Home > Project Endless Possibilities, Virtual Identity > Project Endless Possibilities (5): Zobeid Zuma

Project Endless Possibilities (5): Zobeid Zuma

(Tonight I bring you another installment – no 5 – in Project Endless Possibilities. You can read more about the project as well as find the previous entries here.)

1. Does your avatar look like or represent your real life self?
No.

2. Do you make significant changes to your avatar often?
Yes.  (Honestly, I spend way too much time fooling with it.)

3. Why have you chosen to have your avatar look like he/she/it does?
I’m not sure I can answer this question easily.  It’s too open-ended.  I have tried to make my av appear friendly and attractive, though.

4. Do you have a signature look?
No.  I have a large set of outfits with widely varying styles.

5. Is it important to you how your avatar looks?
Yes.

6. Do you have some basics that you always wear (certain color of hair, eyes or …)?
I rarely change my shape, skin and eyes.  I consider those the “organic” part of my av.
I should add that I often experiment with alternate avatar forms: furries, robots, fantastic skin colors, etc., but I hardly ever stick with them for long before going back to my basic human av.  I think of these experiments more like costumes or representations of fictional characters (and some of them I specifically designed to illustrate fictional characters), moreso than my “real” avatar.

7. What does it mean to you how other avatars look? Do you avoid talking to some avatars because of their appearance?
I am less likely to talk to avs with a slouchy appearance.  I do sometimes tend to make assumptions about the SL-skills and the intentions of strangers based on what they’ve done with their avs.

8. How has your perspective on your avatar and your thoughts about your appearance changed since you first joined Second Life?

I began with a lot of experimentation — which I still sometimes do, but I don’t think I ever expected my avatar to take on such a well-established visual identity.  By sticking with certain visual elements (the “organic” part of my avatar that I mentioned before), I stay recognizable to my friends, and I find that I like it that way.

9. Has Second Life influenced your Real Life in any way?
Only in a limited way.  I’ve used SL as a tool for designing a couple of RL projects, and I’ve used it to create illustrations for some stories (with my av representing the characters).  Also the discussion events that I go to in SL every week allow me a type of social interaction that would be unlikely where I live in real life.

10. 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?
I don’t take on a different personality when I log into SL, and I never have gotten into role-playing in SL.  When others interact with my avatar, that’s all me coming through — I hope.  However, there are some moments, when I’m tinkering with my avatar and perfecting it, that I have almost parental feelings toward it — as if I were preparing it to someday have a life of its own.  (Wouldn’t it be cool if that were possible?)

(Photos by Zobeid Zuma)

(Thank you Zobeid – and yes, that would be very cool if that was possible!)

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