I am a hobbit

Caras Galadhon, Lorien, Lord of the Rings Online

 My name is Linden. I’m a hobbit from the Shire, wandering Middle Earth bashing random orcs over the head with my theorbo (for the threat reduction) and singing things to death.  I’m short, with freckles, and like most hobbits, I love farming. 

No, I haven’t gone insane. 

I’m working out the details of a new project that I’ve had at the back of my mind for a while.  Photographers seem to love the whole self-portrait/identity idea, but I’ve shied away from it for a long time.  Chalk it up to a bad Photo 101 experience or whatever (you don’t want to know – body parts that shouldn’t be displayed for critique in a class setting were) but it’s not a subject I’ve been very interested in exploring.    Recently though, I’ve been considering the implications of a virtual world – an MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game) named Lord of the Rings Online.

Now that my geek status is firmly in place, let me elaborate.  To some random group of 100+ people, I AM Linden.  A hobbit minstrel, short and pudgy, who loves to craft (big surprise there, right?) and occasionally talks on voice chat to prove she actually is female.  Well, I use VC for other things too, but I rarely do so because my mic is uncomfortable.  I am also Laurel, a hunter that specializes in shooting orcs full of arrows and acts as a taxi when needed. 

All in all, when these people visualize me as a person, they picture a hobbit, a human, or an elf character.  Whether they actually know my real name or recognize my in-game names from random pugs (pick up groups,) my identity is technically a bunch of pixels.  The real person behind the avatar isn’t as important as the avatar, or how well the avatar accomplishes her tasks. 

I really want to explore this concept in a series of self portraits and portraits, but so far I’m stubbing my toe on two major obstacles. 

1. Screen captures are only so large.  Resolution sucks.  Plus, my dinosaur computer, almost 7 years old, can’t display the game graphics as well as this project would require.

2. I have a real problem using someone else’s art in mine.  LoTRO world art is created by a team of hardworking developers.

For now, this concept is still just that – stewing on the back burner of my mind.  

For those who might be interested (all two of you!) I play on the Gladden server, and am an officer in the kin The Coming Kingdom.  Both my husband and I have played since Open Beta (over 3 years now.)   ::waves:: Hi Kinmates!  I’m always up for a nice Sammath Gul run or something fun.  By the way, TV is boring – try playing a video game sometime and see what it’s like.  I’ll even craft you some armour!

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