In the late hours of the night, visit the Japanese Hanami Festival and dream… Traveler behold As Midnight courts the Moon and Cherry blossoms dance.
Mami Jewell of Azul spoke with Marmurek about why she began sponsoring Fantasy Faire, hints about the formal fantasy she's bringing to the faire this year, and what she looks forward to in this year's faire.
YoZakura is a gorgeous Japanese style sim that celebrates the Cherry Blossoms. Little touches of the sublime are around every corner, tucked in and around the old fashioned buildings that house the many stores. I espeacially love the landscapes built in between these buildings - a water wheel above a pool filled with reeds and lotus; the delicate fall of bells before a single cherry tree; a rectangular pool with octagonal stepping stones across it. Each has it's own delicacy and mood, and coming upon them is like a respite.
The large island down the center has conversation spots along the water, a delicate wooden bridge, and many cherry trees. Above it floats a mystical set of islands which eventually lead up to a giant mountain surmounted by a dragon whose shining eyes guard over everything. He has a fantastic curl, feet resting on several levels as he braces himself against stone. From the ground below he is all but invisible; it's only when you look across the sim from a great height that his majesty is revealed.
I particularly liked the use of water and motion as I went. Long streams of cherry blossoms swirl across the sim in constant motion, giving everything the illusion of a constant soft breeze. Water is everywhere, in pools, flowing over wheels, even falling from stone heights and out from under buildings perched at impossible heights. The center of the sim is dominated by water, a deep lake filled with life and delicate touches like paper boats. The reflections are amazing, light and shadow combining across the surface and showing that even in a virtual world there can be the delicate impermanence of light striking still waters.
( More pictures here. )
Light Settings: TOR NIGHT Flyer
Water Settings: Mirror Water
Photographed by Deoridhe Quandry
Post processing: Cropping