I volunteered to set up the class website to help promote our exhibition. My lecturer helped set it up and it became my responsibility to add the work of the students. Adding the work was not an issue but even after chasing up the students for their work it kept coming through quite slowly. This meant that often I would interrupt my own projects to add the images and other material into the website. I did however always try to add it on the day I received the work to ensure that our show could be promoted successfully.
Setting Up The Show
Monday 24th April
This was a test of my project by one of the students. Feedback was very positive and I was really happy my project was working with the virtual reality headset. I needed to check this before taking all the equipment down to the exhibition so if there was any problem downstairs I would know it was the equipment and not my project.
Tuesday 25th April
Equipment taken down to the exhibition hall.
These are the flyers and posters designed by one of the students. I helped with the printing and cutting off these.
Wednesday 26th April
I arrived at college at 10am as promised to another student so we could go around all the college sites to place the posters and handout the leaflets. The other student did not arrive till 12pm after saying they were delayed and would arrive at 11am. I used the two hours retest my project and speak to the technicians for an update on the plinths.
I also painted my wall of the exhibition and set my posters on foamboard.
Thursday 27th April
I found this plinth to place my promotional material. I spent Thursday morning painting it.
Originally I had a desk but because all the other students had plinths it was decided to ask the technician if a plinth he size of a desk could be quickly made up. I measured it all out and gave the measurements to the technician who were brilliant and told me it could and would be done.
Retested the equipment to ensure my project was working.
Friday 28th April
I came in on Friday at 9am and helped Thea measure up her projector room. I also helped clean up all the mess we had created whilst painting and sanding, this included sweeping, dusting and hoovering.
My plinth was ready by the afternoon and then spent the rest of the day sanding and painting it.
Tuesday 2nd May (Show day!!!)
My promotional material set out.
When we were discussing our show we had decided to print our heads similar to the website and stick them on a wall or place them next to our business cards. However the topic was not raised again until we got a facebook message reminder from Thea on Saturday. I offered to get them printed from my local print shop if we could decide the size. No one responded to my message and the print shop closed early. Instead I bought some photo paper so I could print them myself on better quality paper than the normal A4 paper at college on Tuesday.
My exhibition all set up, everything in working order and all ready to go.
I arrived at college at 8.30am. A couple of other students were already there and the others soon followed. Spent the day setting up, cleaning, printing, helping others, setting out the extra chairs in the screen room and having a practice run on our presentations. I also helped serve the food and drinks when the guests arrived.
Wednesday 3rd May
I arrived at 9.30 and set up the Oculus for my project and started going around turning everyones computers on when Thea also arrived to help. Spent the day at the exhibition and left at 4.30 after putting away the equipment.
Thursday 4th May
Arrived and switched everything on to get the exhibition going and againstayed all day.
A student checking my work out. Positive and excited feedback received.
Friday 5th May
Arrived on time to set up and stayed till 1.30pm when I went to the VFX module where our presentations were due. Afterwards went and put the equipment away again at the end of the lecture.
All the extra bits of equipment were kept under the plinth to keep the area tidy and more professional.
Saturday 6th May
Arrived before 10am on saturday morning and turned on everyones equipment. Other students arrived soon after. We cleared up our equipment by 3pm as there were no more visitors and left the exhibition hall empty.
I was at the exhibition everyday from around 9.30 to 4.30. I turned on everyone’s computers when I arrived and switched them off at the end of the day. Thea was also here with me everyday helping out. The other students came in and left at different times of the day. When any guests arrived I helped with the tours around the gallery explaining the other students work if they were not there at the time of the visits.
The build up to the show was extremely stressful and at times it felt that we would never be able to pull it off. The lecturers and technicians were continuously giving us words of encouragement and I think this helped to motivate us to feel positive about getting things together. The week previous to the show was all about bringing the plinths, computers, equipment and our promotional material to the gallery. Unfortunately we did not have the weekend to prepare as it was a bank holiday weekend. This meant on the Tuesday we were all at college bright and early. We all worked together to clear up the gallery and set up the exhibiton. We all contributed to different parts of the event for example cleaning, printing, setting up the screen room, food shopping and setting out the food. By the deadline of 6pm we had managed to have the gallery ready and even had time to practice our presentation during the afternoon.
The show opened on time and we had quite a few visitors mainly friends and family. It was encouraging to see the guests walking around and interacting with all the students and many stayed the full three hours. The presentations also went well even though we were all a little nervous but the audience listened and showed their appreciation.
The rest of the week we also received visitors, mainly lecturers and students. I also had a lot of my notetakers arrive throughout the week to view my work and also the other students. They wanted to see eveyones work because they had been there throughout the lectures listening to the ideas and seeing parts of the work coming together.
We all had great feedback especially being told that we have had one of the strongest Digital Arts exhibition for some time.
Communication to the Audience
We each had a short presentation on the day of the show to the audience explaining our double project. I was slightly nervous but managed to get through the 2 minutes quite comfortably.
During the week of the exhibition I had many users viewing my project. I explained to the them the concept and the definition of virtual and augmented realities. I had to explain to some how to use the headset and controller and also how to use the app for the augmented reality on the brochure I had made. Everyone seemed to understand the explanations and any questions they had were easily answered.
Clarification from Questions
Some of the questions that were asked by the audience were:
Q: How long the project took for me to create and complete?
A: 8 months
Q: What is virtual reality and how immersive was the experience?
A: A realistic and immersive simulation of a three dimensional 360-degree environment,
Q: How were the models made and what software was used?
A: Models were made in the software Maya and uploaded into a games engine called Unreal Engine.
Q: Why did I choose virtual reality for my final project?
A: The latest technology to view art and experience a visual treat. Also wanted an interactive project that would allow the viewer to be entertained.