Wednesday, 8 May 2013

For the Hoard! April - Week 2a - Tekeli-li

This week is the reason I am so behind with my April posts. I went a bit nuts and spent a whole month's savings, plus another week's stipend borrowed from Rudh, on two sales. That equates to a LOT of items, and a lot of outfit and photo preparation. I want to showcase them all but I don't want everyone's eyes to glaze over, so I'm splitting this week into two posts.

~: TEKELI-LI! :~

Prompting my purchasing rampage was the news that Tekeli-li, one of my favourite exotic stores, was having a downsizing sale. Now, it has to be said that I want just about everything he makes, so I have to try to be sensible. However, a 50% sale is like a candle to a moth; add in the fact that he said he would be retiring some "older stock" - but not which stock. (Cunning, eh?) I immediately bought up everything I'd had half an eye on which could conceivably go; including several sets of sculpted lanterns which I won't bother to blog because you can't get them now anyway (his furnishings range was a definite retiree and I half suspect he will remake them in mesh, which will be lower prim and thus more suitable to my small parcel, but oh well). 

Since this whole post is going to be about his creations, I may as well combine it with something I've wanted to do for a while, which is to showcase my favourite designers. His sim was gorgeous, very beautiful in an alien way, and I'm very sad to see it go; you can see a little of what it was like in my Colour Challenge: Patina post from last year. I don't know why he has scaled down, one would imagine sim costs, though when I IM'ed my regrets he replied that it wasn't so much that he was forced to give it up as that LL had given him the opportunity. Very Zen and mysterious. Almost immediately after his announcement, another favourite designer, Epic Toy Factory closed - rather abruptly! - for good, and I started having paranoid panic attacks that LL had done something heinous and forced out a wave of designers. I only recently discovered ETF and I'm really sad that it's gone, but I'm glad Tekeli-li remains, even if it's on a much smaller parcel.

I bought 4 whole sets of jewellery, as well as some other items, at the sale and will showcase three of them here (the fourth set is perfectly suited to the main theme of the next post). I love Tekeli-li creations for several reasons, and I think my purchases show why. They are beautiful and intricately made; they are versatile, because each piece has texture and colour change scripting, or you can mod them yourself if the default colours aren't quite to your liking; and they are exotic. Everything he makes is a work of art and perfect for any fantasy setting or roleplay, from the fae to the monstrous. His inspiration comes largely from SFF works, in particular the horror paradigm of H.P. Lovecraft; he has a special affinity for the undersea races; and George R. R. Martin's unfinished epic Game of Thrones (he has begun making mesh jewellery to represent the royal Houses of that world and his first set was kraken based, for House Greyjoy of the Iron Islands). Although many of the elements of his craft could be considered horrific, they are so stylised and intricate that they evoke admiration rather than repulsion. In any case, it is best to let the pieces speak for themselves, so here they are: three jewellery sets to complement three very different and (in two cases) unique avatars.

~: Orange Blossom Dryad :~

Jewellery and prim-kini ~ Flora ~ by Tekeli-li

Poses ~ Changes ~ by Ma Vie for the Attic (April)
Purchased on 30th April, the last day of that theme at the Attic but a Tuesday [pay day] and so technically the first purchasing week of May; yes, I posed for these shots long after I bought the jewellery! I had a lot to do. The poses may still be available at Ma Vie mainstore.

Wheee, I'm an orange tree!

Plucking fruit

Pensive - maybe thinking about the environment?
One of the things I LOVE about Tekeli-li is that his prim bikinis fit me perfectly. I only have to adjust them very slightly on the movement arrows. When I think of all the time and trouble I have taken in the past on very inferior quality primkinis..! (Not actually that much, because I just didn't bother.) I purchased this Flora set, the full jewellery (necklace, headpiece, earrings and bracelets) and bikini, as a treat for my dryad. 

The flower petals, butterfly wings, leaves and connecting metal parts all change colour separately, so you could make it any colour combination you wanted. It works by simple chat command and all pieces respond to the same command so you can change the whole set in a few lines; there is a notecard with a wide choice of colours. Because of the colour change versatility, you wouldn't want to descript the items, but Tekeli-li promises low lag scripts (though I probably wouldn't go changing things during a high traffic event!) Of course, as with all his items, the set is copy/mod so you can tinker happily if that is your thing; I must admit to being an inveterate tinker, there is hardly a thing I own that I haven't messed about with in some way, but his jewellery really doesn't need it. I did tint the flexisilks on the bikini orange to match (they are the only unscripted part). 

Obviously I went with orange to complement my skin, and then looked for somewhere lovely to take pictures. The Botanical Gardens is a beautiful public sim and I soon found orange trees to make my new floral dryad feel at home. For details on the rest of the dryad avatar, please see my Colour Challenge: Wales post.

~: Lionfish Mermaid :~

Jewellery ~ Eldritch ~ Tekeli-li (purchased at sale)

Helm/hair ~ Kraken ~ Tekeli-li (purchased at sale)

ni.ju tintable claws

Avatar ~ Lionfish Deep One (reddish female) ~ Tekeli-li 
Full avatar with shape (but I used my own), skin, eyes, all fin/spine parts shown, spear and net, fishy shoulder pet and swimming AO. Also comes with a very pretty but unscripted set of seashell jewellery, which I exchanged for the Eldritch set.

Hunter of the Deep

I'm amused that in my previous post I was all dressed in pink, and then I made a completely different avatar, all wild and monsterish, and it's STILL pink! Tekeli-li gave me the avatar a long time ago and she is just the model for the new hair and jewellery. I took these pictures at the Ordovician [prehistoric] reef beneath his shop, which used to be a satellite and is now his main store. 

The Eldritch jewellery set comprises necklace, bracelets, earrings and a headpiece (not worn due to the  Kraken helm). The angry looking little squids are actually representations of Great Cthulhu, and if you don't know who he is, that's probably for the best! The hairstyle has a stylised squid (kraken) helmet with colour change on the eyes, suckers, connective (here, copper) and central (here, black) metal parts. The tentacular 'hair' is scripted to writhe gently, although you can turn this off, and is available in several colour packs (not colour-change scripted); I purchased the Neutrals pack because the light grey lends itself to tinting, as I did here (told you I like tinkering!) It was quite fiddly to make sure all the hair was tinted and avoid changing the helmet, so if you can't be bothered, just pick the best colour pack to suit your needs. 

Apart from my own shape and the ni.ju claws, everything on this avatar is from Tekeli-li and 'as is' (except for tinting the hair) so it isn't particularly creative on my part, but I think it looks great and makes a very interesting and animalistic mermaid. 

~: Eater of Souls :~

Jewellery ~ Pnath ~ Tekeli-li
Bloodlight Daggers ~ Tekeli-li
Hair/horns ~ Efreet ~ Tekeli-li (previous purchase)
(see credits below for everything else).

Something wicked this way comes...

And like a thunderbolt she falls...

The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!


I went to town on this avatar. I call it my Soul Eater, the dark version of my Shinigami (Death Spirit) from the Colour Challenge: Ghost White. Essentially the same creature, the Soul Eater specialises in taking the souls of the wicked, and consumes them. Note how the skin, eyes and mouth are the same on both avatars, though the Soul Eater's eye-teeth are bloody from devouring its prey. The eyes are based on the Corinthian, a [literal] nightmare of Neil Gaiman's creation in his Sandman graphic novels, one of my favourite works of fiction. I found the perfect gothic setting at the HQ for the Woeful Wednesday macabre sales collective, at Hobbs End (Woeful Wednesday, as you might expect, features a bunch of my favourite designers) and used one of the new Phototools windlight sky settings, Jessica Light 04, which shrouds everything at a distance in fog. I'm not too impressed with most of these new settings, which aren't a patch on the old standards, but I do like the fog effect.

The Pnath jewellery set was perfect for this avatar, though because of the cloak, you couldn't see the necklace. I enlarged it and set it around my waist as a girdle instead, and used a high posture collar with ankh detail from Rasetsukoku to set off the neckline. As usual with Tekeli-li jewellery, this set comprises bracelets, earrings and a headpiece as well. The eye in the middle of each piece moves around as though alive and watching! 

The hair, horns and hairpin knife (which I also used on the Shinigami, minus the horns) are a combined style called Efreet, very suitable to a demonic look. You could use a hairbase tattoo if you didn't want to look bald, or fit it to another hairstyle as I did with the Shinigami. The knife is scripted to draw/sheathe, switching between the hair dagger and a hand-held version. The two Bloodlight daggers at my waist are likewise scripted to draw (held in the hands) and sheathe, are mod so you can add your own weapon scripts, and have a lovely animated, flickering effect in the blade texture which of course would not show on a still photo. I don't fight in SL, but I do have a penchant for bladed weapons and have a collection of esoteric swords. These daggers make a very nice addition to the collection. All the items are shown with their default colours, which match the skin and outfit, but are colour change just like all Tekeli-li products.

In total I used items from 11 different stores to make this avatar, two of which unfortunately are no longer around. Besides Tekeli-li, the credits go to:-

Pose ~ Divinely Naughty angel pose set ~ Juicy
Skin ~ Fear (in goth) ~ Frick @Saint Helene
Eyes ~ "Corinthian" stained contacts ~ Nomine
Mouth ~ Shark Teeth ~ ContraptioN
Tongue ~ Forked tentacle tongue ~ DMMDI (store doesn't seem to exist anymore)
Outfit ~ Soul Eater Lady ~ Bare@Rose
Collar ~ Unseelie Collar ~ Rasetsukoku (hunt prize)
Feet ~ Harpy Myth Boots ~ Lazy Places (store doesn't seem to exist anymore)
Claws ~ Bloodsilver Talons ~ HEX - Get Nailed!
Wings ~ Aurora particle wings ~ by Coadey Concord (free, full perms)

The Aurora wings are absolutely mesmerising wings with around a dozen preset values in varying patterns and colours, but if you are confident you can tweak the values to create your own style. These were the first wings I ever bought on SL, for my [then main] alt account. They have since been released onto the marketplace for free, and I would be happy to give a set to anyone who wants them.

~: A final shout-out to this amazing designer :~

No more pictures! But at a rough count, including the aforementioned items, I have accumulated 14 jewellery sets including 3 matched bikinis; 15 hairstyles; 5 avatars (2 Starspawn, 3 Deep Ones of differing fish species); 2 monster sculptures, a throne, countless lanterns & various odds and ends! I think it's fair to say that Tekeli-li holds a good sized chunk of real estate in my inventory, and I used his hair and/or jewellery in several of my Colour Challenge posts last year:

Coral mermaid, Bright Turquoise Mystic Mog, Pistachio Deep One Elder Priestess (the Star Spawn staff had to make an appearance), Unmellow Yellow Twi'lek dancer, some earrings sneaked onto my Royal Blue Cyberpunk Angel, Ghost White Shinigami (as mentioned), and Tangelo Phoenix Dancer for the "Alluvium" abstract mesh set which is a newer and rather simpler (but still gorgeous) style - and pretty nearly all that I am wearing! ;)

Tekeli-li you are a fabulous, incomparably talented designer and I hope you never leave us. Thank you for the artistic joy your many builds have brought to me.

~: :~

...the nightmare, plastic column of fetid black iridescence, oozed tightly onward through its fifteen-foot sinus, gathering unholy speed and driving before it a spiral, rethickening cloud of pallid abyss vapor. It was a terrible, indescribable thing vaster than any subway train - a shapeless congeries of protoplasmic bubbles, faintly self-luminous, and with myriads of temporary eyes forming and unforming as pustules of greenish light all over the tunnel-filling front that bore down on us, crushing the frantic penguins and slithering over the glistening floor that it and its kind had swept so evilly free of all litter. Still came that eldritch, mocking cry: 'Tekeli-li! Tekeli-li!'
-- H.P. Lovecraft, At the Mountains of Madness (1936)

I am extremely cross with the studio execs for passing over Guillermo Del Toro's At The Mountains of Madness (based on the HP Lovecraft story which features Shoggoths and their endless "Tekeli-li!" chanting). This, according to rumour, was due partly to Prometheus bearing a certain superficial resemblance (hey; HP Lovecraft wrote in the early 1900s! Whose story should get priority?) and partly to Del Toro insisting it live up to an R rating; which is blatantly hypocritical [of the execs], since Prometheus is rated R. Frankly, if a horror film isn't an R one has to wonder if there is any point to it. I hope he does manage to make it at some point.

~: :~


  1. WOW that is an epic post! I don't think I've ever read one that is so long! I think though that I love the Eater of Souls look, it really appeals to my dead girl side hehe... I do love the hair on the mermaid too, but for some reason it is the Soul Eater I like best hehe... Sad to see about these two stores closing, that is crappy, but least Tekeli-li is still around making stuff to add to your hoard in future!

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