Farewell to Lairig Leacach

Lairig Leacach opened exactly two weeks ago. Having labelled it my ‘holiday sim’ – a sort of Christmas gift to SL’s travellers and photographers – I said that it would be ‘gone in a flash’. True to my word, I will close it later today.

I throughly enjoyed this sim – thanks to everyone who visited and took pictures, left comments in the guestbook, and wrote reviews. I’d also like to thank – again – Harry Cover (aka ‘Impossibleisnotfrench’) for meshing the Lairig bothy so accurately and quickly. (Harry has kindly made something else for me, which will make its appearance inworld sometime in the new year …)

Lairig was partly designed for photographers, and, as ever, I was fascinated and delighted to see what you came up with. Here are some highlights from the 250 or so pictures that have been posted to the sim’s flickr group in the past fourteen days …

blottie dans la forêt

Lairig Leacach

Saor-làithean sona (Happy Holidays)

Lairig Leacach II

A respite appears...

Lairig Leacach ...

Lairig Leacach

wandering_world749

https://www.flickr.com/photos/140105578@N02/49222930342/in/pool-lairig_leacach/

Cabin In The Woods

Lairig Leacach_04

Forest

There are two seasons in Scotland June and Winter

Trees

Cabin In The Woods

winter song...

Deep

A cold winter's day

... et soudain ils apparurent

Oiseau Lune.

Into The Woods

wandering_world751

home

BURDOCK ROOT

First Light

wandering_world753

Snow Day

Day 041

Lairig Leacach

like a  dream...

The Road not Taken

Lairig Leacach [1]

“Snowing is an attempt to make the dirty world look clean”

Blinded By the Light

Craving Serenity

Christmas Greetings

Forest for the Trees.

Time spent amongst trees is never wasted time, Katrina Mayer.

Christmas night.....waiting for you

Nocturnes

Tor of Ironhall - 4

Cold Morning

wandering_world760

Renards joueurs

 

Lairig Leacach

Lairig_Leacach 1

Lairig Leacach is a spectacular location at the foot of Stob Ban in the Central Scottish Highlands. It is the home to a tiny bothy, which is the centrepiece of my ‘vacation’ sim, which opens today for a short time. The landmark is here.

Exif_JPEG_PICTURE

A bothy – also called a byre, or cowshed – is a refuge, a place to rest tired feet or sleep, sheltered from the wind, rain and snow. Although by no means unique to Scotland, bothies are very characteristic of the Highlands. Unlike the ‘refuge’ or ‘refugio’ that is typical of the Alps, bothies are unstaffed, contain no supplies or proper bedding. A bothy is usually just a simple hut – often a converted farm building. It is maintained only through the care and diligence of those who use them, and the goodwill of a network of volunteers making up the Mountain Bothies Association.

Bothies exist mainly for hikers who need shelter – perhaps for the night, or just for an hour or two while a storm blows over. For a long time there was no official list of bothies and their locations, perhaps with the intention to avoid the kinds of guest who are only interested in working their way down such a list in order to ‘bag’ as many as possible. A book containing such a list – The Scottish Bothy Bible – does now exist. Its author was subject to some criticism for breaching this unwritten rule that bothy locations should be discovered only by accident: when in need, or passed on by word of mouth between trusted hikers.

Lairig Leacach is an especially small and primitive example of a Scottish bothy, The location is as stunning is it is remote – it is a ‘good walk from anywhere’, as the guide books say. I was struck by the wildness of the place, and especially the contrast between the big hills surrounding it. The difference in scale is breathtaking …

ll 2

The bothy itself consists of a single room containing an old bunkbed and not much else. And yet, on a freezing cold night, how welcome must such a place be to the walker who is lost or exhausted.

p2749973624-5.jpg

Although Lairig Leacach – the name means the ‘pass of the flagstones’ – is a bleak and desolate place today, like much of the Scottish Highlands it would have once been quite densely forested, indeed there is still quite a large forest close by. In the spirit of those who campaign for the reforestation (or rewilding – see also here) of the Scottish Highlands – and to make the sim a bit more varied and interesting for visitors to wander around – I thought I would try to capture some of this spirit with a sim design that takes quite a few liberties with trees. The outcome, to my eyes and ears at least, is a place that feels much more alluring, almost mystical …

Lairig Leacach A.jpg

Amidst this great landscape stands the bothy itself, and I am very grateful to Harry – whose SL name is Impossibleisnotfrench, you can visit his inworld store here – for generously (and quickly!) meshing an uncannily accurate version of the Lairig Leacach Bothy especially for this sim.

Photo_1_Lairig_Leacach_bothy_with_Stob_Ban_behind_1

The spirit of bothying – to provide shelter for all – captures what Christmas means for me. I hope the sim provides something of a haven for its visitors – and photographers – over the next few days. Enjoy it while it lasts, because it will be gone in a flash …

Happy holidays to all,

Serene Footman 🙏

Composition of Furillen – an exhibition of pictures by nekonuko Nakamori

nekp poster.png

A new exhibition of pictures by nekonuko Nakamori opens at Furillen today. Neko has earned some renown for her superb series of “Wandering World” images, taken during Neko’s meanderings across the grid. All in square format, Neko’s pictures are unmistakable for their deft combination of formal elegance, unusual perspective and beautiful attention to tone and colour. I honestly do not think that I have seen a picture by Neko that I haven’t felt absorbed by.

Despite being one of the grid’s perennial wanderers, Neko has always referred to Furillen as something of a “home”. She has taken countless excellent pictures of the sim in the past, but I must say that I find this new collection of fifteen images taken by her of Furillen since it re-opened incredibly special. For anyone who feels a sense of attachment to this sim – and I surely do – these pictures really will speak to you.

As Neko explains in her note accompanying the show, her own personal affinity with the sim is emotional as well as aesthetic. I think we all missed her pictures when she was absent from the grid, and I am especially pleased for her that Furillen returned when it did to greet her …

With the emergence of realistic mesh objects, there are many SIMs that increase the density and increase the reality. But Furillen has a unique landscape by placing simple objects effectively and minimally. It leads to the minimalist sensibility of Japanese “Wabi-sabi” that I know well.
Minimalism loves the blank. Blank is free. There are no pressing emotions, and it gives us the possibility to express freely what we feel.That’s one reason why Furillen attracts many photographers and artists.

I remember when I first came to Furillen.
Some people called it an empty ruined place, but I loved this grey island at a glance.
And every time I turned the camera, I was impressed that it gave me a new discovery that I had never imagined.
The casual scenery is the best subject here.
This time, I wanted to keep the simple composition of Furillen in the work again, so I made it.

And another big surprise for me is that the people here are very friendly.
Because Furillen is closely related to Flickr, it is common to know who is making what here before saying “Hello”. It helped many of my poor English.
Many people I met at Furillen, I wouldn’t have been here without your support.
Thank you very much!

Furillen closed once a few years ago, during which time I was almost away from SL. The first thing I felt when I returned to SL this summer was that there was no Furillen, but surprisingly I met the island again a few months later. It was an event that made me feel destiny.

I know a lot of great photographers and artists who are more suitable to exhibit in this place than me. But now I hope please enjoy my mischief of fate.

So…do you know another name of Furillen?
It’s a “Love of Life”. meow! =(^.^)=

I thanks for being able to do the show in this loved place.
And i must say thanks a lot to Great Janitor Serene.
nekonuko Nakamori
https://www.flickr.com/photos/nekonuko/