Last month we designed, fabricated, & installed this custom illuminated display booth for DPG in Boston.
You can find some photos of the finished product on my site.
During the final construction of the project, less than a week before it was due in Boston, we needed to change our construction location. Here’s a little timelapse video from those last few crazy days to pull it all together!
Justin Kuzma did an excellent job as usual with electrical, engineering, and helping me with fabrication, as did our production intern Meredith.
Special thanks goes out to Nicholas Giordani (Sound Designer of ZX) who collaborated with me to co-create audio for my new logo animation, as well as an original track for this video.
ZX: Explore an interactive, collaborative, indoor/outdoor audiovisual experience. Your hand movements unknowingly intertwine with someone else’s voice to co-create a dynamic audio & visual immersive.
This 10-foot tall installation is designed to be weather proof, easily transportable installation for multiple locations, so expect to see more of this form iterated on in the future. ZX is built using Processing, Modul8, & MadMapper, with interaction made possible with the Leap Motion Controller.
The first installation kicks off this Friday at Champlain College’s Perry Hall at 5:30pm and I’m very proud to be a featured alumnus for the event.
After an incredibly busy January, I’m looking forward to taking next week to reflect, catch up on a hefty backlog of blog posts, and get new content ready for my new site launch!
I’m beyond excited for what 2014 holds. -Craig
Had a fantastic time working in the studio all this past week, sharing a desk with my great friend and very talented San Francisco based illustrator Michael Ackerman.
This is part 2/3 of my recap series inspired by attending INST-INT last month!
Alex discussed how we used to consume media in large groups in the theater on large screens. Then we brought home televisions for smaller groups of family and friends. Since then, media consumption has become an increasingly intimate individual experience, with screens shrinking down from computer, to laptop, to tablet, and finally to phone. The next step toward intimacy is to actually integrate them with our vision through VR tech.
He stated that our technology is growing faster than we can understand it, isolating and disrupting our physical human experience.
Whether or not you think this is a good thing, it’s certainly an inevitable future with so many VR consumer products hitting the market: Google Glass, Oculus Rift, OMNI Treadmill, Steam’s rumored VR innovation… these are all products that are augmenting, and even replacing, reality.
Sure, VR tech has been around since the 60’s and its popularity ebbs and flows, but the difference this time is that the world is actually ready. We’ve been primed for this by gradually closer and more intimate screens.
As screens get closer to our face, we see less of the world around us.
The concerning part is losing reality, because… well, real life is important. Entertainment began with stories told around campfires, performers on a stage. Very human connections. The human experience is important… but the human experience is also becoming digital.
Finding new ways of accentuating physical space with digital content (and for that matter, providing digital content a physical space) can ease more people into considering (and accepting) the possibilities of virtualizing reality.
To do this we need to stimulate more senses than sight and sound alone, and some people already are. In Eric Brockmeyer's talk, he shared how Disney Research developed a digital surface that gives different texture, and tactile response. Eventually we'll need to tackle all of our senses, and smell and taste will also need to be considered to create complete immersion.
Too future? Probably not.
Looking at how flavoring is artificially formulated for food, and aromas are synthesized for perfumes, I imagine creating the “RGB of taste" or "CMYK of smell" isn’t too far off.
These are all exciting doorways to create entirely new human experiences.
Let’s just be sure to remember the importance of that human part.
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In the third and final part of this series, I’ll dive into my favorite theme that emerged at INST-INT: magic, and the balance between a polish-perfect illusion and a drawn-back curtain.
Stay tuned for PART 3: Magic vs. Seams.
If you missed it, here’s PART 1: Break, Embrace, Repeat.
If you’re enjoying these posts, please leave a comment!
I’m planning similar recurring blog segments for 2014.
This first post is going to focus on projection mapping as a medium, its vast capabilities, and tight limitations. To kick this off I just need to say this: those capabilities are indeed vast.
You can create anything from subtle surface animations, to massive dimensional illusions. Although these possibilities seem limitless, there are spatial restrictions: you have to project on an actual object. You simply aren’t going to get a fully dimensional hologram (yet). Mary Franck summarized this best in her talk when she said "linear perspective only works when content is at a distinctive position and the perspective is controlled."
This means that an illusion meant to be seen from one precise position will be broken if seen from any other point. By moving even slightly to one side, the immersion of an experience can be shattered.
Even the popular, and fantasticly well-executed project, ‘Box’ suffers from this; if you were actually standing in that space, the magic would be broken since you aren’t looking precisely from the tracked camera’s position. Since ‘Box’ was released as an online video, they get around this by having exact and complete control over viewer perspective.
However, by filming an ‘onlooker’ in the video and labeling it as “all-real, no special effects,” they’re essentially leading people on to believe that if they were to step into the space, the projection ‘magic’ would still be fully dimensional. To be clear, I’m not discrediting their amazing work, this piece certainly breaks new grounds and pushes the expectations of the medium.
With any innovation, it’s important to look for inspiration outside the medium we’re designing for. Add new features, reduce until one simple function remains, push something until it breaks; only by knowing the current limits of a medium, can we begin to break them.
The next step, a very difficult one, is allowing people to actually be there to experience it.
With rapidly emerging consumer Virtual Reality products like the Oculus Rift, Google Glass, and OMNI treadmill, what happens when we begin to push these limits so far that they begin to replace our current reality?
These are questions I’ll be exploring in PART 2 of this INST-INT recap, Blending Reality.
Last month I travelled to Minneapolis to attend the first INST-INT, a gathering focused on sharing insights + experiences from the field of interactive installation. Weeks have passed and I’m still reeling from the great conversation, huge inspiration, & brilliant minds I connected with.
The conference organizers are beginning to roll out some quality speaker videos so I won’t recap all the talks. Every speaker was fantastic in their own way, so I’ve decided to focus on a few distinct themes from the conference that impacted me most.
I’ll be sharing these reflective posts as a three part series over the next few days.
Part 1: Break/Embrace Medium Limitations
Part 2: Blending Reality
Part 3: Magic vs. Seams
I’m incredibly excited to be in Minneapolis this weekend attending INST-INT, “a gathering focused on sharing insights + experiences from the field of interactive installation.”
Not sure how I could better describe a conference I’d want to go to.
The conference is limited to 250 attendees, with single-track presentations given by Kimchi and Chips, Disney Research, Random International, Universal Everything… it’s essentially a room full of amazingly talented individuals who inspired me to do what I’m doing today.
In a time of great evolution for the studio, it was inspiring to work so closely with Michael Jager and very talented design director Allison Ross to compliment such well thought-out content with simple, engaging visuals.
Jager’s themes throughout the event were about the future of the design world and the necessary transition from a closed gestalt (one large multi-discipline studio) to an open gestalt of creative collaboration across a network of talented groups of individuals.
If you’ve read my xoxo reflection post, you’ll know that this theme of independent togetherness has been a recurring theme I’ve felt, which is in part why I was so motivated to work on this project.
That, and to create a memorable, impactful, Design Week Portland experience.
Photos by Issac Marchionna.