La Digue du Braek


Furillen has a new sister sim, La Digue du Braek, which can be visited here. In many ways the new sim echoes Furillen – the reference to a real location and the fascinating juxtaposition of natural beauty and heavy industry are common features. But I also hope that the new sim brings something of its own to the grid … we will see.

The sim has been busy with visitors since it opened a few days ago, and has already been reviewed by Kate Bergdorf, River Pearl, and Ziki Questi. There is also – of course – a flickr group, which can be found here.

I will be posting pictures from that group, along with some from Furillen, on an ad hoc basis. I stopped posting regular – daily – pictures simply because I kept falling behind, and because I don’t want to repeat that mistake, I won’t make any promises. But I’d like to keep this blog going as a source of information and discussion about the two sims, and as a way of conveying the wonderful work of Second Life’s many great photographers, and a website such as this seems like an ideal way of doing so.

Here is a taste of the some of the brilliant images of the sim so far …

Crane obsession

Just  hanging



Stay Cool

Finally, just a word about Furillen. It hasn’t disappeared, and there are no plans to make it disappear. The sim still attracts around 150 visitors per day, and is much loved by many people. As long as donations keep coming in at a reasonable rate, I will keep it open.

Do check it out now for the Christmas tree!

Leonard Cohen

And who by fire, who by water,
who in the sunshine, who in the night time,
who by high ordeal, who by common trial,
who in your merry merry month of may,
who by very slow decay,
and who shall I say is calling?
And who in her lonely slip, who by barbiturate,
who in these realms of love, who by something blunt,
and who by avalanche, who by powder,
who for his greed, who for his hunger,
and who shall I say is calling?
And who by brave assent, who by accident,
who in solitude, who in this mirror,
who by his lady’s command, who by his own hand,
who in mortal chains, who in power,
and who shall I say is calling?

Furillen: a brief retrospective


Furillen is a year old. It was ‘opened’ via an announcement in Flickr on 13 October 2015. In truth, I expected very little, and for a week or two that’s exactly what I got. Then, for one reason or another, the sim took off, and it has become a well-respected and much-liked spot on the grid.

The sim has always moved on – most particularly, with the addition of buildings that replicate what exists on the real Furillen, an island on Gotland, northeast Sweden. The basic shape of the sim is still defined by the pier, everything flows back from there – and by the slag heaps on one side, and the lake on the other.

Furillen became quite a social space, and at various times a community of sorts has existed there – and still does. It is, especially, a place for photographers, with over 7500 pictures – many of them quite brilliant – posted in the Flickr stream. I have also staged events over the past year, most memorably those devoted to Bowie, Radiohead and Pink Floyd. There is also the music stream, and this blog, which take time – and money – to maintain.

Running Furillen has been a strange experience, because increasingly the sim has come to feel like ‘public property’, even though in financial terms it is not. I can’t – and won’t – simply transform the sim on a whim, as I might if it was an entirely private space. When the sim closed for a few weeks in the summer, I was inundated with (mostly very kind) requests to re-open it. So the sim sits somewhere awkwardly between a public and private space, and when I ask for donations, it is with this strange hybrid status in mind. It kind of belongs to everyone. Having said this, Furillen has a very personal meaning to me, which I have never discussed publicly – and never will.

Of course, the sim will close eventually, and in many ways I would be very relieved if it did. But when I asked for donations yesterday, the overwhelming response made it clear to me – to everyone – that this moment hasn’t yet arrived.

Furillen is many things to many people, as your many thousands of pictures testify. Thank you, all of you, who have made your pictures at the sim, and said such kind – and sometimes very moving – things about what it means to you.

And thank you Furillen – the real place – for being such an inspiration.