Oona sent out a bat signal, last month. I thought I’d renew that cry for help, here, in Creativity by responding to her questions as a post. I don’t think my experiences at Medici University (MU) are unique, but I do think they might inspire others to share their stories. At least I hope so. So here goes:
Is Medici University important to you and why?
Where do I start? MU is incredibly important to me. Why? Because I didn’t consider myself an artist before I came to MU. Now, I do. That’s an amazing thing.
It might sound a bit histrionic, but it’s true: MU has made me an artist.
For me, being a student at MU has been a life-altering experience. It seems a bit like I had all this creativity locked away inside of me and MU provided the key. I originally toyed with the idea of making an installation when I first got here, but thanks to Astrid’s A to Z challenge I became a Second Life photographer.
How did you come to be here?
Izzy asked me to come as a DJ and help set up KPO. She gave me a studio, too.
If you think back on the first day to now, do you see growth in yourself?
Can you hear me laughing? Growth?! I felt like a sapling when I started and now I’m a towering redwood. Yeps. Lots and lots of growth. When I started at MU, I was a DJ with studio space. Now, I feel I’m as much an artist as everyone else on campus. I’ve grown in ways I never would have thought possible.
Has being amongst like minded creators, improved the amount of time you work on your creative side?
Yes, being with all the creative people on campus, learning from them, and, most importantly, feeling their positive creative energy has made me feel incredibly creative.
What specifically do you enjoy about Medici U?
I love the creative feel of the school. The sense we’re all part of this experience positively radiates throughout the school. I love that everyone is so willing to help and share their knowledge. And I love how excited most people seem to be, contributing in-world and online. There’s just so much positive energy on the campus, it’s incredible.
Honestly, what specifically do you not enjoy about Medici U?
Honestly, and this is a personal thing, so please no one take offense, but I’ll put it out there. I don’t like awards at art schools. Everyone is an artist. In my opinion, whether intended or not, awards give the impression that one person’s art is more valuable than another person’s. It’s nice to be recognized, but I don’t think awards are appropriate in art schools.
What would you like to see here at Medici U that isn’t already here?
The campus needs some more places that exhibit student art. We’re working on that with the art gallery and the coffee house, but an art park would be nice, too.
Maybe I’m wrong about this, but in my opinion there’s not enough machinima on campus. Machinima is arguably SL’s native art form. I’d love to see more focus on it.
What would encourage you to spend more time here at Medici U?
If the campus had more cozy places – we’re working on it – I’d hang out here more.
I’d also love more photography lessons. The one class I had with Fanny was incredibly helpful. So maybe more master classes, focusing on a specific discipline, such as writing, photography, or machinima.
Do you think its a good idea to extend or renew Medici University for a second go around?
I think it would be a good idea to make MU a permanent SL sim. MU is unique in SL and is exactly what SL needs to foster greater interest in virtual art. In terms of activity and attendance, MU has been a huge success, especially when compared to other LEA sims. MU could be a cornerstone of the SL art community, and a greater focus on art is sure to bring more people into SL, which is good for Linden Labs.