So, this will be a little different.Â I thought it might be both fun and challenging to feature some skins that might not be designs I would choose for myself, at least for everday wear, yet are still interesting and well made.Â This is more of a feature (or collection of features)Â than a formal review, so I won’t be going into quite as much detail as I usually try to do when I actually review a skin.Â But I will tell you what I think and hopefully show you enough in pictures that you can decide if you want to drop by any shops to try on some demos.Â Which of course you should alway do before buying a skin, no matter how great you may think it looks in the ads or on anyone else, including me.Â But I hardly need mention that for your benefit, experienced and discerning shopper that you are.Â
My first somewhat unlikely suspect is the new “Generation” skin by Kaejo DaSilva.Â I make the “somewhat” disclaimer because, of the skins featured here, this skin is most like others that I doÂ wear regularly.Â This isn’t a skinny guy’s skin, although I think it works just fine for slimmer shapes; there’s some nice definition, and although the musculature isn’t heavily built it’s nicely toned.Â Â I wouldn’t mind having this body in RL.Â To me this skin looks less “airbrushed” than some other skins–if you look closely, you’ll spot some noticeable freckles and moles.Â Overall the skin is more realistic, slight imperfections and all, than it is idealized or stylized.
One of the first things I look for in a skin I’m trying on for the first time is whether the face is recgonizably “Ryan” or if I now look like my own cousin, distant or otherwise.Â Of course a designer can and should bring his or her own unique style to the facial artwork, but if it’s a skin I hope to wear regularly, I still like to look like me.Â I’m not weighing that too heavily here, as the whole idea here is that these are skins I might not choose for myself, but subjectively I do think the underlying essence of Ryan is clearly visible.
“Generation” is available in Pale, Light, Tan, Brown, DarkÂ and Black skin tones, and a variety of different facial hair options.Â The skins are priced at L$1000 for singles and L$3000 for packs;Â you can try on a demoÂ forÂ L$1.Â Free Renegade-branded “tightie whitie” briefs are included, although I’m not modeling them here.Â Available at Renegade (Berard 85, 160, 309).Â When I was there, the skins were down in the sewer, below street level.
Here you see another relatively new skin, “Conor” by Disembodied Hand.Â Now, I have to admit that this one kinda grew on me.Â It’s quite different, although perhaps not fundamentally so, from Dis’ earlier skins.Â The faceÂ is strong and stylized, with highlighting and shading that look smooth, almost as if carved from marble–no pores, freckles, moles or other blemishes, however slight.Â Although this may strike some as less realistic, I think it’s the singleÂ most interesting thing about this skin.Â Although it may not work for everyone, it’s clearly intentional and consistent with Dis’ all hand-drawn design approach.
The torso is trim and lightly defined, with toned but not bulky abs and a symmetrical sprinkling of chest hair.Â There’s a noticeable dusting of hair on the forearms as well.
“Conor” comes in four skin tones (Light is shown here), and seven different facial hair options, including someÂ unusual trims, are available.Â Last time I checked these were stillÂ on sale–L$300 for singles, L$1500 for packs.Â At Defectiva (bel Drift 143, 231, 501).
Of his skin called “OrphÃ©e: The Long Journey,”Â designer Negko Devinna says, “The OrphÃ©e skin is the result of months of work.Â I started by just trying to design a face tattoo and then it became a body tattoo, and then, well, it turned into what people in SL call a skin.Â The ‘Long Journey’ is the first chapter of a story I will write thanks to different product releases.”Â Taking the story of OrpheusÂ as inspiration for a line of skins is an intriguing design approach.Â Even the names of the various facial hairÂ and body hairÂ options–including Day 1, Day 7, Day 17–suggest the passage of time and indeed the “long journey” of the inspiring figure.
“OrphÃ©e” is priced at L$888 and comes as a set of ten skins, each with a different facial hair or body hair option, as described above.Â A L$1 demo pack is available in the shop.Â I’m wearing my own shape here, but the set includes a suggested shapeÂ inÂ naked and clothed variations (the differences I noticed are subtle ones in the “package”).Â This shape is far bulkier than my own, and not one I would choose to wear, but it’s fascinating to see this suggestion of how the designer envisions the “character” of this skin.
Also by Negko Devinna is this skin, called “CrÃ©on: Antigone’s Choice.”Â Negko again:Â “The CrÃ©on skin is a spin-off from the OrphÃ©e skin.Â I wanted to experiment [with] an ‘older male’ skin by adding some gray/white facial hairs.Â It is also a release of a darker skin tone.Â [The] shape and skin [together] give a real ‘dark’ result. Â The avatar looks like someone cursed, someone who carries a heavy burden.Â The name of CrÃ©onÂ came naturally to my mind.Â This king who preferred to bury his daughter because she had not respected his will, I see him like this.”
Eight different facial hair optionsÂ are included, the names sugesting significant elements of a dramatic life:Â Â Crowning, Death, Funerals, Guilt, Insane, Meditation, Sleepless, and Worried.Â “CrÃ©on” includes a suggested shape (naked and clothed versions), shown at left, plus a bald hair base for the eyebrow shape.Â HereÂ I’m wearing the skin with my own shape, for reference.
These are both distinctive skins withÂ noble features, strong definition andÂ classically statuesque musculature.Â Although it would not be period-appropriate to use the terms “six-pack” or “washboard abs,” the body artwork is athletically built, to say the least.Â I can easily imagine either competing most successfully in the Olympic games or other test of athletic prowess.
“CrÃ©on” is priced at L$666 and comes as a set ofÂ eight skins, each with a different facial hairÂ design.Â You can buy a demo pack for L$1.Â Both of Negko’s skin creations are available at Negko Design at Midnight Lotus (Buffalo Run 159, 116, 62).