Saturday, October 27, 2012

Mesh Clothing--What a Let Down

I have been hearing all this hype about mesh clothing for a long time now...actually, I heard about how "great" and "revolutionary" mesh clothing would be long before it was a reality (well over a year  now).  The way people have talked about what mesh would do for SL, for months and months to the point of it being nauseating ...has been a huge let down in my opinion where mesh clothing is concerned.

Don't get me wrong, despite my thoughts on the subject before it was introduced, Mesh IS an exciting addition to SL.  I have begun incorporating mesh with my builds, and am learning to make mesh for non-clothing items.  Creators, who are way more advanced than I am, are going wild, but mesh I think may just now be catching on for a few residents.

I think sim owners are probably ahead on the mesh incorporation curve when it comes to looking at mesh benefits can add to their venues.  I am not sure mesh has really caught on with the general resident population yet for a number of reasons:

    1) Mesh is more costly at this point in time, although it has come down considerably since the 
        upload cost seems to have come down since mesh was first introduced.
    2) Residents not wanting to invest real money in SL.  This is not a new topic for debate, it simply  
        seems more prevalent as a majority of SL Residents now EXPECT everything to be free to
        them most NOT caring their is a labor and supply cost to builders.
    3) Many Residents having limited financial RL resources due to economic factors to spend $$ in
        SL
    4) Not all Resident are ready to change from V1 type viewers to V2/3
    5) Not all Residents understand mesh or, what can be done with it. How it may impact their land
        prim limit.
    6) Limited new Resident in-world, who require SL items while older Residents have tons of
        perfectly good items already and, not ready to upgrade. 
    7) Giving away items for free, such as Group Gifts,  Hunts, MM Boards, Lucky chairs used by
        merchants to gain traffic and potential business has contributed to creating a culture of "Give it
        to me Free" or, "Give it to me for Almost Free". 

From what I can tell, mesh requires a whole different modeling mindset, especially for "rigged" clothing items.  It is a specialized skill set I think since SL has specific requirements and limitations.
It's true many making mesh clothing are delving into a new form of modeling, the skill level is just not there yet for many creators.

Okay, to get back on track, I  am no longer adamantly opposed to invisible people with half a head wandering around, I generally find it rather amusing anymore.    Reminds me of the Hans Christian Andersen's tale of the "Emperor's New Clothes" people pretending not to see the Emperor is really naked!   However, I do find I have to turn my camera away now from those who are invisible. I find it rather disconcerting to speak to someone, even in SL, if I can only partially see them.  I often wonder if others have to do that as well.

Having studied various social and psychological aspect of RL and SL.  Makes me also wonder about couples and romantic interludes in SL when one has a mesh enabled viewer and wears mesh while the other person is on non-enabled viewer.  Would the person running the non-mesh enable viewer even give the partially visible person the time of day? Things to ponder.

Just for the record, I am a dyed in the wool V1 fan, but I do use both V1 and V2/3 viewers.  Even with a V2/3 viewer, if you are running a Mac, like I do, you may still only see some parts of mesh on others...generally, they are mostly  invisible people unless they have some form of layered clothing on.  And, when it comes to building, I will take V1 over V2/3 hands down any day!

Since this is my diatribe *grins cutely*..I guess I should get back to it rather than continuing to ramble. 

Ok, here are some reasons why I CURRENTLY OPPOSE mesh clothing.

1) Mesh requires special skills to create it, much like sculpts, so the market is confined to a few designers with those skills.  Oh, sure, you can purchase full perms mesh and add your own twist to it with textures and add-on items, but you cannot really make your own.
 2) It is costly to purchase, albeit the cost of mesh clothes is much less than it was when mesh was first introduced last year, it is still pretty pricy.
3) You have to conform YOUR AV to some designer/creator's mesh not the mesh fit YOUR AV. Most mesh clothing is "rigged" meaning you cannot edit it to your shapes like you can with sculpty items.
4) Mesh Clothing is generally made to fit the designer's AV or their ideal vision of one, which is not necessarily how my AV looks. There are no clothes making standard in SL.  Unlike most layed type clothing where one size generally fits a whole range of AVS, mesh only fits for what it was created to fit.  Generally, some arbitrary standard created by the maker.
5) I want to edit my clothing...with rigged mesh you cannot edit it.
6) I do not want to wear some alpha layer that makes me invisible. I want everyone, regardless of what viewer they run, to see ALL of ME. 

The majority of mesh clothes I have seen don't even look realistic on most AVs.  It looks like some blob of clay was slathered over the AV, rolled out a bit but not enough where all the openings look like they are too thick when dried. It tends to make most female AVs look overweight and/or pregnant with larges butts.  It looks very odd in comparison with the rest of the AV.

One only has to look on Market Place to see the "baggy pants" example.  The hips/butts are distorted...people look bowlegged..crotch abnormally down to the mid thighs....totally unappealing. 
Yes, I am vaguely aware there is a "pants" limitation currently, but am unfamiliar with the full technical issue.

Sorry, but I am not a fan of the whole sagging fad...."let me show you my butt and undies"... on guys in RL.  I always have to laugh at the guys in RL trying to keep their pants up as they walk.  Maybe we just need to go back to the whole "butt crack" fad, which was just as unappealing as sagging.  Either fad in SL is even less appealing.

Item number 3 has been my hugest issue for me with with mesh clothing.  I don't know about you, but personally, I don't want to look like the rest of SL.  I have taken great pains to individualize my AV over the years.  With mesh clothing,  I have to wear a workaround alpha, alphas created for the specific outfit to push in and cover all my bit to fit Designer Curella 'd Mesh's idea of what I need to look like when I put it on.  It's not about allowing  me to to chose my style, it's about me having to fit d'Mesh's style!

Some will pipe up and says...but wait...Quarl...Quarl is working on deformer and and just wait life will be grand!   Yes, I know that a deformer is being worked on but it's not here yet. When it comes into play, maybe I will be "transformed" and a support of mesh clothing.  I am reserving a "wait and see attitude on that one" 

Anyway, I encourage everyone to try mesh clothing demo and make up their own mind what they think is right for them.

Happy Early Halloween


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