Sepia toned photograph of iRez Virtual Salon authors Vaneeesa Blaylock and Strawberry Singh

Meet The Virtual Salon

Sepia toned photograph of iRez Virtual Salon authors Vaneeesa Blaylock and Strawberry Singh
Vaneeesa Blaylock, Strawberry Singh

THE BLOGOSPHERE, 13 August — Meet Pamela is one of the greatest films never made. It’s the fictional fiction film being made by the fictional real film crew in François Truffaut’s love poem to filmmaking, Day for Night. Today we have Meet iRez, a brief hello to a few of the real people who participate in our virtual salon.

Gertrude Stein plaque at the site of her former apartment in Paris

Virtual Salon?

Exactly 100 years ago, the world’s most famous physical salon, Gertrude Stein’s apartment at 27 Rue de Fleurus in Paris, was a big conversation about art, culture, and ideas. Today in the iRez virtual salon we have a global conversation that exists in a virtual place. Here many salon participants explore new perspectives on reality in the 21st century using The Avatar, The MMO, and other Cultural Venues as sites of identity, experience, and community.


Principal Authors

Here is a brief introduction to some of iRez’ principal authors. For the terms of use for their content, please visit:

Botgirl's Gravitar profile photo

Botgirl Questi

For the past 4 years Botgirl’s Identity Circus has been, well, a “three-ring” exploration of identity in the 21st century. Sometimes it takes a “good war” for a peace activist to find their voice, and the “Hitler invading Poland” of The Nymwars, Vic Gundotra’s hunt to Out and Ban pseudonymous identities from Google+ provided an enormous creative burst of works from Botgirl.

Botgirl’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
What if Rod Was One of Us?
Topless at Whole Foods
Enter a 3D Virtual World in Less than a Minute

Botgirl online: Blog Twitter Facebook Google+ Flickr

Gravatar profile image for Eva. Shows side of head with hair and headphones but not actual face

Eva Marie

Like Ravanel, Eva’s an MMO Blogger I learned about through the Newbie Blogger Initiative. Her blog, Image Heavy is a celebration of glorious photography. But that’s actually not how she came to be an iRez author. It was our lone voice from that category defining MMO, World of Warcraft, Ironyca, who said how much she loved Eva’s blog and thought she’d be a wonderful addition to our conversation. (and help Ironyca in the iRez WoW:SL author ratio! 😛

Eva’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
Wherein There are Details
Viya & the Angry Naga

Eva online: Blog Twitter

Gravatar profile image for Ironyca Lee, showing silhouette of her World of Warcraft avatar

Ironyca Lee

Ironyca is a long time World of Warcraft player and blogger. Her blog, Ironyca Stood in the Fire, received significant community response even before she became a co-host of The WoW Factor a highly popular transmogrification competition held live in-world and streamed online. I’ve personally spent time with Ironyca in 5 worlds: World of Warcraft, Blue Mars, Cloud Party, InWorldz, and Second Life.

Ironyca’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
Frozen in Porcelain
A Tourist Guide to WoW – City Break
A Tourist Guide to WoW – Gallywix Pleasure Palace

Ironyca online: Blog Twitter Facebook

Gravitar profile photo for Kathleen Cool

Kathleen Cool

It feels like art & technology have a unique resonance in our contemporary moment. Yet the quest for lapis lazuli or the invention of equal temperament tuning were at the nexus of art and technology long ago. Either way, I’ve never, RL or VR, met a computer & information science PhD candidate with anything like Kathleen’s extraordinary knowledge and love of art and culture. I can’t wait to hear where her mind, and her dissertation, will go next!

Kathleen’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
Previz #67 – Charlotte, Forever
The Virtual Salon
LEA or Bust

Kathleen Cool

Gravatar image of Kristine Schomaker / Gracie Kendal, showing Gracie avatar wearing "skin" made of Kristine's paintings

Kristine Schomaker

Like so many of us, Kristine has long struggled with identity and body image. When she first created her avatar Gracie and entered Second Life, she said that she felt like herself, for the first time in her life. A long time RL painter and VR performance, photography, and media artist, most recently she’s created a number of engaging Mixed Reality pieces where people and experiences in physical and virtual space interact.

Kris’ iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
The Bald & The Beautiful
Life Imitating Art, Imitating Beauty
This is My Body!!

Kristine online: Blog Facebook Google+

Profile photo of Marmaduke Arado in which is is upside down with his hands in the air

Marmaduke Arado

Along with many in VR space, I’ve been a longtime fan of the performance series The Extraordinary Adventures of Kikas & Marmaduke, and a follower of his inspired Flickr photostream, but to be honest, when I asked if he might like to participate in our “World Today” photo challenge, I really hadn’t imagined that he’d become the #1 photographer on iRez, posting a magnificent series of amazing images from exotic virtual destinations.

Marma’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
Chris Lorraine Sofee’s Island in the Sky
Kikas’ Protector Bot
Petrovsky Flux, an installation by Blotto Epsilon

Marmaduke online: Facebook Flickr

Profile photo of Ravanel Griffon showing her reading a book

Ravanel Griffon

A player of and blogger on 3 virtual worlds: Lord of the Rings Online, Star Wars: The Old Republic, and Mass Effect, Ravanel describes her blog Ravalation as the diary of a gamer girl on a screenshot spree. She’s also managed to explore the identity potential in a single-player world, and how that transforms in the different levels of narrative and community in MMO spaces. Look for Ravanel’s amazing 5-part Avatar Adventures series coming to iRez soon!

Ravanel’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
Rav’s Tour of Three Worlds
It’s Turquoise & It Squeeks
It’s Pink & It Bites

Ravanel online: Blog

Image of Strawberry Singh's gravatar profile pix showing a close-up of the lower-right part of her face, with big, red lips and a red strawberry drop earring

Strawberry Singh

Fashion, lifestyle, and photography blogger, store or PR manager for several of Second Life’s top fashion retailers, social media junkie, and helpful tutorial writer, it’s fair to say that Berry is the Queen of All Virtual Media! Busy as she is at, Zaara, Le.Look! and Maitreya, Berry’s been gracious enough to join iRez and share a bit of that glorious fashion and lifestyle sense with us.

Berry’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
Summer Air
Restless Heart
Leo the Lion

Berry online: Blog Twitter Facebook Google+ Flickr

Vaneeesa Blaylock's Gravatar profile headshot

Vaneeesa Blaylock

My virtual life has been filled with serendipity. Or drunk walks. Or drunk dialing. Somehow “serendipity” and “drunk” feel so different, yet both suggest a path that makes so much sense in retrospect, but isn’t obvious in its discovery or unfolding. I love the Museum of Jurassic Technology’s motto, …guided along as it were, a chain of flowers into, the mysteries of life. My experience of Community in MMOs has been so unexpected and so rich.

Vaneeesa’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
Performance Document: VB01 – Girl Next Door
Building Communities with Strangers
Previz #68 – Avatar Pride Parade

Vaneeesa online: Blog Twitter Facebook Google+ Flickr

Yordie Sands Gravatar profile photo

Yordie Sands

One of the ways that Yordie describes herself is “cheerleader,” and it’s the description that I like the best. Oh, believe-you-me, if the sim-crossings on the Blake Sea are less than perfect, the expletives will fly in Linden Lab’s direction, so a “corporate shill,” she is not. Still, while peeps like Botgirl or myself are analytic or critical, Yordie has that magic quality of belief. Like a great artist or orator she possesses an authenticity that can’t be manufactured.

Yordie’s iRez Home Page

S A M P L E . P O S T S
An Island of Sanity
A World of Nature & Beauty – Calas Galadhon
My SL Romance – He Filled My Life With Hope

Yordie online: Blog Twitter Facebook Google+ Flickr


If, as you’re reading this, you’re thinking that you should be an iRez Guest Author, well, you’re probably right! Leave a comment below and let us know what you’d like to post about.

As a virtual public artist my work invites avatar communities to express their identity, explore their culture, and demand their civil rights.

8 thoughts on “Meet The Virtual Salon

  1. We got the coach (clap clap)
    We got the team (clap clap)
    We got the pep!
    We got the steam!
    Yaaaaaaaaaaaaay Team!!

    I have no idea what I’ve become Vaneeesa, but I think your description is about as good as any. And i do like the “authentic” thing. Hugs & kissies

  2. Btw, I just did a 2nd read of this article and have to say, what an amazing assemblage of points of view.

    POV means a lot to me. A long time ago I read Alan Kay’s paper* where he offered up an idea from Xerox PARC, “Point of view is worth 80 IQ points.” That notion cemented the value of POV into my thought process ever since. I see its value revealed again and again, like a magic elixir. And I offer his paper up again and again…

    *Predicting the Future, Alan Kay

    1. You’re so right Yordie! I feel so truly fortunate to be having this conversation with you and the other amazing peeps in this salon — yay us! — hahaha, not a mutual admiration society AT ALLLLL!!!!

      Maybe we should wear our cheerleader uniforms for VB42 – Avatar Pride Parade!! 😀

      Oh, PS: I need a little photo “Romance on the High Seas” — do you think you and a friend could snap something cute on your speedboat… in the body of water of your choice?

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