Mental Awareness Month

Highlights from the Second Life Destination Guide – 05/13/2022

Destination Guide

Zen at Astoria.jpg
Pictured: Zen at Astoria

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. If you’re struggling, know that you are not alone. I wanted to highlight some destinations that offer support within the Second Life community and a place to find your inner peace because everyone deserves the opportunity to reflect on their mental health in a safe and meaningful way.


Impact Mental Health

Mental health issues are common and are not something that anyone should feel ashamed of. Impact offers incredible peer support by people who’ve already been through, or are going through, the same things as you. Whether you just want to listen in, get something off your chest, speak to a mentor, attend a group meeting or just play games with people who are ok with every part of you, Impact is a great place for you. If you need support, please join their group ‘Impact Mental Health’ or click on the boards located in the foyer of the main building and an available Mentor will contact you.

Visit in Second Life



Nirvana Island

Nirvana Island is a sanctuary for your soul dedicated to well-being. All faiths and points of view are welcome. Diverse traditions and systems are harmoniously connected in this beautiful natural landscape full of treasures for mind, body, or spirit. There are daily group meetings and events. If you are in need of healing, solace, or sanctuary – you will find it here.

Visit in Second Life



Transgender Resource Center

The TRC is a safe place for Transgender people and their allies to join and talk about the issues they face. Weekly Support Groups are available.

Visit in Second Life



Braided Lives

Braided Lives is a multi-platform initiative designed to bring people from all walks of life together to tell their stories and collaborate on the creation of a more equitable and sustainable future. The concept was born in response to the isolation, stress, anger, and frustration that have resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing racial tensions. For more info, visit

Visit in Second Life



Mindful Cove

Mindful Cove exists to provide both an entry point into Second Life, and an ongoing community region for newcomers and long-time residents alike, based on the core principle that SL can be an excellent place to engage in activities that support emotional and mental well-being.

Visit in Second Life



Center for Mindfulness

Mindfulness can literally transform your entire world from the inside out and for the millions of mindfulness practitioners around the world, it’s doing just that! Come and discover the most incredible and wonderful surprise: everything you’ve been searching for ‘out there’ feelings of fulfillment, peace, and wholeness, have been within you all along. The Center for Mindfulness is a beautiful and calming place to come meditate and learn a few mindful tricks. Learn more at

Visit in Second Life



SL Project Hope

SL Project Hope was created to empower and support survivors individually and collectively. They are committed to fostering hope, opportunity, peace, and empowerment for all those who are on a healing journey.

Visit in Second Life



Retiro Zen

In the times we live in, we need to find our peace, come to know your inner power, become the wonderful person you have hidden in you and reach the spiritual level you always dreamed of. Connect with the universe, we are all one!

Visit in Second Life



Reiki Healing Center

Reiki Healing Center is a place to share Reiki treatments; to relax, meditate, practice Tai Chi, yoga and more.

Visit in Second Life



Zen at Astoria

A beautiful quiet spot to relax, have some me-time, do some yoga or meditate. Enjoy the silence and create a moment for your inner self at this place, you deserve this!

Visit in Second Life

Have A Great Week From All Of Us At Zoha Islands/ Fruit Islands

Avatar Influencer Strawberry Singh

As She Celebrates 15 Years in Second Life, Avatar Influencer Strawberry Singh Discusses the Tedium of Creator Credits & Ways to Bring Back the Fun

Strawberry Singh SL blog credits Linden Lab

Strawberry Singh, who became the SL community’s top social media influencer and then went on to work for Linden Lab in 2019, has a new post celebrating her 15 years in the virtual world. It includes a surprising confession — she almost quit SL entirely, mainly due to the tedium of posting credits to her avatar fashion reviews:

I had been feeling like the creative light Second Life had always been for me was diminishing because I was getting bogged down with doing mesh head reviews. I have to be honest with you, I absolutely hated doing those videos. I had come to a point where I loathed all the time I was putting into reviewing things and sharing style credits and not being able to just be more creative and have the time to do fun things in Second Life.

“Writing out style credits for every single item I was wearing in each post was a lot of work back then,” she tells me. “I had so many blogs just saved as drafts at a time and I couldn’t publish them until I took at least 30 minutes to sit there and write out all the style credits. It was time-consuming, exhausting, and not fun at all.” (She hastens to add that she’s still glad she made those reviews: “[A]s much as I was tired of it at the end, I know how important those videos were and many people have reached out to me and said that they learned a lot from [them].”)

This is actually a common theme in SL social media, and a recurring complaint that comes up when Cajsa writes about Second Life fashion blogs — either the creator credits are non-existent, incomplete, or not informative enough for readers to know where they might buy those listen items. It’s the blessing and curse of a virtual world where everything is user-generated: If you’re really trying to give credits to every creator whose work is depicted in a screenshot, it’s a painstaking process where you will need to credit the creator of everything in view, up to and including the literal sky.

That to one side, Strawberry has ideas for how the community could inject more fun into the social media ecosystem of SL:

“I’d love to see more people get into creating videos. Either adding them to their blog posts or just sharing them on socials. Our avatars are beautiful and the animations available are just incredible too so to capture that on video, it looks amazing.” (See her Instagram video above for inspiration.) 

It’s why I did the OBS Tutorial again recently, because people kept asking me how to create videos. I hope it gets more people into doing that. Exploring and recording different destinations or making videos of their avatars dancing, and including their friends, etc. It will make their whole blogging experience more fun.”

Agreed! I’m somewhat biased, but I’ve enjoyed watching the Seracast videos for that very reason

As for a less tedious way of creating credit lists, Berry believes there’s a HUD which may do that, but forgot the production information. In other words, it’s difficult for us to credit the creator of a credit creator.

I actually think this might be something Linden Lab could better solve: As all this data already exists on the asset database, wouldn’t it be relatively easy to add a function which generates a list of all the creators associated with an avatar, including attachments and their current location on?

Update, 4:45pm PT: Berry just recalled there’s an output function for your outfit details, at least — in the official viewer. Watch below:

I just remembered there is a way to save your outfit details in the Outfits menu in the viewer. I made a quick video to show.

Alter Ego

FOX ‘s Alter Ego: A Mixed Reality Competition Show from Producers Who Don’t Understand Avatars or Why Virtual Worlds Make Them Real

Above: Pop star Grimes, who believes reality is a virtual world created by an omniscient AI, explains how Alter Ego works

Months after its producers began scouting among the Second Life community for avatar-based performers, the avatar-based reality competition show Alter Ego is here: Watch on Fox TV’s site

I just saw the first episode and I have mixed feelings about its mixed reality presentation. Fundamentally, the whole concept seems to be directed at an audience who don’t quite understand how virtual world avatars work, created by producers who definitely don’t know how they work. Which is strange, because the vast majority of the show’s target Gen Y/Z audience (I’m tempted to say all of them) have an avatar in Fortnite and other virtual worlds.

Speaking of which, as I suspected, the show uses Unreal, the graphics engine that also runs Fortnite:

To film, Alter Ego relies on 14 cameras, eight of which use advanced camera-tracking technologies. “It’s not something that’s done in post,” creative producer Michael Zinman — who previously partnered with Fox on The Masked Singer — tells Rolling Stone on the still-empty studio floor. Above our heads, thousands of Infrared Reflective (IR) markers — one-inch-by-one-inch silver squares that, essentially, create a map for these cameras — twinkle like a mini galaxy. The smart cameras then communicate with Unreal Engine, a video-game design software [sic!], to render the avatars in real time.

… The problem is, outside a virtual world context like Fortnite, the Unreal avatars seem strange and disconnected from the live audience and judges.

Alter Ego FOX reality show avatar virtual world Unreal

And while I like the concept of real people who were previously afraid to perform in real life, afraid they’d be judged on their real life appearance because they don’t fit the expected mold… that’s already a core concept to the reality show competition format! (Hello, Susan Boyle became famous for that very reason back in 2009.) 

No: The magic of avatars is not the 3D graphics in and of itself, but the immersive social context of the virtual world in which they appear. It’s why hundreds if not thousands of people now have full-time professions as performers in countless virtual worlds.

I’m hopeful the show succeeds but it’s hard to see that happening, especially after the mocap gimmick wears off. Again, it’s still missing the opportunity of recruiting virtual world-based performers like Skye Galaxy from Second Life or TFMJonny from VRChat to appear, bringing those worlds’ fanbases with them. to cheer them on. But maybe that’s coming up in later episodes.

If the show survives long enough, that is, because… yikes:

I’m working on the assumption that Alter Ego will be canned after a single episode, because for my own sake I have to place some faith in mankind. But if it isn’t, and this wretched series eventually ends up with a winner, then who will actually become famous? Is it the shy, fallible human who performs backstage with a camera stuck to their forehead? Or is it their perfect avatar? For the life of me, I hope it’s the former. Singing competitions have always carried a sheen of exploitation to them, so imagine how much worse it would be when you’re put to work as the workhorse component of a cartoon fairy. It doesn’t bear thinking about.

Hand on heart, Alter Ego is the worst thing I have seen on television in a decade. Please, someone, fire this monstrosity into the sun so it cannot hurt us any more.

A very special thank you to Wagner James and nwn for this opinion post.

Have a Great week from all of us at Zoha Islands and Fruit Islands

Tammy’s Garden

As many of you know we lost a beloved staff member who had been apart of the Zoha Islands Team for many years.
She passed away April 15th, 2022. Along with the help of some close friends, Tammy’s Garden, in memory of Tammiedee Mayo, is now open to leave cards, memories etc for her family.

Feel free to come down and remember Tammy. The garden is on the site of her former home and even has 2 trees that belonged to her. All visitors are welcome to (and encouraged to) leave a sympathy notecard in one of the several tables located throughout the garden (please keep the sympathy cards family friendly as they will be shared with her RL  son). The garden will be open to the public until May 20th.


Second Life Creator in Occupied Ukraine

City Keeps Selling Her Virtual Fashion to Help Support Her Family. A Russian Friend is Assisting Her.

OSMIA second life Ukraine Russia

Among the many strange moments amid an utterly horrible war, this one must be the most surreal: Hanna of OSMIA, a leading Second Life brand, is a Ukraine citizen in real life, and since Russia’s invasion, has been hiding out in her now-occupied city. She is now nearly 7 months pregnant. But because OSMIA is a key income source for her and her now-growing family, she must still maintain her virtual world brand. And after many weeks of sporadic Internet service — what with a genocidal war happening around her — she was finally able to upload a new avatar fashion release, pretty clothes for glamorous, carefree avatars:

“I am from Ukraine and there is a war in my country, I am in a city under Russian occupation,” as she put it simply on her OSMIA Facebook page. “Now I have the Internet (for how long I don’t know). I was able to publish a release that was supposed to be released on February 25th.”

Click here for more details.

“I want to say a big thank you to the Kustom9 event and Rebel Gal for offering and giving me space for my latest release, which should have been released at the end of February,” she adds.  Notably, Rebel Gal is based in Russia, another Russian Second Life user among many who have rallied to help their Ukrainian friends while their government’s army ravages the neighboring country.

As for Hanna, who I communicate with on Facebook from time to time, I won’t say where she is now, except to say that she is thankfully much safer than she was last month. But like the rest of her nation, still far from being truly safe.

Our hearts go out to Ukraine ♥♥♥

Have a Great Week From All Of Us At Zoha Islands and Fruit Islands


Watch: Rising Indie Pop Star Aufwie Kickstarted

His Career in Second Life During the Pandemic — Now Here’s His First Music Video Shot in SL

After performing in Second Life during (and because!) of the pandemic lock down since last year, rising indie pop star Aufwie recently released his first music video shot in Second Life — watch above! Very nicely shot and edited by VRutega, Aufwie’s “throw me to the sea” because quite literal in the virtual world.

“[The machinima] uses the sea as a metaphor for oblivion and how someone can actually throw u into oblivion by forgetting about you, taking u out of their lives,” he tells me now. “Sinking as a metaphor of how depression pulls u down.”

His virtual performances in SL through 2021 helped him take his career to the next stage — both in the virtual world and across social media:

Aufwie & band IRL

The pandemic put me on a hard place by preventing me from performing in real life and doing any other type of musical activities,” as he put it to me back then. “And that’s when I started seeing it as an actual job and took a more professional approach.”

Since then he’s also launched a TikTok channel where many of his performances have gone fairly viral:

He is still, on top of that, performing on a regular basis in SL — click here to join his Discord to get gig announcements.

Something tells me he may be doing less SL shows soon, however, as he’s likely to be catapulted into the big time.

Aufwie SL pop start machinima TikTok

Thanks to his SL manager (yes he has a manager in Second Life) Dara, for the updates!

Have a great week from all of us at Zoha Islands/Fruit Islands