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Trying to understand skins and clothing


madelin423
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Been a member less than twenty four hours, so bare with me please. I chose the avatar Sara when I joined.
It was one of those first few that they show you.  Went and bought a new skin. (almost 2000l) and some clothes.
The skins don't show up when I try to wear it and neither do the clothes. Reading on the forum, I figured out that
what I have is a new mesh avatar.  I hope that is correct.  And my new skin and the clothes are for the standard
avatar. I hope that is correct.  But from there everything gets hazy.  Let's see if I have the next part right.  I then switch
avatars to a standard avatar.  How do I tell what is a standard avatar?  Okay, I get the standard avatar on the screen.
Now I want to wear the new skin and I want to wear the new clothes I bought.  Do I just right click on the skin and say wear?
Or do I have to remove the skin and the clothes of the standar avatar first? Same question about switching the clothes?
I was sent to some island to find answers, but I was lost after wandering around and could find any help.  Thanks.

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You are on the right track and it IS confusing I am sure. It was confusing long ago when I joined and it is much more complex now.

"Normally" you find a shape that feel like you or you make one yourself and then find a skin to fit that. Since you already purchased a skin no that skins look very different on different shapes and indeed may not fit at all. Some skins come WITH shapes and some skin makers make shapes to go with their skins.

So my general advice it to try a variety of shapes, both those that are in your inventory as default avatars and others. There are MANY free shapes on the Marketplace. Keep trying on shapes until you find one that feels "like you" and also fits the skin (I find the nose is often the trickiest part and if it doesn't fit there are folds in the skin which are NOT good looking).  Eventually you will find a good match.

 

Good luck and have fun.

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First things first. The new players get a crappy mesh avatar. You won't be able to wear the skin you just got with that and the clothing is questionable. Go into your current outfit tag and take off everything or go to the library and wear any of the classic avatars...drag the folder onto your avi. That will get rid of all the mesh,, shape and alphas you started with. Now...you can wear the pretty new shape, skin and clothes you just bought. Remember to use add, not wear, though.

Good Luck.

 

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Just one thing more, always try a demo before you buy if there is a demo. On the marketplace, you can see the text "Get the demo version" under your buy options. In the stores, inspect the vendor by hoovering your mouse over it, test various parts buy clicking them. Remember, you can always close a "buy" window without buying anything. Sometimes the big ad is the demo and the items you buy is small boxes under. Hairstyles is often sold this way, you click the big vendor for a demo, try the hair on, and then buy "browns" or another pack of your choice.

Items that come with demos is skins, shapes, hairs, and mesh (not system) clothing. If you can't find a demo for these items, stop and think. How much does it cost, can I afford to buy it if I don't like how it looks on me? For items that normally is expensive like skins, no demo is a bad sign. Is the skin stolen? Or will the box you buy be empty?

Marketing is important to sell. Naturally, merchants in SL use good quality graphic cards that can run SL at ultra. It is also common to use a flattering light, a  windlight setting for modeling. Think of it as RL studio lights compared to the harsh light on a parkingplace at noon.  Totally unedited SL images can look very different depending on computer specs and how well versed you are in using windlight and posing.

Then there is the possibility of using a touch of photoshopping to make the ad look irresistible.:matte-motes-angry: So demo before you buy unless it is a free gift. 

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At times like this I wonder if it wouldn't be easier to call a phone number and have someone come out to your house, hover over your shoulder and show you this stuff.

This is all just my opinion, but I think you should take all of the information offered on the official "Knowledge Base" with a massively huge grain of salt.  It's my firm belief that Linden Lab couldn't write a proper, square-one, common sense FAQ or help article on how to operate a toaster.  Take Controlling your avatar's appearance page for instance; it's most likely the first page a totally new user might click on looking for information on how to change their appearance, and as you can see it's painfully, criminally brief, with half of the page dedicated to 'avatar physics'.  Avatar physics is one of the absolute LAST things a new user would need any information about when they're just starting out and everything is frustratingly convoluted and confusing.

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Welcome to SL :)

It takes a little while to learn your way around here. I think most all of us started just like you, though probably easier as we didnt have quite as much to learn when we got here. I never  had to try and decide about mesh avatars then, just picked one of the standard ones and moves on from there. IMO I think using a non mesh avatar is a nice option. If you go with mesh it limits what you can do customizing wise. You purchased a expensive skin. In my opinion there are some really nice skins are available for less than what you paid, but its always a matter of personal choice. This is what I can offer you based on my many bumblings here.

In using a non mesh avatar, you are basically getting a shape. You can purchased the skin elsewhere. If you remove all the clothes you will notice "white" looking "underwear:" shapes on the body. Once you add the skin those will disappear and you will see the actual skin. My personal favorite is LAQ, but again many, many skin options. You can purchase clothing from many stores or the marketplace. I love to roam different stores in SL and just purchase things like I would in a regular mall. You can also purchase different shapes if you don't like what you have to start with.

If you are not using a mesh shape, you should be able to customize it. You can select "edit shape" and you will be presented with sliders to adjust everything from height and weight to facial features etc. This only applies to the shapes provided from SL and some "modify" shapes sold at various merchants. If a shape is "no mod" you can not adjust it. If a shape is mesh you can't adjust it.

You can add mesh body parts to a shape. Many people use mesh bare feet or hands, as they look more realistic.

You will want to look for an AO (animation over rider) This will effect the way you avatar walks, stands and makes many gestures. Some are free, some costly. I like Tutys myself, fairly cheap and easy to use and they provide many options. Once again, its comes down to your preference.

You can rez items you buy in many "sandboxes" Search for them and most will provide a free area to rez things and try them on.

So much more, but hopefully that will help. Feel free to IM me in world if I am on and I will be more than happy to try to help you get settled in and show you some nice places here.

And again welcome. Its wonderful to see new people here. SL is a great place and a lot of fun. I hope you enjoy your stay!

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