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Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Xues Do Photography and Fashion and MORE at Urban Alley

I love clothes. There. I said it, confessed it. I spend a great deal of time on the grid looking for quality deals and cute clothes--and then finding someone to take a great picture of me while I'm in that hot 'fit. With Candi and Makaveli Xue and their Urban Alley Photo Studio & Main Store, I can get BOTH!

And so can you!

Morph picture created through UA

I befriended Candi not too long ago and through Facebook, I've been able to see some of the wonderful photography she produces. It was after stopping by UA, however, and picking up some cargo pants (I think I snagged every color!) and a few other things, that I knew I had to talk to her and learn a bit more about the talents she and her husband Makaveli exude.

UA Owners, Candi and Makaveli Xue

As a person who loves to take pictures (badly, I'm the tourist that always has a camera glued to her face but doesn't know much about making the photo pretty after the fact!), my first question to Candi dealt with how long she's been into SL photography. I was surprised to learn she'd only been partaking in it for about a year. As you'll see with some of the photos in this article, she has great talent--which means that talent will only grow in the future.

With her "love and passion for graphics," Candi saw that the more she worked on her photography, the better she became. And the better she became, the more she wanted to share her talents with others "by creating works of art for others" -- thus Urban Alley Photo Studio was born.

I'm always fascinated by a photographer's process. Let's face it, any of us can use the snapshot option to take a picture (I do so OFTEN), but it takes talent to transform that picture into something more. I asked Candi about how much time/work goes into the process from snapshot to completed work, and she replied, "The timing all depends on the detail. If it's an extremely detailed photo for example drawn hair or intricate backgrounds, it can take me a few hours. Most times it takes me about an hour maybe less if I already have a theme for the photo in mind." I won't even tell you all how long it takes me to just "smooth-out" my complexion in a picture--and that's when I even take the time to do so.

Beautiful picture created through UA

In addition to the fabulous photographic services provided through Urban Alley, customers can also peruse UA's growing clothing collection. Candi is the designer behind Urban Alley fashions. Whereas she concentrates more on women's and kids' fashions, her husband Makaveli is getting into the men's fashion designs. I asked Candi about inspiration, what drives her to design an outfit, and she replied, "I go through phases when it comes to inspiration for an outfit. I may see something on TV and want to recreate it, but most times I go for something simple with a bit of flare just to be different."

Of course, as a fashionista who loves to save her Lindens for even more fashions, I asked Candi if there were any major specials going through in the photography or fashion end of UA? Although no specials are currently going on, Candi did inform me that in the next couple of weeks she will be having a sale on the fashion end as she gets her fall collection finished and released. You definitely need to head over there and be kept abreast on THAT. And honestly, special or no, UA prices are very reasonable, so if you see something you love, you might as well just pick it up because the price will be great.

Another great photographic work from UA

SO...with all this talent, I had to wonder what Candi saw for the future of Urban Alley. I expected nothing less in the response she gave: "I hope that it can become as big as some of the other bigger businesses that have been around, especially as we expand to offer homes and home furnishings."

Now, as a person who likes to buy houses (don't ask me why when I only need one to live in), I really didn't need to know about the homes and home furnishings (remind self: need another job to buy these things).

Candi and Makaveli Xue with Urban Alley are already showcasing wonderful talents, and right now, the sky's not even the limits to just how far they can go to bring more wonderful products and services to the people of Second Life.

I already know you want to know more about Urban Alley, so I'll say nothing else--except give you this [slurl].


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