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The Avvys
by Sue Wilcox

The Avvys, held this year during the Earth 2 Avatars conference at the ANA Hotel in San Francisco, are awards given to avatar builders for outstanding achievement. The ‘Avvys’ were sponsored by Black Sun Interactive, Silicon Graphics and the Contact Consortium. Prizes were awarded during the Grand Avatar Social in the following categories :


1. Best Overall and Best Originality - Lisa3
Jim Ellis, C. Scott Young, Kelly Sparks (Web Design Group)
VRML 1.0

Humanoid but not-human, Lisa3 expresses the myth of an avatar while conforming to principles of good design and file size.


2. Best Behavior - fred
Protozoa, Inc
VRML 2.0

Appropriately, Fred won because of his personality. VRML is doing well for this to be possible.


3. Best Non-Human - berd
VRML 2.0

Active and strange yet oddly engaging.


4. Best Design - bartender
Gerry Paquette
VRML 1.0

This guy had a character the judges couldn’t ignore. Achieved simply but effectively, from his face to the flip of his tails he won us over.


5. Best Bang for the Buck (most elegant and efficient use of polygons and texture mapping) - fig (the bug)
Marek Walczak
VRML 1.0

This zero gravity bug managed to be beautiful while have low file size down and no textures.


6. Most Realistic - fish
Rob Meyers
VRML 2.0

This model shows that it's possible to create realism without huge complex VRML files. The use of VRML 2.0 behaviors enhanced its appearance.

The judges were:

  • Helen Cho, Web site designer at Quiet-Time
  • Kirk Parsons, Director of Avatars at Black Sun Interactive
  • Bill Niemeyer, Web site designer at Centrimedia
  • Sue Wilcox, VRML Pro at inquiry.com

Lisa3 turned out to be the winner of the Avvy awards for the best avatar. The design team that produced Lisa is:

  • Eli Sagiv - Producer
  • Aeon Networks - conceptualization
  • Kelly Sparks - fashion design
  • Jim Ellis - 3D Modeler,
  • C. Scott Young - VRML designer
  • Jack Coffey - graphic designer

Web Design Group

Web Design Group is a privately held company of graphic artists, 3D modelers, writers, photographers, programmers, and market researchers who design corporate Internet identities.

The first prize was an artist's wooden figure model and a Wacom ArtPad II graphics tablet with a pressure sensitive eraser pen. Winners in all other categories received the latest and greatest full version of Quake for the PC.

**Photo-reproductions of the avatars were produced by Bill Niemeyer

Usually found online at inquiry.com as VRMLPro, Sue regularly writes on VRML and 3D graphics for Web publications. In her spare moments she is a game interface designer and co-author of a series of books on oriental game theory and Go.
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