This Week & Dance Resources Index

Upcoming Events:
full calendar:  https://harleyquinadventure.com/2017/03/31/calendar/

Thurs Feb 8th – 6 pm slt show
Noir Neverland

Fri Feb 16th – 6 pm slt show
Elysium Cabaret

Fri Feb 23rd – 6 pm slt show
Elysium Cabaret – Crowd Dance

Sat Feb 24th – 1pm slt show
Elysium Cabaret Matinee

Sundays –  5 pm slt
Winds of the Sahara Cabaret Show DJ


An easy reference to dance resource pages

As a seasoned and passionate dancer in SL, I freely share and support others in their own dance journeys.  My beliefs:  question everything, learn from everything, take from it what you will and do it your own way.  Have many teachers, no one is a master, no one knows “THE WAY”.  I teach based on what I know – my own foundation, what I have learned, my own ways – but they are not the only ways.  Enjoy the ride, speak from the soul and create art with your dance.  We are all always learning, always growing.  Release the music from within.  Your way.  ~ Eva  

Audacity – Music Player and Editing Program
Blogging Ideas – Using a Private Blog for Keeping Creative Ideas and Inspiration
Camera and Video Tips & Tricks
Editing Music – Audacity Video Tutorial
Lighting Tutorial
Moving Objects with Choreography Design System
Particle Power to the People
Performance Director – Starting People Backstage
Smooth Dancer Tip for Choreography
Tools Tips & Tricks
Harleyquin Workshops
Harleyquin Workshop Descriptions
Tips and Tricks – Stage Manager

New Dancer Resource:

Sirens Call to Dance – a beginning
The Official Book of Dance Rules
Don’t Rush into Using All the Tools! Build a Strong Foundation
Definition Time!
The Story of a Dance HUD, and starting with animations
The Magical World of Animations and Choreography – NEW!
Choosing Music
Freestyle!  Learn your animations & have fun – NEW!
Creating Your First Dance

Creating a Dance:

Dance Knowledge – a Sharing
Creating Choreography – My Flow
New Dancers Resource

Favorites Stores and Tools:

Animation Stores
Particles Stores
Boom Animation Organizer
Camera View Save/Setup HUD – 0L

Reblogged:

TROFF – a music tool for choreography, reblogged from SLNightMagic

Misc. Tips:

Sticky note holder and notes in sequences

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Be a Fruit Loop in a World of Cheerios…

I’m a fruit loop…and I like being a fruit loop.


(Yep that’s me)

Blessed are the weird people:
poets, misfits, writers
mystics, painters, troubadours
for they teach us to see the world through different eyes.” ~ Jacob Nordby

BUT

it doesn’t mean that sometimes I don’t question myself, let those doubts sink in.

“Am I good enough?  Am I too weird?  Do they not like what I do?  Are they better than me?  Would someone else be better than me?  Who am I to do this?  …”

Over time, I’ve had many “gut check” moments…when I’ve lost my focus, lost my inspiration.  I was completely shocked the other day when someone commented they could see it in the dances I created, the music choices I’ve made.  She could see how the feelings inside reflected in my creative choices, and how as the feelings changed those choices did too.  Sometimes my creativity slows to a near crawl…either in a lack of ideas or a lack of desire.

These gut check moments come for different reasons – sometimes a respite is needed, stop the never ending treadmill we may have jumped on.  Sometimes it’s the calm as energy builds up for a new breakthrough.  Sometimes it’s caused by internal transition or DOUBT.  All of those have a purpose.  The key is getting to the other side.  Get back on the horse…or a bigger horse…or maybe a speckled horse instead of a brown one.  IT’S ALWAYS YOUR CHOICE WHAT HORSE TO RIDE.  (Or cowboy…but that’s a whole different post.)

Doubt can be a catalyst.  You can face your fears and overcome them or you can do this:

ok…who brought the tissues?

One thought just shouts out in my mind…one that is so important to me, and almost a mantra of sorts now.

They aren’t better, just different.

I am on a constant crusade to learn new things, to improve, to be more outgoing.  Some people may “get me”, some won’t.  Some people may like what I do, the energy I bring, the way I do things, some won’t.

You know what?  That’s OK!

There are always other opportunities.  Instead of doubting, do your own self check – do you feel you’re doing a good job?  If yes, then keep doing it!  If you’re just not happy, move on!  Try different venues, be creative.  I may never dance for Monarch’s or be a “top” DJ, but I can love doing what I do, keep evolving, and embrace whatever comes in an unknown future.

Something else I’ve realized:  By hanging onto a situation that doesn’t work anymore, you are hurting not only yourself but the other party too!  You are holding yourself back from what may be an amazing opportunity waiting out there, and you are holding them back from finding someone who fills their needs and culture better.

Change is scary, change can really suck, but change can also bring about amazing new things.  Trust in yourself, do your best, keep growing, and do those internal self checks once in a while.  Believe in yourself, and know it’s ok to be different.

~ Eva “fruit loop” Harley

 

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*THIS* is what happens while you create a dance!

OK, I stumbled on this and honestly….this is scary accurate for what a choreographer goes through when creating a dance.  Get it?  Scary?  Hahahahahaha!  I just amuse myself…

Oh sure…it’s simple they said…just buy some animations they said….a set?  just need a box with some moving pictures on it they said…..moving?  who needs to move?  pfft…they said.

Umm….yah.

Know what else?  To me – it’s worth it, and as I go through the creative process I decide IF I need all the “stuff”.  After a song just pounds away in my head DEMANDING to be created, I brainstorm every thought, feeling, idea, marketplace prop I think of and find.

Know what?  A lot ends up on the cutting room floor.

and that’s OK.

We’re creating a dance, not a movie, but in a way aren’t they a bit the same?  We want to tell a story, we want to evoke an emotion, to share something of ourselves.  True – we’re not going to make a billion dollars but we also (hopefully) don’t have a studio breathing down our neck telling us how we have to do something either.

For me, a lot of the choices and considerations in that diagram above are spot on!  Except maybe the party for the premiere bit…I need to work on that…

So…do you follow a process when creating a dance?  Do you have a flow, make conscious choices, or kinda just toss it all together and see what comes out?  Is either way better?  Hmmm…

–> off to make a horror movie

~ Eva

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Dance in SL – Putting Together the Pieces

As I look over my blog, I see all the different pieces – the topics, the words, the tips and the tricks.  I realize that having all of these in different places can make it difficult…there’s no flow for someone new to dance.  Sadly, this is the way my brain operates sometimes – jumping from one place to another.  This is my attempt to bring it all together in one cohesive place.  It will be a work in process for quite a while, but it will help refresh my mind and inspire, and hopefully others may gain just a bit from it.

A Beginning and Flow for the New Dancer

The most important thing I can share for a new dancer in SL is passion.  Dance provides the opportunity to study a piece of music, to tell a story through dance, choreograph, build sets, costume, create textures.  It can even go on to creating objects, scripting, and creating your own costumes.  There really is such a variety in expressing yourself creatively, and you get to choose your own style, your methods, your focus.

– Visit Shows

Go to many venues, see what you like, what you don’t.  Get a feel for performances in SL, explore and enjoy.

Read more here:  The Sirens Call – a beginning for the new dancer

– Listen to the Music

At its core, there are really just two requirements to dance.  Music and movement.  Spend a little time listening to different pieces, different styles of music.  Feel the emotions, feel the flow, which ones speak to you?  Close your eyes and let them flow through you.  Can you see them in your head?  There is no rush, no guidelines at this time.  Once you begin to learn dance in SL, you will never listen to or feel music the same way again.

Read more here:  “Official” Book of Dance Rules

– Building Tools

Dance in SL is unlike RL.  In RL, we use our bodies to move, to express the music.  In SL, we must use various tools to accomplish this.

In this step, we focus what types of tools there are…THEN watch dance performances again at different venues, see how they are used by others.  Each choreographer creates in their own way, using the tools they prefer in whatever way they choose.

There is a significant difference in knowing the technical aspect of using a tool, and WHY.  One of my favorite quotes is, the set is your canvas, the dancers your paint.  The tools you use are your paintbrushes.

Read more here:  Dance Tools – types and options
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 CHECKPOINT

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Dance Tools – Types and Options

There are a myriad of tools available in SL that can be used to create a dance.  Here, my focus is to give a brief overview of each type and information about the tools I’m aware of.  As I myself expand my knowledge, this page too will expand.

Types of Tools:

Animation HUDS
Movers/Movement Systems
Set Rezzers
Particles/Particle HUDS
Costume Tools
Fade Systems
Emoters
Performance Coordination Systems

Animation HUD– A type of HUD that is worn on your screen which contains a number of animations.  An animation is a special type of item in Second Life, that when played will move various parts of the avatar.  Animation HUDs generally display the names of animations loaded in the HUD, and allow you to “play” them when you press the button.  When an animation is played, you will perform the selected animation – such as a bow or dance.  Some animation HUDs also allow you to invite others to the HUD and control their animations at well.  They may also be able to play a sequence of animations and/or record a sequence of animations.  Example:  waltz, pose, then bow is a sequence.

Movement System – A movement system is basically a tool that moves dancers from one set of coordinates to another.  For example, your dancers start on the stage floor, and you want them to rise 2 meters so they are flying, or move them to the left and to the right.  A mover system will allow you to do this.  There are several mover systems.  I recommend exploring.  You may find that some tools work better in certain situations than others.  A mover system is generally comprised of two things:  a HUD or some type of master control, and movers or dance balls which your dancers sit/stand on.  By moving the dance ball or mover your dancer stands on, it also moves your dancer.

Set Rezzers – A set rezzer is a special object in which you “pack” your set.  You may then bring this rezzer to different dance venues, build platforms, or anywhere that you can rez objects.  Once you activate the rezzer, it will “rebuild” your set, allowing you to bring it almost anywhere or to save it compactly for later.  When finished, you activate the “de-rez” or “clear” option, and your set is removed but still in the rez box. This is very similar to rezzers used when you buy most houses from Market Place.

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New Beginnings – “New Year’s Resolutions Suck”

So…what’s coming this year:

  • new classroom area slowly taking shape
  • re-look at the workshops, how I teach, making them more fun, focused, and productive
  • Harleyquin dance troupe – new things on the horizon!
  • unleashing creativity 🙂

The new year, a time for fresh starts, new resolutions, the world open at your feet and limited only by your imagination.

That’s not true though.  It’s limited by your determination and discipline.  You may have the most amazing thoughts, ideas, and imagination in the world, but without determination – what will become of it?

We all know the success rate (or the non-success rate) of New Year’s resolutions.

I absolutely loved reading this blog entry on nerdfitness.com (and yeah, that’s where this blog title came from…)

https://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/new-years-resolutions-suck-heres-what-to-do-instead/

Highlights:

Motivation and inspiration can certainly help to get started, but without understanding how our crazy, irrational brains work, we’re doomed to another year of “oh yeah, I forgot I said I was going to do that.” SUCK!

Motivation can get you started, and that’s great! I don’t care what gets you started or how you got here, just that you’re here. Remember, Rule #1 of the Rebellion is “We don’t care where you came from, only where you’re going.” But motivation wanes, and inspiration fades quickly when life kicks in.

If you are going to succeed this year, there are three truths that you NEED to learn immediately before we move onto anything else:

  • We are creatures of habit.
  • We are products of our environment.
  • We are the average of the people we associate most with.

Step 1: Screw Motivation!

Step 2: Build the Habit

Step 3: Hack Your Batcave

Step 4: Surround Yourself with Allies

It’s a fun read with lots of great info.


Ha.  Sounds like I know what I’m doing right?  <coughs>

I love writing here on this blog, it motivates me..and…it helps things stick in my brain.  (That’s something after two minor/moderate brain injuries.)  When I was young, I thought I’d have everything figured out by the time I reached this age.  Well…not so much.  Still working on that part.

Changing the title above, I remembered that I usually create my dances when I’m motivated…then often rush to meet a deadline.  Then I remembered a DragonCon session I went to with female writers.   I remember something Laurell K. Hamilton said:

The most important thing for a writer to do is write.  She writes every single day, knows she’s a morning writer and every morning goes to her desk, coffee in hand, and writes.  She focused on the number of pages she wanted to write.  Sometimes she wrote more, but every day she wrote some.

I apply this to all creative endeavors.  Sure, I highly doubt any of us will be able to make a living off SL dance performances, but when it comes to art I believe it is the passion and enjoyment that always come first, that are always communicated through our creations whether it’s a book, a sculpture, or a dance.  Whatever tools we use to convey our creativity.

I also found this quote on her website which I really liked:

“One of your jobs as an artist is to figure out how you work best, what your muse needs to feel comfortable and happy to play with you. I think I broke nearly every part of my writing process on this book, because I kept saying, that’s silly, I know how to write a book, I don’t need to do that anymore. Yeah, maybe needing an entire wall of my office so I can storyboard the book with sticky notes is silly, but it works for me and has worked for me for over twenty years, but for this book I took down my sticky notes and tried to do it without them. Never again, because it’s part of my process. It helps me think, helps me organize and plot. It works for me, and if it works for me as a writer I need to honor that and use it.” ~ Laurell K. Hamilton

So….instead of creating resolutions, I’m going to try this approach:

Step 1: Screw Motivation!
Step 2: Build the Habit
Step 3: Hack Your Batcave
Step 4: Surround Yourself with Allies

I’m going to add one more:

So, the word resolution just automatically has that connotation of being something no one sticks to.  Target instantly evokes thoughts of hit or miss, so that won’t work, and destinations just seemed to be focused on the arrival, not the journey so that one was nixed too.

Missions.  Thesaurus.com said that word is comparable to goals, so that’s what it’s going to be.

Step 0.5:  Define Personal Missions  
Step 1: Screw Motivation!
Step 2: Build the Habit
Step 3: Hack Your Batcave
Step 4: Surround Yourself with Allies

Mission purpose requirement:

  • contribute to living a happy, healthy, and confident life
  • expand horizons
  • overcome fears to achieve
  • reduce stress, increase enjoyment

Let’s see where this goes, eh?

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Motivation – Fear and lima beans

Sometimes we need a reminder of how special we are, an amazing speaker or a piece of music to rekindle us, to feed us, to remind us of the strength we all have inside, and to celebrate the uniqueness within, our imperfect natures that make us who we are.

I post these as a reminder to myself, and also that they may touch someone else’s life as they do mine.

~ namaste

Sometimes, the silent support of a friend, a heartfelt “you did a great job”, or a very simple “thank you” keep us going, keep us believing.

I know.

As one who is in the process of tearing down the protective wall I built up, who so many times just wanted to give up the struggle, who gave up believing, who depended on others to feel happy about myself, who made excuses and withdrew from the world, all worlds over the years, who let her fears overwhelm her from embracing the strength inside, who let the words of others tear her down…

I focus now on strength, belief, and slowly work on overcoming fears.  Fear of change, fear of not being good enough, fear of failing.  I’m still afraid of lima beans, mind you, still have nightmares about eating those squishy things when I was a child.  Nope, not gonna change that one.  Rock climbing too, I detest rock climbing and personally can’t figure that one out although I applaud all those who love it.  Now I would jump out of a perfectly good airplane, so you’ve got me on that…

Les Brown is of my favorite speakers.  Perhaps his message will touch you as it does me, or perhaps it will open you to what lies under the surface of others.

I like this quote:  “You are not required to set yourself on fire to keep others warm.”

One thing I was reminded of recently, especially in the world of SL, is this:

We may never know the struggles that others are facing, behind the words, behind the smiles.  I am reminded to be patient, to be kind, to be considerate and open-minded.  Most of all, I hope that others know and feel that someone believes in them, cares for them.

I am so very grateful for the people in my life, and that they accept me for who I am, warts and all.

A very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and bright blessings to you.

 

 

 

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Jump Out of the Plane

I love to watch Ted videos, the amazing variety of stories, of ideas, and of people – many like you and me with something to share.

Sometimes one clicks, just makes me say “WOWWW”…my mind jumping out of my chair and all my little electrons and neutrons doing that “woot, woot, woot” fist pump thing.

I hope some of you are still out there, or you’ll perhaps find this when you need it, and maybe someone else will do the wave with me.  If not, that’s ok too.  Writing is cathartic in so many ways.  When I was young, I thought I’d know it all by now, have everything figured out.  The older I grow, the less I feel I do.  That’s not a bad thing.  I have a good amount of lifetime to look back on, to realize why I do the things I do, why I react the way that I do, why I draw certain situations around me…and I can learn, evolve.  Nothing should ever stay the same.

Today’s Ted video is now one of my favorite.  Luvvie Ajayi is an amazing speaker, funny, and right to the point.  Staying in our comfort zone holds us back.  Sure, we’ve all heard that a million times..but to embrace it, to believe it, to change it is so much harder than simply hearing the words once, twice, a hundred times.  Nearly every day I realize that the brain will only accept what it’s ready to accept.  Those “ohhhhh…now I understand” moments.  Hearing it from others just really doesn’t do it.  It’s that day our own mind comprehends it, the sky parts, the angels sing, and we finally see.

eye sees

 

 

 

 

 

For me, I can equate this to RL relationships, work, friendships, and even dance in SL.  Having a set routine is an amazing way to get things done, but when does a routine transform into a comfort zone that we can’t break out of?  Are we afraid of being the first domino to try something new, to go against the norm, to stand up for what we believe in.  Ms. Ajayi says this:  “When it’s time to say these hard things, I ask myself three things. One: Did you mean it? Two: Can you defend it? Three: Did you say it with love? If the answer is yes to all three, I say it and let the chips fall.”

How often do I not stand up for myself because of fear?  How often do I hold myself back because of fear?  Fear of trying something new, fear of failing, fear of being disliked, fear of the opinion of others.

I think sometimes in the world of SL, it can be even worse in some ways than RL.  People are quick to judge, quick to snap, quick to say harsh words and gossip.  I know I too have been guilty of this.  I also think SL can also be an amazing world of supportive people, who have seen me struggle and given me hope, and encouraging words, that everything will be alright, that things will pass, that there is something to learn from the pain.  I hope that I have done the same for others.

I’ve been quiet lately, because I’ve slowly been breaking out of my comfort zone, in tiny little pieces, looking deep inside myself.  It creates some chaos doing this, but time and time again I see how much brighter the world is, how much happier it can be by pulling myself out of my comfort zone, not running back behind my “wall of safety”, and falling into the line of dominos, somewhere at the end where no one will notice me.  Within my life, I can BE the domino, the one that starts the chain, with the strength and the courage to do what I believe in, to stand up for myself and others when need be, and express myself in new ways.

Perhaps her words will move you, too.  As always, this is your life, and your freedom to make choices.  My mantra:  “Question Everything”.  My theme song: “Try Everything“.

Never apologize for who you are or what you believe in.  Fear will always be there, leading you to question and doubt.  Never let fear stop you from doing what’s right for you.  I’d rather be a domino conga line of one, than to sacrifice myself and my beliefs.
~ Eva

“But I realize comfort is overrated. Because being quiet is comfortable. Keeping things the way they’ve been is comfortable. And all comfort has done is maintain the status quo. So we’ve got to get comfortable with being uncomfortable by speaking these hard truths when they’re necessary.” ~ Luvvie Ajayi

 

 

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