So this post will be an interesting change of pace, and first for the blog: an experience design review for Hotel Vermont in Burlington, VT.
Last night I stayed at the newly opened Hotel Vermont in Burlington, VT for a complimentary feedback/review stay. A delicious dinner at Juniper, carefully crafted drinks, incredibly comfortable beds, and a solid breakfast, were all part of the experience. Overall, I was impressed. This place is offering something new to Burlington: a Vermont-focused boutique hotel, for those willing to pay a little more for a considered hotel experience.
My sister Brittany, who invited me to take part in the review, focused on critiquing what she does best: full-service hospitality, guest services, and hotel management. I decided to focus on the experience itself, design details, and functional aesthetics.
First off, Juniper, the hotel’s bar & restaurant, serves very good food (though a little pricey) that could easily compete with a handful of my local favorites (Farmhouse, Bluebird, Flatbread, Pizzeria Verità to name a few). We decided to sit at a long, tiered shared table, which smoothly transitioned into a great environment for a few well-crafted drinks. Think similar vibes to Farmhouse’s basement ‘Parlor’ but much brighter, and with a large outdoor patio. Additionally, Hen of the Wood will soon be in-house, right next door, so the food situation will be top notch both at the hotel and nearby.
The lighting throughout Hotel Vermont is great, specifically, side-lit guest room doors, back-lit bathroom mirrors had a clean bounce light, and well-placed lamps and fixtures. The elevators were the only big problem for me. Transitioning from a relaxing lounge environment, their harsh fluorescents made for a squint-inducing trip back to the room. Dimming/warming them at night would be a nice touch.
Breakfast in the morning was surprisingly delicious as well, and I love me a good breakfast. There’s also damn good coffee and espresso. The cappuccino I had was far above “hotel coffee” for sure. If I were visiting, it would make for a hard decision whether or not to brunch at the hotel, or choose one of the great breakfast places in town. That means something, with options like Penny Cluse and Magnolia so close by.
Guest rooms have simple swipe-card access, are nicely laid out, feel comfortable, and have many Vermont-made elements within. You can feel the strong effort to custom considerations throughout Hotel Vermont, but unfortunately the details aren’t yet explained anywhere. Subtle, carefully placed metal medallions explaining each element could be a nice touch throughout the lobby/Juniper area, while a well-designed printed card would be great to explain room elements.
As Hotel Vermont continues to establish themselves as an everything-considered, cut-no-corners experience, they should also be critical of graphic design details, coupons, parking passes, etc. Their clientele will certainly notice and appreciate the small creative design details that will make for a memorable stay.
The detailed vision is there, and hopefully the service and attention to detail will continue to grow to deliver the full-service boutique service they seem to want to provide.
Tonight I setup my first official projection mapping installation, in the storefront of Treasure&Bond for a BucketFeet pop-up shop.
The installation process took a while but everything fell smoothly into place. Huge thanks to Jerome from Treasure&Bond for assisting me through the entire process!
BucketFeet is hosting a launch party tomorrow night, and I’m incredibly proud to be an exciting part of it.
The display at Treasure&Bond will be up through the rest of May; be sure to check it out at night if you’re in the Soho area!
I’m excited to share that I’ll soon be leaving JDK to start a ‘solo career,’ as Craig Winslow II. I’ll be pursuing new mediums, innovating existing ones, and most importantly, collaborating with others.
Welcome to my new studio space.
I’ll be sharing this new space with the fantastic human, Brett Chalupa.
‘illuminimal’ hitting Gizmodo was huge for me, and the amazing response gave me the confidence and clarity to start my own path.
My last day at JDK is May 17th, 2013.
This date exactly 3 years ago, May 17th, 2010, a week fresh out of Champlain College, I started as a JDK LAB intern working on digital production of Burton snowboards. I thought it a fitting date to start my next chapter; it’s truly been a wild three years.
Expect rolling changes to www.craigwinslow.com over the next month; there’s a few more announcements up my sleeve.
Footwear projection mapping project performed live using a pair of Merrell Bare Access 2 and a pedestal.
An in-depth making of will be posted here in parts, but for the time being, here’s the previous process posts: blog.craigwinslow.com/tagged/illuminimal
First things first, the performance of Illuminimal went very well. As my first full projection mapping project, I’m very proud of how it turned out.
So, posting daily updates clearly didn’t happen through the end of last week. Late nights, early mornings, and an all-nighter on Thursday kept me busy enough to realize a few hours talking about my progress was the least of my concern; the clock was ticking.
I think it’s important, and hopefully interesting, to share the process of what I work on, but when the project requires full attention, there’s often no time to reflect-on-the-fly. I stuck to sharing quick blips on instagram, thoughts on twitter, and I came to the following conclusion:
Over the weekend, Mike Deedy and I shot some more footage, and following an epic day of snowboarding on Sunday, I put together a rough cut of the video. I definitely forgot how much I enjoy editing.
Speaking of, I might just need to edit a longer cut of my 1-minute west coast trip video from almost exactly a year ago…
The Illuminimal video should be online sometime this week, followed by a series of deeper making-of posts that break down elements of this project I haven’t touched upon. Very excited to share.
Being in the creative “what if?” phase of any project is exciting.
What typically follows, are all of the logistics necessary to actually execute the project, which often puts a strong damper on the excitement had for the idea from the beginning.
This mapping project has been the reverse; deciding to first tackle all logistics/planning/setup/hard stuff, has put us in a position of flowing creativity and most importantly, rapid execution.
Shown above, an audio breakdown helps us storyboard and ideate.
After building a template for the projection content (concept template, above left, current template in action, above right), Josh, Jeff and I can very quickly create content, and using a shared Dropbox folder, see it on our dimensional canvas within seconds.
I’m exploring a few other 3D tools as well, such as the BLAM camera calibration toolkit for Blender, and Mapamok by Kyle McDonald, to synchronize a camera in Blender to the exact point of the projector in the real world. This part is definitely more difficult than I expected, but once I smooth out the logistics, it’ll make creating 3D content/lighting for it all that more exciting.
Moving forward, I’ll be aiming for daily blog posts leading up to the big finish this Friday, March 22nd at 4pm. My good friend and fellow Champlain College Alumn Mike Deedy will be filming it, so expect ‘Illuminimal’ to drop early next week on the interwebs.
Last night, I spent a while setting up the projector, making sure it was tightly mounted it to an armature on a vertical pole. Jeff came in and we strung up both shoes into position with fishing line, using four contact points to ensure each hangs in just the right spot.
Earlier last week, I carefully wrapped each shoe with white tape, and then spray painted them matte white. This makes for a consistently even, bright surface to project onto.
Here are some shots of the space last night:
The video tested in the last image is from making-of footage of the MINT shirt box, which I’ll eventually edit and get on vimeo!
Our projection canvas is set… Much more to come this week, leading up to the performance/presentation, this Friday!
For a few weeks now I’ve been excitedly researching and planning a projection mapping project, using a pair of Merrell running shoes and a pedestal.
There will be sound-reactive animations, colorway collaborations (with Josh Franklin and Jeff Yeager), and 3D elements, all performed live to music using an iPad with a custom TouchOSC interface as a controller. The project is scheduled to be shown at JDK’s staff meeting on March 22nd, filmed, edited, and shared online shortly after.
With less than three weeks to go, March is going to be a busy month.
All of this is a giant, creative, learning experience, so I’ll be documenting with regular updates throughout the process.
Speaking of, you can now subscribe for email updates!
So, I’ve really taken to Instagram.
The simplicity of focusing on a single image at a time is great, and it’s interesting to see how people visually represent their experiences.
Shown here are a few personal favorites from my instagram collection.
This could easily be the start of a recurring monthly post of selected shots!
Browse more on Instagram here, follow along, and show me what you’ve got!