So, lacking the ability to work on upcoming designs, or even log in some evenings, it's reduced a lot of what I'm able to do in and around SL. I've been going through the What the Fug blog's Flickr group, and I have determined several things.
1. Fetish is fun, but don't overdo it. Seriously, unless dancing at a latex club or wandering some back corner of Zindra, the time to be full-on latex with the blow-up doll lips is never going to be when shopping for hair, or non-fetishy shoes, or...I mean, seriously, if I'm in latex head to toe, how am I even trying on demos??
2. Roleplay clothing is fine--in roleplay sims. I'm not saying it shouldn't be made--gracious, several designers would weep bitter tears if they had to stop making what keeps them in business. People buy clothing for rp because it comes in handy, and sometimes, you just can't have too many torn damsel-in-distress layers to put on!
How'ver, if you're wearing your "I just got attacked by a biker gang, oh how will I get home with my virtue intact?" best while perusing Danish modern furniture, something's more than a little off.
3. Learn proportions, and use them properly. Like as not, most people--including the ones in that photograph--really have no clue what the sliders mean. Please, for the love of all you hold holy--for the love of all I hold holy--learn what they mean! The grid has more than enough seven-foot booberific wannabe Amazons with spray-on tans littering the lesbian zones; don't add to the saturation.
4. Going back to fetish for a moment...while yes, I realize, SL is fully virtual, so you can wear every little tacky thing your heart desires because it's your world and you can so do that...don't. Like prim boobs, for instance. If you're going to wear them, there are ways to wear them well (I know, I have a friend who nearly lives in prim boobs. She shops at Ravishing Racks nigh-religiously, and she ensures that the skin on the boobs matches the skin on the rest of her). That girl? Didn't even have them adjusted properly, let alone tinted to match her skintone (mentioned in the comments: from the side she looked as if she was sprouting a second, larger pair of breasts from her first pair).
5. Don't shop naked. Just don't. It's never a good idea.
6. Pursuant to the above, if you simply must be naked in a public setting, don't wear a male skin. Especially if you're wearing breasts that big. In a lesbian club.
7. This may be covering already-covered territory, but it must be said--if a lady (*coughs*) can't see over her breasts, they are too large. Ditto if her pants end at mid-hip.
8. I'm beginning to think any variation of cut-offs should just be abolished. Especially when worn with tramp-stamp tattoos.
9. Child avatars--must I mention this?--should be dressed as goddamn children. Can we please at least agree on that point?
What that means, in realistic terms: no fishnets, no nipple tape, no heavy makeup, no black leather, no face/body piercings, no tattoos--unless your life's ambition is to reproduce in avatar form a Thai prostitution ring. (Though, if that's your life's ambition...that rather defaults to roleplay clothes, and what not to wear outside rp zones, doesn't it?)
10. This might go back to the don't-shop-naked one, but seriously--even in the club environment--is it ever a good idea to dribble semen? The sad thing is, that's not the only time I've seen that--I saw a rather overenhanced lass with a rigid attachment that...leaked...in Gritty Kitty, while we were running CSR two years back. Why some people feel compelled to expose their privates, not in private...mystifies me.
11. This again, goes back to the tragedies of jeans, on occasion, and I know this pic is eighteen months old, but the problem is, there are still people making side-hip jeans. And they still look just as ridiculous. Don't do it.
12. There's so much wrong with this picture, but I want to focus on sliders again for a minute. Even if you're trying for Playboy proportions, it's proportionate; I know sliders are hard to figure out, I know that, but it's a visual--you slide one category up, you can see your avatar change. This is not rocket science.
13. Again, this neon nightmare is from 2009, but it points up a good rule: shading is important. Especially in the post-sculpt world, shading, shadowing, fabric draping--we need to learn these things and we need to understand them and we need to ditch the outfits that don't have them--unless they are so completely stunning, that the lack of texturing really doesn't matter (and honestly, the only thing I own that I think qualifies from 2008 and back is a black velvet sheath dress with mesh inserts--because the shading? Would likely also be black....).
14. Lastly, a comment about attachments--and I'm not specifically talking about those attachments: they, also, must be in proportion to everything else. If your ears are bigger than your head? They're too big. If your tail is longer and wider than your leg, unless you're Godzilla, shrink that thing. About the only one on the grid making avatar attachments that are oversized and stylish is Vendom. If you're not wearing her stuph, size it down.
So, what have I learned tonight? People have crazy ideas in their heads about what's appropriate--or even realistic--regarding shapes and skins. A lot of the adults behind child avatars have crazy ideas about what makes up an accurate child. People have insane ideas regarding what's appropriate to be seen in in public.
But are we surprised? Seriously? Because this is Second Life, right? Where the id hangs out and every broken concept in the minds of kith and kind explodes into vivid and realistic color, shape and form.
One should feel grateful, I suppose, that it's not worse, I suppose...