Home > Project Endless Possibilities, Virtual Identity > Project Endless Possibilities (3): Tess Delwood

Project Endless Possibilities (3): Tess Delwood

(This is the third post in Project Endless Possibilities. You can read more about the project as well as find the previous entries here.)

  • Does your avatar look like or represent your real life self?

Not really.

  • Do you make significant changes to your avatar often?

Never. I have some furry avatars, but never use them any more. Even as a furry I tried to keep some things consistent, short hair, glasses, as similar a body type as possible.

  • Why have you chosen to have your avatar look like he/she/it does?

It’s how I wished I looked, in a way. Perhaps also I’m attracted to the look of my avatar.

  • Do you have a signature look?

I want to appear conservative in dress, generally, but also with hints of sexuality. Short hair, glasses, a long dress perhaps, but nice makeup. Lots of pants, but not often jeans. When I pole-dance for tips, I try to mix the two. I’ve been told several times people enjoy the idea of a teacher or librarian dancing and stripping.

  • Is it important to you how your avatar looks?

I wanted an avatar that was not overly attractive and had flaws. In hindsight, I don’t think I have the flaws I thought I created. I’m visually appealing to my wife in SL, so for that I’m extremely happy with the way I look.

  • Do you have some basics that you always wear (certain color of hair, eyes or …)?

I don’t change things that would be impossible in RL. I could see, botox or breast implants, though those things aren’t my style. In other ways I don’t change, eyes, height. I wear glasses like I do in RL, not on in bed or a bath tub, that sort of thing, but otherwise on. My hair is always short, though sometimes “dyed” or a different style. I always wear a wedding ring now. And soon I hope to always wear a collar. I have only one skin I wear, though many kinds of makeup.

  • What does it mean to you how other avatars look? Do you avoid talking to some avatars because of their appearance?

With the availability of many free things like skin, hair and clothing, even if they aren’t high-quality, someone can look good with just a bit of effort. To me this means appearance is a choice. If someone looks like a newb, they either are or don’t care or do it on purpose for whatever reason. Which is fine and their choice. If someone appears to be a furry, an animal, or even some object, it’s a neat way of expression. The same can be said for someone appearing unattractive. I would only avoid talking to someone if their appearance was offensive in some way (anti-gay slogan, Swastika, something like that).

(Edit: Tess was kind enough to answer the additional questions, I’ve added to the project – thanks Tess!)

  • How has your perspective on your avatar and your thoughts about your appearance changed since you first joined Second Life?
I had been in SL before, long ago, so I wasn’t naive in creating my appearance. But looking back.. I wanted to start with an appearance I didn’t change, and I wanted to be more plain. I didn’t want some idealized look. Either two things have happened… I’ve grown very used to my appearance or I didn’t achieve the idea that I’m plain. Perhaps a bit of both.
  • Has Second Life influenced your Real Life in any way?
Yes. For as much as I hold SL as a fantasy, I know I have real feelings for someone. I do know there’s a real person behind the avatar. We may only share SL but there’s still a real connection. Perhaps that’s why the avatar is both important (how I visualize) and unimportant (it’s just pixels, not the person and personality).
  • How do you view your avatar? Is it just a tool to be able to navigate SL, is it an aspect of your persona, a virtual representation of you or maybe your best friend
It’s a virtual me and a fantasy both. Clearly I’m not “Tess”. But Tess has my personality, my likes, dislikes, even sexuality.

(Photo by Tess Delwood)

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