A Mixed Reality Volumetric UNESCO Storytelling Experience in Liverpool
Jun 2019 09

Immersive Storylab in collaboration with Liverpool University’s Centre of Architecture and the Visual Arts (CAVA), Culture Liverpool, Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, Draw & Code, Cinetecture and Dimension Studios have developed a ground-breaking participatory and immersive mixed reality experience.

The project, called “If These Walls Could Talk”, brings together world-leading researchers with BAFTA winning writers, a world-class performing arts organisation and immersive technology experts.

The location-based prototype was produced for one of Liverpool’s most iconic heritage buildings – the 19th century St George’s Hall (Harvey Lonsdale Elmes, built 1841–1854), which is an intrinsic part of Liverpool’s UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The experience sees the famous court case of Florence Maybrick who was accused of poisoning her husband, and taken on a journey back in time to experience and feel what it was like to encounter Liverpool’s late Victorian prison and justice system. Set across the cells and the courtroom at St George’s hall, the experiences uses variety of technologies such as Virtual Reality, 3d Projection Mapping, Mixed Reality (Microsoft Hololens) and live performance to invite the audience into the last moments of the court case.

The experience used a headset device called the Hololens, which enables users to see both the real world and the virtual one at the same time. With the support of Microsoft’s Mixed Reality team in the US, the team also created the word’s first volumetrically filmed (3D holograms) UNESCO heritage experience using Microsoft’s Mixed Reality capture system at Dimension Studios in London.

Commenting on the experience Peter Woodbridge, Director at Immersive Storylab and the creator and producer of the experience said….

”We think the future of heritage experiences are about how you involve an audience as a participant, rather than as a spectator, in the story. This experience combines the real space with virtual objects to enable us to bring the building to life with virtual characters and sound. In this experience the audience is part of the story, also on trial as they encounter holograms, spatial sounds and stories from the past……

…… Our experience takes place across 5,000 square feet of this magnificent UNESCO world heritage building, which was a real challenge in the ways we had to push the technology.”

BAFTA award winning writer Rosemary Kay, Director at Immersive Storylab, and the writer for the experience says

“This allows the audience to feel immersed in the experience of being a prisoner in this grim place, seeing, hearing all the other prisoners around them….

….The experience treated the audience like Victorian criminals as they were led physically from the dank, cramped cells, past the whipping bench, up the stairs and into the imposing courtroom, where they get tried and found guilty, alongside our historic holograms. We think there’s a real future in these technologies for bringing heritage to life and making us feel a part of it.”

The team behind the experience have been working on research into spatial storytelling, human performance in mixed reality and augmented reality.

Find out more about my work in Immersive Storytelling Experiences in Augmented Reality and Mixed Reality

MA Immersive Arts – Storytelling, Arts and Experiences in Augmented Reality, Mixed Reality, Virtual Reality, Projection, Holographics and Future Screens
Feb 2019 19

Launching in 2019, I am currently involved in developing a pioneering MA Immersive Arts degree where students will explore and experiment with making novel applications and experiences using augmented reality, mixed reality, immersive environments, projection mapping, future screens and virtual reality.

The degree, a collaboration between Liverpool Screen School and Liverpool School of Art and Design, will have dedicated lab spaces and facilities to let you explore, experiment and make experiences happen with immersive technologies.

Drawing from an interdisciplinary range of subject areas, including games, theatre, digital design, film and installation, this degree will equip students with the practical skills, conceptual abilities and the entrepreneurial spirit to experiment with new forms of spatial media arts, immersive storytelling and experience design.

Aimed at students who want to move beyond designing media for boring rectangles, and bringing storytelling and media arts-practice into physical space.

Modules include:

  • Immersive Storytelling
  • Immersive Arts Lab
  • Collaborative Project
  • Research & Development
  • Immersive Arts Project
  • Professional Experience

If you are interested in finding out more, please find the details here

 

 

Immersive Storytelling Experiences – Research Symposium
Sep 2018 21

Immersive Storytelling Experiences – Research Symposium – Call for Speakers

Date/Time: 14th December 2018 12-5pm

Venue: Liverpool Screen School, LJMU,

“Immersive experiences require novel narrative mechanisms & new language of production… The best technology will not produce the change needed without equal excellence in content production and understanding of immersion as a narrative form” – Creative Industries Review 2017

This half day research symposium will explore how researchers, developers and practitioners are approaching the emerging mediums of virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality for storytelling. Looking at languages of production, narrative mechanisms and approaches to engaging audiences in experiential media across the spectrum of immersive technology.

It will be of interest to people developing work across a number of areas: from film and documentary, to performing arts and theatre, to arts, culture and heritage and people experimenting with the future possibilities of storytelling.

We are looking for research presentations, case studies and work-in-progress talks that address the following areas:

  • Approaches to Narrative, Storytelling & ‘Storydoing’ in VR, AR, MR & 360 media
  • Methods of Practice-based Research in Immersive Storytelling
  • Methods of Practice in across Immersive Visitor Experiences, Heritage and Digital Placemaking
  • Approaches to Audience and User Experience with Immersive Technology.
  • Working with Emerging Processes in Immersive Practice (Performance and Volumetric Capture, Sensor-based media, Haptics, Spatial Interfaces, Holographic Projection, Games Engines and real-time rendered media)
  • Uses of immersive storytelling to engage with the wider areas such as health, sport, retail and other sectors.
  • Speculative Arts Practice and Provocations that explore the future of Immersive Storytelling
  • Issues in Academic/Industry Collaborative R&D

Here’s a PDF of the current line up Immersive Storytelling Experiences (1)

You can also sign up to attend the event here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/immersive-storytelling-experiences-research-symposium-tickets-50433970363

Immersive Storytelling with Kafka in VR
Feb 2017 25

Have recently been working on a collaborative research project with folk from the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, FACT Liverpool, LJMU, Kinicho and Manchester School of Art exploring fictional storytelling in 360/VR.

The aim of the project is to develop a prototype scene from Kafka’s novel ‘The Trial’ as a way to explore the medium specific aesthetics and logistics of making films in immersive environments. The team comes from a number of disciplines including filmmaking, theatre, storytelling, new media and sound. We are exploring a number of questions related to using sound, cinematography, editing, agency, embodiment and dramatic staging and performing in a uniquely VR way.

The camera has kindly been provided by the Creative Camera Company in Manchester

It’s a rather exciting time at the moment working with a medium where the conventions are unestablished, and going in a number of different directions, regarding how an audience member is positioned when they are in a film. It feels a bit like it must of felt 120 years ago.

Here’s some pics from the rehearsals at LIPA

Kafka – The Trial of Josef K- Behind the Scenes Timelapse from Peter Woodbridge on Vimeo.

IMG-20170405-WA000320170403_220722Screenshot_20170307-071303

 

Research Exploring Mixed Reality & Augmented Reality Storytelling and Digital Placemaking in the City
Nov 2016 30

I recently began my PhD research journey exploring mixed reality storytelling and digital placemaking in the smart city, as part of an AHRC Funded Collaborative Doctoral Award with McCann Manchester, the Virtual Engineering Centre and the Centre for Architecture and Visual Arts at Liverpool University.

My focus is looking at how immersive media technologies (such as mixed reality (AR/VR), internet of things, locative media, sensors and data) can be used to create imaginative interactions between people and place.

My aim is to find ways to conceptualise and develop prototypes to make urban spaces, heritage and culture more playful, imaginative & emotive through the use of mixed reality experiences and storyworlds — which will hopefully be useful knowledge for future AR practioners, spacemakers, media artists, placemakers, place hackers and urban designers.

The Practice-based PhD also involves a number of other collaborations within Arts, Culture organisations mainly in Manchester and Liverpool. Including several heritage and culture projects that enable you to spatially interact with the past, present and future.

Virtual Reality Filmmaking : Life in 360 Degrees
Apr 2016 03

I’ve been out and about the last few weeks getting my head around virtual reality 360 degree filmmaking for a few upcoming projects that I am developing. As part of my testing I’ve made this short video, called Virtual (anthropo) Reality , whilst out and about on the Wirral over the weekend.

I’m really excited at the moment by the potential of virtual and augmented reality as a highly empathetic storytelling medium, as well as enabling us to embed stortelling into the physical world. There’s a number of research projects currently happening around the world that show how VR/AR can contribute to peoples emotional and embodied understanding of other peoples experiences so this has enormous potential for those involved in the media, campaigning and communications industries.

Stay tuned for more updates as I develop some projects, but in the meantime please enjoy this short video…

Virtual (Anthropo)Reality from Peter Woodbridge on Vimeo.