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Spotlight On: Artist Claudia222 Jewell

Varda Silver April 5, 2012 Art & Theatre, Event Reviews No Comments

Have you ever wandered into a place and then your like…wow… I have seen this, or felt this before? You may feel this way when you encounter Claudia222 Jewell‘s art projects. Claudia222 is an amazing artist. I have asked several people what they think about her work, starting with “Parellel Worlds” in Farstar New Earth, where I first became a die-hard fan. Some told me that they felt it was creepy, some said it made them in complete awe and shock, other described her work as amazingly beautiful, and I myself, could not take my eyes or my AVI off her sim for hours.

When you venture onto her sims, it does cause a reaction, and whatever you are feeling, well… it makes you feel, and that alone is a rare thing to be able to accomplish on a web-based world.  Her artwork transcends you into a place where you find yourself unable to ignore what you see.  You cannot simply dictate it as a piece of art, or move on to the next piece unmoved.  It is as if, every fiber and being she creates,  possesses you to a point where you must stop and partake of the moment, thought, or vision it emits. This is certainly true of her latest piece, “Spirit” at Art Screamer. After several visits to her sim, I met up with Claudia and we spent a moment talking about her creations.

I felt very privileged she agreed to do the interview.  She met me on the sim decked out in a beautiful enigmatic form.  I asked her what inspired her to start on her path to this type of creation?

“All this in SL always made me believe its magic seeing what people made in 3D. I think I was afraid for a long time to start and try to learn using  in world methods with basic prims. I never had money and used whatever I found along the way, making things completely unaware of prim-allowance in sandboxes. I even complained about lag, loud when I made a field of dancers on flexy prims. I guess it was  almost 2 thousand prims… never aware it might be me causing the lag,” Claudia said.  “I felt a little sad I couldn’t form prims and when I finally had a PC  that worked better,  I got also some free programs to start with making sculpties…  the only way to make more organic shapes then.  It  was all difficult in the beginning for me but  also so incredibly fascinating to see my own made things exist in Second Life. “Parallel Worlds” in Farstar New Earth  [no longer there now] was my first build  in SL, and maybe more accidental, but I also saw UWA (University of Western Australia) had monthly art exhibits with smaller work  below 100 prims per person.”

I asked her why did she think her creation at Farstar New Earth was accidental? She replied, “Oh I  was just making a build for the sim as a test to not have the vehicles and items stuffed in a square room. The idea was to make my own little environment for them where they fit in better. They been first in a  building below, where they didn’t fit in at all… maybe my things are too different, not really appropriate to place them next to a car.”  Claudia smiled as she continued, ” I never intended it to be art, it was more just my own taste. Then, after I  entered it in UWA,  it showed me it is a fun community out there that does much for arts in Second Life, which felt good.  Jayjay Zifanwe and Freewee Ling were very helpful and got me  to meet also many other artists and creators that where in UWA.”

I then asked Claudia if her inspiration came because she was an artist in her non avi life? “Yes, I always create things of visual basis, it’s a huge passion of mine.  I make a living from my creating in real life too, but I am not working in a 3D job.  This is a new area for me, and very addictive to learn more about it.”

I was elated to here that and asked her if she had anything to share with our readers, so they could learn more about her work outside of Second Life. “I don’t have a web site for work I do here and no blog still , but I think I should do that soon.  At the moment,  I exist just on Google and in different platforms where others posted machinimas or photos are made.  I must say,  many do such a fantastic works of art filming and making photos, so great that they do that.  It feels very natural to exist through others that see it. As far as my real life, I prefer to keep that separated from what I do in SL and keep it more private.”

We then went on to talk about the project at hand, her “Spirit” project at Art Screamer, I asked her if this is based off of her own experiences, or from some other place.  Claudia said, ” I think parallel worlds was maybe more based on mythology and made up my own world, more  surreal than to replicate real things. Spirit became a very personal build for me while making it, I think all  started when parallel worlds came it was a great change  in my life then, and I tried to learn and learn to get my head of things in real life that I had to accept.  To learn complicated programs from scratch made it easier for me to not think too much about things I couldn’t change. I stayed more at home, and used my free time next to real life work to learn .”

I asked her if she felt the work she has done in relation to her experiences had helped her in any way. It is said that the web-world can be a great place of healing, and I have met a few on my travels who had told me the same.  “Yes, I do think it helped me. Maybe more than I think, now after a longer time doing this. I think this exhibit was for me like a last  goodbye to  a lost  member of my family, and I had  a very good time here with some sadness, sure, but also a feeling of I will be ok with what happened. All this can be a great new start, it depends how we make decisions in life. I choose to learn new things, and this year was like the result from it, this makes me happy to see it grow slowly into  a greater understanding about 3D programs.  I can only advise all, to try to learn about it , there are many ways of doing things.”

I asked her if she had any advice for anyone out there who wishes to follow in her footsteps after viewing her masterwork?  “Oh, I actually made a notecard I will place here in the sim  for others that are interested and need some handy links for  web sites with more info. I have little time to explain much and help, but I know there are so many great tutorials and helpful hints online, that all that truly want to learn will find it. Hopefully, I will get  some time soon to learn more about avatar makings and animations for Second Life.”

I also had asked her what we could expect to see from her soon. “In a  year I will smake another installation with in a more refreshed way, maybe more fun and happy then. This exhibit will be for another month. I was told last Sunday by Zachh Cale. So plenty of time for all to come and see it still that missed it, and get the freebie avatar I made.”

I thanked her for her gracious response to my invitation and asked her if there was anything to add. Claudia really wish to thank several people she felt really helped her. “Thanks to the  Art Screamer Team, Zachh Cale, Chestnut Rau, and Amase Levasseur for their encouragement and support of people like me.”

With that, we said our mutual thank yous, and I took one more gaze at the masterpiece Claudia had created with “Spirit.” If you get the opportunity, please do make an effort to witness the amazing creations of Claudia222 Jewell.

“Spirit” – http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Art%20Screamer/68/88/23

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