The first installment of guides/tutorials involves some helpful tools that I use for doing photographs/posing in Second Life. These are by no means ALL of the tools that are out there, they are however the ones I use most often. I’ll go through a brief explanation of each one’s capabilities and my personal experience with them. I highly recommend all of them.
This handy little HUD has saved me more times then I can count. It saves your camera angles, so in the event of a crash (which always seems to happen to me at the worst time) you can go right back to that awesome angle you had lined up. For only L$199 it’s well worth it’s price.
It saves angles based on the region you’re in so you can have multiple angles for different regions. Keep in mind that with it being region based the angles will only load in that region. You can easily manage all of the angles from the menu, allowing you to rename them, list all of them, and delete specific angles or entire regions. I highly recommend it to anyone who crashes, and I would guess most of us do, it’s my number one tool of the trade.
Anypose. I’d fancy to guess that we all have something similar to it in one for or another. I’ve always used the Anypose version. It’s L$0 on the marketplace and I personally would pay for it if I had to. The best way to describe it honestly is to quote their listing.
“The AnyPose Expression HUD is a free facial and hand posing HUD. You can adjust your own facial expression and hand animation, or use the puppet feature to adjust another avatar.”
Keep in mind with the hand animation it does not work with mesh hands, only standard avatar hand animations change. I use it most often to keep my eyes from blinking. There are the occasional times where having an expression fits the mood of the image I’m going for as well. For a freebie there’s no reason to not have it in your arsenal.
Animare Pose & Animation System
Any explanation I give of this will probably not cover enough to truly give you an idea of what it does. For the super specifics I would read the listing and make sure you’ve got a clear understanding before you buy it! Animare gives you the ability to tweak already created animations or create your own poses/animations inworld. It’s priced at L$299 which is not bad for what you get out of it. Honestly who hasn’t found a pose that fit what they had in their head and then find that your arm cuts into your body at a certain spot, or your hand is buried in your dress.
I can’t say I’ve had the dress problem myself, but you get the point. This little tool lets you adjust a pose to varying degrees. You can pull that hand out of the dress, or even use the “Rezz Ball” option to make your own pose from scratch! I wouldn’t say this is a beginner’s tool as it can be time consuming and frustrating if you don’t have patience. I’ve used it more than a few times to fix something small, and recently even made my own pose for a post I’ll be doing in the future.
*BOOM* Animation Station
I always used to use loads of separate pose stands, whether it be for different stores or pose sets. Then I saw Portia using this stand. I asked her how it worked and knew I had to buy it right away. It is a bit more pricey at L$750 but it’s copiable and gives you nine categories for ONE stand.
The categories are not predefined so what you see in the picture is my names for my categories (most are borrowed from Portia.) It has not only cleared up my inventory of numerous pose stands but also made it easier for me to flip through all of my poses as I try to find the perfect for the idea I have. It can use static poses as well as animations so all of those walks, furniture animations, or anything really are fair game to use in it.
Where to find it: SL Marketplace
FATE Eye Poser HUD
[Added 4/2/16] This one is a new one and it is already one that I LOVE to the maximum. The FATE eye poser HUD from the creative mind of Damien Fate is amazing. It allows you to position both of your eyes, or your left and right eyes independently. I love being able to use it to make those minor adjustments to get it just right.
It was recently updated to allow you to not only control your own eyes, but others as well. You of course have to get their permission to animate their avatar, but once you do you can position their eyes yourself so you can get that perfect shot instead of having eyes all over the place. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to try and catch my kids eyes not going crossed or up and down.
FATE Hand Poser HUD
[Added 4/1/18] This one is a new one and it is already one that I LOVE to the maximum. The FATE Hand poser HUD from the creative mind of Damien Fate is amazing. It allows you to position both of your hands, or all of your fingers independently. I love being able to use it to make those minor adjustments to get it just right.
It allows you to not only control your own hands, but others as well. You of course have to get their permission to animate their avatar, but once you do you can position their hands/fingers yourself so you can get that perfect shot. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to try rethink a shot because of how a hand or finger clipped. With this amazing tool that is no longer a problem!
From SL Marketplace: “This HUD allows you to pose yourself, or a model, even in no-build areas, with no-transfer poses! Each copy you make of the HUD can contain 25 categories of poses, each with nearly unlimited poses (limited only by SL limits on prim inventory).”
I do own this tool and it is extremely handy for the times when you want to take a picture somewhere that you cannot rez. I can’t even count the amount of times I’ve been on a sim and had an idea come to mind but find that it’s a place doesn’t allow rezzing. Now I do understand why sim owners disallow it. With griefers and people leaving things around it would be incredibly difficult to avoid issues.
PoseAnywhere allows you to organize your poses as well. You can have up to 25 categories with tons of poses in each category and if you need more then that you can just have another copy of the HUD for even more poses! It gives you the ability to pose not only yourself but a model as well. You can’t pose yourself and a model at the same time though. Not really a problem for me as I’m usually shooting myself.
Please keep in mind that This HUD does not support No Copy poses.
These are handy mostly for mesh hand/feet attachments that end up looking broken in certain poses. They lock the ankle or wrist position straight to keep it from having an odd bend in it. There is one from kitty wants milk that is L$95 and includes HUD fixes for ankles, wrists, eye, head/neck, and a combo one that has all of them in one HUD. A very handy tool if I do say so myself. If you’re only looking for an ankle lock, Strawberry Singh has one available for L$1 that locks your ankles only. Thanks as well to Reddit user Silenced0racle for reminding me that you can get a free ankle lock at Slink above the feet vendors.
Where to find kitty wants milk: SL Marketplace
Where to find Strawberry’s Ankle Lock: SL Marketplace
Where to find Slink’s Ankle Lock: Inworld
If anyone has any other recommendations for helpful tools please leave a comment and I’ll be sure to check it out and get it added to the list!