Windlight Art Critic & Gallery Reviewer, Oema recaps her visit to Skip Staheli’s closing party at The Living Room:
And here I am again return to the Living Room to talk about a very interesting artist, Skip Staheli.
For those who do not know, Skip is a photographer known in the environment of SLife, winner of numerous awards and competitions (Adult Industry Best Erotic Photographer of the Year 2015 and Avi Choice Award winner 2015, fav Fashion and arts Photographer 2016).
All deserved, his talent is unquestionable, not only for its ability to capture a moment or build an artistically interesting situation, but above all, in my opinion, for the realism that transmits to his photographs.
What can be understood with “realism” in SLife and when a picture taken in the virtual environment can be said to be really realistic?
It talks much about realism and it tries to get it using various image processing techniques.
A picture taken in SLife, in itself, if not processed in any way, can not be said to be realistic, despite the mesh has certainly helped to improve the appearance of the avatar and to make it less “cartoon.”
Even the “expressions” that are given to avatars through the facial hud of various mesh heads help to give soul to virtual.
However we are very far from human expressiveness and photos in SLife often seem “fake”, especially to those unfamiliar with the known virtual platform.
This is why I often show photographs taken in SLife to people who do not know it, to hear their impressions.
Usually comments complaining about the lack of realism of the picture, the most frequent comment is “you see that are fake.”
Skip Staheli, however, has put all agree.
His realism is impressive, his ability to convey “the soul and feelings” through photos taken in a virtual environment is admirable.
Some of his pictures tell stories, they leave space to imagination.
Skip is particularly attentive to the lights, like any good photographer.
This is an aspect that is particularly noticeable by observing his raw photos, the ones with the green screen.
The comparison between the initial and the final result photo makes understanding the great work that is “behind the scenes.”
In fact, photos of SLife have two major limitations, the hair and the skin.
Both seem are fake, unreal.
The hair is no movement, the skin has no pores, no imperfections.
Skip can correct these two elements.
What techniques he uses, is not given to know, though, knowing the graphics software, I have some ideas about it.
There remains one final aspect difficult to correct, even for a connoisseur of graphic: the expressiveness, the ability to convey emotions, feelings … in short, the soul of the shooting subject.
I always thought and still think that the artist is able to transmit his emotions to works that creates.
Put another way, there is a “non-objective component” that makes the difference.
I see this also in amateur photos, taken by people in SLife for fun, with no claim to professionalism.
Some have “soul”, others doesn’t.
The soul is that of the artist, by force of circumstances.
Furthermore Skip adds elements to the scene, also starting from a simple image on the green screen is able to mix the elements and the observer is not able to realize that it is overlapping.
Sometimes, noting the elements from which he started, you have the feeling that he would be able to portray whatever has in mind, even without big elements to work on.
However the aspect I like most of his works, is not his graphics capabilities (which is undeniable), but his ability to convey emotions.
The virtual environment is by its nature cold compared to the real one, the pixels can not compete with a true portrayal or with a real landscape; and this is where lies the real skill of a photographer SLife, be able to give “soul” to pixels.
I will follow the exhibitions of this good artist with pleasure, in the meantime I leave you, as always, all references to appreciate the work, starting from the SLURL of the exhibition at the Living Room to his Flickr page.
Living Room Teleport to Living Room
Skip Staheli Flickr: Visit here