techno logy and media on our society. My thinking has been greatly influenced by McLuhan (2003) and Po stman (1993) Second Life is a virtual environment, a canvas, a chat room, and a place for collaboration, innovation, commerce, and education. Second Life residents use computers and software to develop characters, places, and to perform as resident s of th is virtual environment. They seek connections (both virtual and sometimes real) with other inhabitants through new digital media electronic social networks, and technology. They apply real world values and standards to their SL world, but with some incons tancy. Avatars exist as the inhabitant s of SL, where they create and express themselves form associations with other SL avatars, and develop their abilities, all the while reflecting influences of personal values and the larger visual cult ure in which these creators live Second Life was developed to be and is used as a creative, virtual environment that fosters innovation by making possible collaboration with residents from around the (real) world It is an open environment with no obvio us social economic or political hierarchy (other than the means of access, which arguably does represent some degree of economic security) All forms of knowledge are accepted and appreciated as valuable in SL but the ability to create sites, events,

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26 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities and p ersonas (avatars) in SL using digital technology and new media creatively and skillfully in SL does promote popula rity there, and earns the respect of creative inhabitants. As part of my capstone research project, I focused my attention on on e particular group ing of creative inhabitants who normally could be found at Orientation I sland public. This group provided a window to the ways digital technology and new media are being used in SL As I sat on the eighth fence post in Orientation Island I was ab le to observe avatar cre ation and performance from another perspective that is not my own (s ee Figure 13 ) Creating environments in SL is not particularly easy. D u ring my research on Second Life I explored the possibility of my own gal lery owne rship. I quickly learned that I had not planned the process out well. My gallery was empty because I had not li ned up artists or personal work I did not plan a budget and spent $200 (real money) within weeks, purchasing more space than I needed, buying it ems not necessary to achieve my goal and uploading images 15 i n addition to generally being unprepared as the region in which I built my gallery r ole played an annual hurricane (see Figure 14) These expensive missteps are similar to real life experiences o f ownership and would make a great learning opportunity for art students. The benefit of doing something like this in Second Life is accessibility to knowledge, artists, real life profit possible, innovative thinking in museum studies with possible immedi ate action through experimentation In addition, s tudents can develop themes that make sense to them, and promote in world juri ed shows and even solicit for artists who are not currently in Second Life 15 In Second Life, one makes purchases with Linden Dollars, which a re the form of currency in SL. One acquires Linden Dollars through a variety of means, including purchasing Lindens with a (real) credit card from Linden Lab. One can purchase Lindens right in the SL environment (see http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/How_to_Earn_Linden_Dollars_in_Second_Life ).

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27 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Second Life is meant to be fun for the art educat or and the students, but I also know from personal experience McLuhan 's warning to keep our "wits" about us when dealing with media's influenc e is good advice in Second Life With that said here are a few of lolli's tips for the art educator. Art educato rs interested in avatar creation and performance should understand it is not merely a lighthearted adventure, but an emotiona l process that requires time and a well thought curricular plan The process s hould include traditional media (pencils, paint, etc. ) to allow students both to plan ideas and to give them a break from the input of the virtual environment. S pend a great deal of time studying with students how avatar performance s within the different SL environments develop s identity (Laio, 2010). Alth ough, a large part of the creative aspect of Second Life is held within avatar creation and performance, avatar identity creation in an art lesson might be too large of a task to formally explore in a K 12 classroom. This does not mean that other forms of identity exploration or the creation of images representing alter egos or personas would not have value, particularly in the form of role play with real world application s D iversify the people you and your students seek to meet in Second Life O ne of the best wa ys to do this is through groups. I suggest joining at least one live musician's group as they move from venue to venue, and send out mass teleport offers. This provide s an easy method of seeing different environments in Second Life with the sa me group of people Second L ife is not a closed world where residents are living detached from reality, so bring your passions into Second Life.

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28 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Teach students to e ducate residents through their profile, and to talk to other residents about what it is you r avatar does or is interested in doing I once read a tip that said don't ask SL residents about their real life while in SL. I have an amendment to that tip just read the profile s of SL residents. These SL profiles may contain interesting information and sometimes the profiles of SL residents will tell you if they don't want to talk about real life Second Life depends on the knowledge you bring into this virtual world. If you are promoting it through curriculum, through research, or if you are sen ding students here, know this place intimately. Knowing Second Life does not mean spending ten hours a day here, it mean s taking note of some of the residents, environments, and events taking place in SL, and reason for them. Get to know t he creation s the details, and most of all the people in SL They help explain the environment. There are many informative conversa tions happening in Second Life at any given time G uide students to develop awareness through critical analysis of influences that shape thei r identities and values, both in relation to digital media, and offline in the real world (Dart s, 2004; Delacruz, 2009; Tillander, 2010). Final Thoughts When I first beca me a Second Life resident there was some hiding behind my avatar, but that is not the case any longer. We all, including myself, want to be accepted for ourselves and our talents in both real life and virtual reality. Recently, I met a new resident and he was surprised how friendly Second Life inhabitants are. I told him residents want him t here so be present I believe Second Life is a rt. I might not always agree with what it says and at time s I

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29 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities don't understand it, but then it is m y responsibility to study, learn, and critically analyze it I also have to experience and describe it so I am able to understand myself better. I do believ e strongly and without a doubt that art educators need to assist student s in navigating t heir roles and identities in th e virtual future /frontier As Hillis (1999) understood the exploration and transference of identity can be healthy, but can also be "dangerous if fragmentation is already a problematic feature of their real (cited in Taylor, Ballengee Morris, Carpenter, 2010 p 214 ). lolli: Sometimes I feel as though have been dropped from the talles t building, just so Christie c an make sure she is real Other times I can see her watching me, as if I have her answers. She watches my body move and stands at her desk attempting to mimic me. She sits silently watching my poor choices and allowing the st ory to play out around me. I wonder how far back our history goes, as she allows herself to be hurt at time s by my a ctions and laughs at my inside jokes. Christie: Sometimes I take lolli to the edge of Second Life, where there is not horizon and no arti ficial sky and I let her go, and watch her fall to the ground. Her animation causes her to push herself up from t he virtual concrete and stand without scratch. She dusts herself o ff and looks around and in her mind she repeats the words I said when I was a child, "see that trick". She is resilient. She is my creation, and has developed a life of her own, but also she effects my life. She speaks with knowledge and passion ; I sit amazed by her. I am her number one fan, as she is accepting and s trong ; she is perfectly imperfect I love her just as she is, but changes in digital technology and new media have made her outdated. Her skin, hair, and size are all becoming obsolete. Second Life content creator s are standardizing with the gaming industry so their wo rk can cross virtual platform s Overtime she will not be able to find clothes, fit in chairs, and function like other residents.

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30 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Five years ago I created an avatar to be a character in a story in a made up world As I started to create and perform in t his role, I realized I was incorporating my own personal experiences and insecurities in to the creation and activities of my avatar What I thought was a theatrical production developed into a shift in my thinking allowing both lolli and I space to explore ways to develop my own voice and understandings through this process. This is how the vast majority of residents I have spoken with also rediscover their creativity. The innovation, education, and creative aspects of Second Life are found in the real life people who have taken on these virtual personas They share knowledge through self creation and conversation s within the places they have create d and cho se n to dwell within (if only part time). The opportunities for creative and educational exchanges in t he virtual world develop out of the people within Second Life. lolli started off as a Linden Lab standard avatar, and over the last five year she went from fictional character, to artist, to being a University of Florida graduate student def ending Secon d Life as a place for creat ive and educational opportunities I would have to say that is pretty good for an avatar.

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31 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities R eferences Allnutt, S. (2009). Knowing my place: Learning through memory and photography (Doctorial dissertation). Retrieved from Librar y and Archives Canada. (978 0 494 53633 9) Baldwin, D. (2010). What can a second life teach me about me?: Writing our second identity Retrieved from http://dmp.osu.edu/dmac/supmaterials/Baldwin.pd f Boellstorff, T. (2008). Coming of age in Second Life Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton Press. Darts, D. (2004). Visual culture jam: Art, pedagogy, and creative resistance Studies in Art Education, A Journal of Issues and Research, 45(4) 313 327. Retrieved from http://steinhardt.nyu.edu/scmsAdmin/uploads/00 1/665/VisCultJAM.pdf Delacruz, E. M. ( 2009). Art education aims in the age of new media: Moving toward global civil society. Art Education 62(5) 13 18. Retrieved from http://www.arteducators.org/research/art education Duncum, P. (2001). Visual cult ure: D evelopments, definitions and directions for art education. Art Education 42 (2) 101 112. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1321027 Dyson, M. (2007). My story in a profession of stories: Auto ethnography an empowering methodology for educators. Au stralian Journal of Teacher Education, 32(1) 36 48 Retrieved from http ://ro.ecu.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1374&context=ajte Friesen, N. (2009). Chronicles of change: The narrative turn and e learning research. Retrieved from http://learningspace s.org/n/narrative.pdf

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32 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Glen, C. (2011). Educational relevance of t he arts in a technocratic world E ducation 1 (17) ( 1 8). Retrieved from http://www.ineducation.ca Gottschalk, S. (2010). The presentation of avatars in second life: Self and interaction in s ocial virtual spaces. Symbolic interaction 33 (4) 501 525. Retrieved from http://www.academia.edu/968353/The_Presentation_of_Avatars_in_Second_Life_Self_a nd_Interaction_and_Social_Virtual_Spaces Inman, C. Wright, V. & Hartman J. (2010) Use of Second L ife in k 12 and high er education: A review of research. Journal of Interactive Online Learning 9(1) 44 63. Retrieved from http://www.ncolr.org/issues/jiol/v9/n1/use of second life in k 12 and higher education a review of research#.UUeA9Bysh8E Liao, C. L (2010) Avatar as p edagogy: Critical strategies for visual culture in the virtual environment. In R. W. Sweeny (Ed.), Inter/actions/inter/sections: Art education in a digital visual culture (pp.182 188). Reston, VA: National Art Education Association. Lin den, R. (2006). Resident. Second Life wiki. Retrieved from http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Resident Maxwell, J. A. (2004). Methods: What will you actually do? In J. A. Maxwell, Qualitative Research Design: An Interactive Approach (pp. 95 99). Thousand Oaks CA: Sage. McLuhan, M. (2003). The medium is the message. In N. Wardrip Fruin & N. Mont fort (Eds.), The New Media Reader (pp. 203 209). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press

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33 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities New media. (n.d.). In PC M ag Encyclopedia Retrieved from http ://www.pcmag.com/encyclopedia/ term/47936/new media Postman, N. (1993). Technopoly: The surrender of culture to technology New York, New York: Vintage Books. Rak. J. (2009) The electric self: Doing virtual r esearch for real in Second Life Biography An Interdisciplinary Quarterly 32( 1) 148. doi : 10.1353/bio.0.0081 Schafer, E. (2003). Digital technology. Dictionary of American History. Retrieved from http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G2 3401801216.html Stokrocki, M. (1997). Qualitative forms of research methods. In S.D. LaPierre & E. Z immerman (Eds.) Research Methods and Methodologies for Art Education, (pp. 35 56). Reston, VA. Tavin, K., & Hausman, J. (2004) Art education and visual culture in the age of globalization, i n Art Education, 57(5) 47 52. Retrieved from: http://www.jstor.or g/stable/3194104 Taylor, P. G., Ballengee Morris C., Carpenter, B. S. (2010). Digital visual culture, social networking, and virtual worlds: Second Life and art education. In R.W. Sweeny (Ed.), Inter/actions/inter/sections: Art education in a digital visua l culture (pp.210 218).Reston, VA: National Art Education Association. Tillander M. (2010). Digital visual culture: The paradox of the [in]visible. In R.W. Sweeny (Ed.), Inter/actions/inter/sections: Art education in a digital visual culture (pp.51 60). R eston, VA: National Art Education Association.

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34 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities List of Figures with Figure Captions Figure1 This is the sign at Orientation Island. I still do not know what it is really implying. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Orientation%20Island%20Public/98/169/33 Figure 2 I created her but she has influence over who I am. Figure 3 A skybox is an affordable alternative to living on the virtual land. This image shows t he inside and outside of one of unlimited themes available for a skybox. They are often the choice of residents wanting privacy, as they can only be accessed through teleport. But they can also be extra retail space as well as building platforms. Figure 4 This is a Second Life historical site located at Nova Albion. Nova Albion is a welcome area in Second Life. The environment is reflect of a city this primitive (prim ) sits as a corner stone to where the retail shops begin. Location: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Miramare/11/16/26 Figure 5 lolli kneels in the pew of the St. Paul's Cathedral in Second Life. In real life, lolli height would be 6ft.5in She is dwarfe d in this place. By visually seeing her as reference, I now have a better sense of the size of this historic cathedral. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Grace/66/242/130 Figure 6 Terracotta Warrior Army in Second Life is a must see. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Tenth%20Rua/93/77/1260 Figure 7 lolli is sitting at her favorite local diner in Secon d Life. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Onyx%20Isle/72/77/26

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35 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 8 This Wordle infographic describes what creative inhabitants of Second Life are doing right now. Figure 9 Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education is an intentional group of educators, working not just in Second Life but also in all the virtual worlds. The group hosts an annual Massively Open Online Conference (MOOC). In 2012, lolli volunteered to work as a presenter trainer. She was assigned an Italian educator, using Second Life as a place to teach machinima 16 to students as part of developing English as a Second language. Figure 10. Photohunts are a great way to see interesting places in Second Life, wor k on photography skills, self editing, presenting, and critiquing art work. This gallery is also unique as it houses a year's worth of images with landmarks attached. This a great way to find interesting places to visit. lolli got 3rd place on this day. Location: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Afar/176/167/2667 Figure 11 Artists: First Place: Ami Tamura, Second Place: preferred to remain anonymous Haiku Speed bu ild is a weekly contest hosted by The Virtual Artist Alliance in Second Life. Artists using only items from their inventory and the build tools available in their viewer, have 60 minutes to interrupt and create an installation or sculpture based on the rev ealed Haiku. Location: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Afar/133/162/609 Figure 12 lolli dances at Hotlanta Blues in Second Life. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Northfarthing/59/215/601 16 videos created in real time in a 3D virtual environment.

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36 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 13 This is a normal day on Orientation Island. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Orientation%20Island%20Public/98/169/33 Figure 14 lolli borrowed a rowboat to see the damage to her newly opened art gallery, after hurricane Charles flooded the city. The city is still trying to rebuild, but unfo rtunately lolli was forced to abandon the Silhouette Gallery, as she had no flood insurance http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/New%20Toulouse/162/63/23

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37 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 1. This i s the sign at Orientation Island. I still do not know what it is really implying. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Orientation%20Island%20Public/98/169/33

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38 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 2 I created her but she has influence over who I am.

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39 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 3. A skybox is an affordable alternative to living on the virtual land. This image shows the inside and outs ide of one of unlimited themes available for a skybox. They are oft en the choice of residents wanting privacy, as they can only be accessed through teleport. But they can also be extra retail space as well as building platforms.

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40 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 4 This is a Second Life historical site located at Nova Albion. Nova Albion is a welcome area in Second Life. The environment is reflect of a city this primitiv e (prim ) sits as a corner stone to where the retail shops begin. Location: http://maps.se condlife.com/secondlife/Miramare/11/16/26

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41 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 5. lolli kneel s in the pew of the St. Paul's Cathedral in Second Life In real life, lolli height would be 6ft.5in She is dwarfed in this place. By visually seeing her as reference, I now have a bet ter sense of the size of this historic cathedral. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Grace/66/242/130

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42 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 6 Terracotta Warrior Army in Second Life is a must see. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Tenth%20Rua/93/77/1260

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43 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 7. lolli is sitting at her favorite local diner in Second Life http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Onyx%20Isle/72/77/26

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44 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 8 This Wordle infographic describes what creative inhabitants of Second Life are doing right now.

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45 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 9 Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education is an int entional group of educators, working not just in Second Life but also in all the virtual worlds. The group hosts an annual Massively Open Online Conference (MOOC). In 2012, lolli volunteered to work as a presenter trainer. She was assigned an Italian educa tor, using Second Life as a place to teach machinima 17 to students as part of developing English as a Second language. 17 videos created in real time in a 3D virtual environment.

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46 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 10 Photohunts are a great way to see interesting places in Second Life work on photography skills, self editing presenti ng, and critiquing art work This gallery is also unique as it houses a year's worth of images with landmarks attached This a great way to find interesting places to visit. lolli got 3rd place on this day. Location: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Afar/176/167/2667

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47 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 1 1 Artists: First Place: Ami Tamura, Second Place: preferred to remain anonymous Haiku Speed build is a weekly contest hosted by The Vir tual Artist Alliance in Second Life. Artists using only items from their inventory and the build tools available in their viewer, have 60 minutes to interrupt and create an installation or sculpture based on the revealed Haiku Location: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Afar/133/162/609

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48 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 12 lolli dances at Hotlanta Blues in Second Life. http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Northfarthing/59/215/601

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49 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 13 This is a normal day on Orientation Island. http://maps.secondlife.com/ secondlife/Orientation%20Island%20Public/98/169/33

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50 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Figure 14 lolli borrowed a rowboat to see the damage to her new ly opened art gallery after hurricane Charles flooded the city. The city is still trying to rebuild but unfortunately lolli was forced to abandon the Silhouette Gallery, as she had no flood insurance http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/New%20Toulouse/162/63/23

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51 Second Life: creative and educational possibilities Author Biography I am an augmented new media artist/educator. My research area is digital technology, new media and virtual reality, mainly Second Life. I explore avatar creation and performance as narrative while exploring my shifting realities (real and virtual) as part of the creative process. In 2000, I received my Bachelors in Studio Art from The University of West Florida. Since then, I have put my talents to use working with before and after school programs, as well as resident and day camp programs I have held positions with the Girl Scout s of America, local government recreation department and private companies Currently, my family is in the process of moving from Virginia to Hawaii. We are excited to have the opp ortunity to immerse ourselves in the Hawaiian culture over the next three years. I am curious to see how this change will influence my art To find out what is happening with lolli Sapphire, just stop into Second Life and say hello. If y ou are a little shy, you can also check out her profile at https://my.secondlife.com/lolli.sapphire as she updates it with images of th e places and people she meets along her journey.