January 15th-21st, 2018:

WHAT I DID THIS WEEK:

This week consisted of finalizing my draft, recording it in the sound room, updating my animatic, doing research on VR and immersiveness, and attending many workshops and meetings involving Chris Landreth.

Finalizing my draft was difficult because it made me find the fine line between too broad and too much detail in describing what I wanted to do for a project in 6400 this semester. I couldn’t go too in depth, because I didn’t have all the answers yet. But I couldn’t be so broad as to confuse the audience in understanding what I was even talking about proposing. Getting my final script completed allowed me to focus in on a research topic and have confidence in where my work is heading.

Recording my voice over of the draft in the sound room didn’t take long, just pacing correctly.

Updating my animatic involved adding more panels given the new changes to the draft, and then making all the space seem filled and not lagging. Once I start overlaying actual data and video recording over the drawings, it will become more finished.  

Doing research on VR and immersiveness helped me start to discover some answers along with adding more questions to this research project involving educational storytelling through VR. Maria has been emailing Abby and I some foundational articles she’s discovered on these topics, but I’ve also found some other ones (attached via the button links). These have showed me things on how Virtual Reality is being implemented into the classroom of all ages (K-12), how it teaches kids about travel and history, and how kids respond to different stories via books and entertainment.


Also, this past week we had many encounters with Chris Landreth. He ran a work shop for us during our 6400 class going over his process and procedure with facial capture. It enlightened me that if I want to continue in the field of animation, especially facial capture, I need to know more about the anatomy of the face and how it moves depending on different genders, race, speech, etc. It was extremely beneficial to learn, especially from an expert on the subject, who was kind enough to have a workshop with us at Ohio State.


APPROACH:

In approaching this week, I solidified my script and continued thinking about:  

  • What I want to accomplish and learn at OSU?

  • Then how do I go about explaining this verbally and visually

  • And then from that verbal explanation and visual representation, how do I balance it out in determining which is more valuable in a specific area of the Explainer Video? Does talking benefit more for this section, or can the visual explain it for itself?

  • What themes do I want to explore in future projects?

  • What mediums should I use to expand my skillset while also being beneficial to projects?

  • How does virtual reality use immersiveness to teach emotion and connection?

  • Will this help children understand the literature better by being submerged in it?

  • Will this medium invoke an emotional reaction of empathy?

  • And will this give strength to the medium of virtual reality being used in education for younger generations?

WHO WAS INVOLVED IN MY RESEARCH FINDINGS:

This week, my findings involved meeting with Abby to discuss our approach to this 6400 virtual reality/motion capture prototype project. We wanted to see what page we were on in a starting point of what we want to accomplish in our 10-weeks of this prototype.

Maria also aided us in sending us multiple links to videos and articles relating to our topic.

During the week, I was also influenced my Chris Landreth both during an animation workshop and a one-on-one session to discuss facial capture in animation. His conversation included his input on where facial capture is going, how he himself uses it, and where it fits into the field of animation and research.


WHEN/WHERE I CONDUCTED ALL OF THIS:

When/Where: My time researching this was mainly in class, but also outside of it. I spent most of my time at ACCAD doing so, along with time during the weekends. Specifically though I had a one-on-one session with Chris Landreth in the motion capture room as well as attending his workshop on the second floor of Sullivant Hall.


CHOICES MADE:

The biggest choice this week was determining how much information to put into the final paragraph of my script for the Explainer Video. Maria kept coming back to me with questions that were so obvious about my content and writing, but that I myself couldn’t see because I had been working on the draft so much. She helped me figure out that it was okay to explain what I wanted to do, but still show that I had questions. So I made the conscious decision to include those in my script, show some vulnerability, but also show confidence and hope in finalizing their answers at the end of this project.


RELEVANT SOURCES/INSPIRATIONS:

Specifically, in doing research on the prototype project, I found information on

  • Children’s Literature

  • Classroom VR skills

  • Google VR

  • Teacher’s approaches to VR in the classroom

  • Immersiveness

The articles showed me what teachers are doing within their classrooms to engage students into the learning process more, how people think and feel in immersive, technological environements, and where this technology succeeds and fails dependent upon the audience. These articles that I discovered helped me in deciding that using motion capture to do a performance for education and see how audience’s react and feel is valuable to the learning system of both education and technology.

Some of these articles are attached in the linked buttons above.

LIKELY NEXT STEPS:

From here I would like to continue to do research on immersiveness within virtual reality and how experiencing a (mocap) performance within it can change the way people perceive stories. This is going to take work in reading more articles that deal with how kids learn, why they are learning what they are, if immersiveness is more likely to work on them as a target audience or not, along with many other technology and reaction related questions. Also this requires Abby and I to go out and discuss things with groups involved in whatever children’s story we choose along with getting permissions and grants to help grow this area of study.

I also want to gain more technical knowledge within Unity and streaming into it for motion capture and virtual reality. Those are the two primary mediums being used for the Ruby Bridges project we want to do, so I need to understand the software more to get it working in our prototype.


What was the most difficult thing about the work this week?

The most difficult part is trying to explain your ideas to other people as well as talk about yourself. Discussing myself is a struggle, as it is for most people, because you have to find a happy medium in sounding sure of yourself without being egotistical. But also you want to show you have worth in the work that you’re making and discover how you got there.

Trying to explain my ideas to other people is also difficult. I’m not worried that they won’t understand what I am saying, but rather I am worried about if they can visually see what I see. Have the same vision for the work and see what I want to accomplish. Have the same excitement I do. And especially in such a professional environment, get support and help in carrying out those ideas to a finished production.


What was the most satisfying thing about the work this week?

Learning from Chris Landreth about facial animation was wonderful. His knowledge and careful practice for the past 3 decades really support his work and how much he’s grown. It is satisfying to see where he was and where he has gotten to, hoping I can one day be there as well.

This is my Explainer Video Draft 02 (animatic) attempt - showing progress.