Categories
Interactive Art Physical Tangible Media

Symbiotic Skin

Symbiotic Skin is an interactive experiential work that asks audiences to consider a future where humankind can no longer breathe independently, having adapted to this evolutionary shift by forming lifelong bonds with creatures entitled ‘symbiotes’. This previously unknown species attach themselves to the human body across the chest, creating a symbiotic bond allowing both human and creature to breathe as one.

In Symbiotic Skin, audiences are presented with an opportunity to experience this speculative future, by coupling with a creature and taking a mediated walk through a green space. The creature extends across an individual’s body and facilitates exploration of the environment through subtle vibrations and illumination, which permeate from the creature.

This work seeks to draw attention to current and ongoing sustainability issues, as well as providing audiences with a unique lens in which to view and interact with natural environments.

Project Details

Name: Symbiotic Skin

Year: 2018

Materials: pine, MDF, bolts, nuts, mouldable plastic, fabric, rattan cane, springs, elastic, wires

Hardware: LEDs, vibration motors, speakers, Linzerschnitte microcontroller, SD cards, MP3 modules

Categories
Interactive Art Physical Visual Communication

Crystalis

Crystalis is a collection of three crystalline forms, taking shape as an interactive sculpture. This project explores traditional print media, namely monoplate or block printing, by applying this millennia-old technique to an output only possible with modern technologies – laser cutting. It is through this exploration of contrasting processes that Crystalis evidences that digital and traditional media can coalesce to result in rich, exciting new possibilities.  

The project was developed in three stages, beginning with the design of patterns in Adobe Illustrator, with each pattern taking inspiration from different iconic patterns seen throughout history, including those from Celtic, Chinese and Native American cultures.

Once finalised, these patterns were laser cut into acrylic sheets, which were then processed as monoplates, following a traditional block printing process. Ink was applied to the plate and then run through a press, transferring ink to sheets sheets of translucent paper.

The final stage involved fabricating the crystalline forms, which were cut from acrylic and assembled using a combination of adhesive and folding, where the acrylic is heated along a seam and folded in place, harding once it cools. The translucent paper, including the printed patterns was adhered to the newly formed crystals. Once complete, each crystal was embedded with an LED and connected to a motion-sensor, which triggers the crystals to blink in a ‘breathing’ pattern when someone moves their hand over them.

The resulting outcome is a delicate, ambient interactive sculpture that responds to movement with a soft and warm ‘breath’ effect, almost like the crystals have their own heartbeat.

Project Details

Name: Crystalis

Year: 2013

Materials: translucent paper, block ink, acrylic, MDF, wire

Software: Adobe Illustrator

Hardware: LEDs, PIR motion sensor, Arduino Uno

Categories
Digital Information Design User Experience Visual Communication

Asbestos, Absent

Asbestos, Absent is a series of infographics that tell a story about how mesothelioma, a cancer commonly associated with asbestos exposure, has impacted the lives of Australians. The series was presented digitally on The Cube, designed specifically to resonate with the target demographic, which predominantly comprised of QUT staff and students.

The project was designed to be read sequentially, with the first design encompassing a map-style infographic. This map details the total number of recorded mesothelioma diagnoses in the two decades from 1980-2000, and translates this figure using an average adult height. When layed across a map, the total distance of these human bodies stretched the distance from the QUT Kelvin Grove campus to Gardens Point campus, and back. A bleak image to picture, but an important message that hopes to raise further awareness of this horrible disease.

The second infographic employs a unique twist on the traditional bar graph and contrasts the 2011 figures of those who were exposed to asbestos in both workplace and non-workplace settings. The main message of this design draws attention to ongoing exposure risks faced in the construction industry as well as highlighting a little-known fact – that spouses of workers were exposed to asbestos simply because they washed their clothing in the same machine.

The final infographic in this series is a set of timelines, contrasting three individuals who were diagnosed with mesothelioma. These timelines were developed from qualitative data, such as news articles and interviews. These reports were examined, where I sought out patterns and commonalities in their stories. The resulting design gives a glimpse into the lives of these three individuals, emphasising the extreme variety in latency between exposure to asbestos fibres and eventually experiencing symptoms of mesothelioma. My hope with this design was to emphasise how important awareness is of the danger asbestos poses.

This project was developed through a combination of data processing in Microsoft Excel, while design was completed in Adobe Illustrator. I hope the outcomes resonate with you and that you find the story told through the work to be both informative and meaningful.

Project Details

Name: Asbestos, Absent

Year: 2013

Software: Adobe Illustrator, Microsoft Excel, Tableau

Awards/accolades

Exhibited publicly on The Cube, QUT.

Categories
Branding Digital Visual Communication

INVENTory Posters

This project responded to a brief for the now defunct INVENTory space, within the QLD Museum, which called for a rebrand to engage new audiences with all that the space had to offer. The INVENTory was a versatile, collaborative space that included a rotating program of interactive, family-friendly activities that were themed around current exhibitions from within the QLD Museum. The project called for a strong, versatile brand identity, which was to be applied to three posters.

My approach to this project was highly experimental, as I sought to convey an aesthetic that captured the audience’s imagination, while encouraging creative expression. The series of posters is comprised of collaged, treated images and evokes a hypercolour, psychedelic sense of style.

The icons at the centre of each image are designed to change, depending on the current program of events taking place within the INVENTory space, which reflects the need for versatility in the design outcomes.

Project Details

Name: INVENTory Posters

Year: 2013

Software: Adobe Photoshop & Illustrator

Hardware: Canon 500D DSLR

Categories
Physical Tangible Media User Experience

Cause & Effect

Cause & Effect is a data-driven piece of tangible media, which allows users to better understand the detrimental health impact of smoking on the human body. 

This project involves a tangible user interface that takes the form of a stuffed toy doll, covered in a series of touch-sensitive buttons (the black spots), which is connected to computer. Users are encouraged to hold the doll while they navigate the interface, which responds to button-presses by playing a short video about the impact of smoking on the body part associated with the location of the button pressed on the doll. Each button is softly illuminated, and when pressed, this light switches off and slowly illuminates as the video plays – giving feedback to the user and reflecting a metaphor of degradation of the associated area of the body.

In creating this project, we sought to provide people with a novel way to physically engage with a serious topic matter and gain new insight and understanding into an issue that impacts millions of people, worldwide.

Collaboration with Lincoln Savage

Project Details

Name: Cause & Effect

Year: 2013

Materials: fabric, conductive paint, MDF, black paint, wire, rare earth magnets

Software: Adobe After Effects & Premiere Pro (for videos)

Hardware: LEDs, hall effect sensor, Arduino Uno, external laptop (variable)

Categories
Interactive Art Physical Tangible Media

Trail of Traits

Trail of Traits seeks to encourage exploration of urban spaces through whimsy and problem-solving with ambient interactive media. This project was specifically designed for exhibition at the 2013 Ars Electronica Festival, held in Linz, Austria.

The project takes shape as a collection of four interactive discovery boxes which lead participants on a trail throughout a given city or event. These boxes sense the presence of those passing by, and chime, in order to capture audience attention. When opened, these boxes illuminate to reveal a riddle, which must be solved to find the next box along the journey. This novel take on a scavenger hunt spans across various cultural landmarks around the installation site. The boxes are coated with patterns which compliment their given location, whilst interior patterns are an additional clue to the next location that is part of the trail. The trail has no beginning or end point – users will simply stumble across one of these boxes and their adventure will commence!

A key aim of this project was to help tourists uncover exciting cultural aspects of a city, while also providing locals with an opportunity to experience their city in new and novel ways.

Collaboration with Alice Brown

Installed within the U19 exhibition @ Ars Electronica Festival
Installed within the Bienenstock project @ Ars Electronica Festival
Installed within the Ars Electronica Centre @ Ars Electronica Festival
Installed within Tabakfabrik Linz @ Ars Electronica Festival

Project Details

Name: Trail of Traits

Year: 2013

Materials: acrylic, rare earth magnets, screws, wire, vinyl adhesive paper, bells

Software: Adobe Illustrator

Hardware: LEDs, PIR motion sensor, hall effect sensor, servo motor, Arduino Uno

Awards/accolades

First exhibited publicly in the Ars Electronica Festival, the world’s premiere event for public, electronic and interactive art in Linz, Austria, 2013.

Exhibited in the 2014 iteration of SHAPE of Things to Come at QUT, Brisbane, Australia.

Categories
Information Design Physical

Aurora & Arc

Aurora and Arc is a physical data visualisation that draws attention to the disparity in treatment of LGBTQIA+ citizens across the major states and  territories of Australia. 

Aluminium rods intersect with two halves of a circle– a universal metaphor for a ‘whole’. The length of each rod from where they meet the raised arc is representative of how long it was punishable by life imprisonment to be in a same-sex relationship – one inch equals a decade. Some rods also include small holes cut into the underside, which indicates states or territories that still don’t allow legal adoption for same-sex couples.

This project is a companion piece to Division & Dusk, developed as an extension of that project to further unpack LGBTQIA+ issues, while contextualising the subject matter to a local, Australian setting.

The above legend can be used to read and interpret the data that informs the sculpture.

Project Details

Name: Aurora & Arc

Year: 2015

Materials: acrylic, aluminium rods, aluminium sheet, screws

Hardware: LEDs

Awards/accolades

Exhibited publicly in ReForm: Art in Public Spaces as part of the Brisbane Street Art Festival in Brisbane, 2017.

Finalist in the inaugural exhibition of the Contemporary Art Awards, exhibited online in 2015.

Categories
Information Design Interactive Art Physical

Division & Dusk

This project responded to a brief asking for a physical data visualisation informed by qualitative data that made a strong case for its own physicality. This criteria was met in Division & Dusk through the inclusion of light as a material. The tripod component of the sculpture includes embedded LEDs that casts light through the central, suspended form (named Division). This light casts shadow across surrounding surfaces, where the holes and wire elements of Division entwine and intersect, resulting in the Dusk element of the work.

The above legend can be used to read and interpret the data that informs the sculpture.

Project Details

Name: Division & Dusk

Year: 2015

Materials: acrylic, aluminium rods, screws, chain, wire

Hardware: LEDs, Arduino Uno

Awards/accolades

Exhibited publicly in ReForm: Art in Public Spaces as part of the Brisbane Street Art Festival in Brisbane, 2017.

Categories
Interactive Art Physical Tangible Media

Planets

Planets is a participatory, performance-based interactive artwork, which explores connections between people, places and objects. The work comprises of 30 interactive orbs, designed to respond via proximity to a central ‘master orb’, which is held by a contemporary dance performer while they move through a large crowd. Planets was designed to appropriate and activate event crowds and debuted within a crowd of over 1500 patrons at the 2014 Ars Electronica Festival in Linz, Austria.

This work responded to the challenge of repurposing technology designed for a singular function and reimagining it in new and exciting ways. The technology in question, the Linzerschnitte microcontroller, is a low-cost FM receiver that can output a small current to control small electronic applications. The Linzerschnitte is at the heart of this project as it facilitates the relationship between performer and audience.

While Planets functions independently as a performative work, it is also the result of a pratice-based research project. This research investigated the concept of ‘exclusive experiences’ within interactive artworks, which can be understood as experiences that are transient, ephemeral and independent to a moment in time.

Collaboration with Michael Smith

Project Details

Name: Planets

Year: 2014

Materials: thermoplastic, acrylic, silicone, thermochromic pigment, coloured pigments, glow pigments, bolts, nuts, wires

Hardware: LEDs, Linzerschnitte microcontroller, vibration motors

Awards/accolades

First exhibited publicly in the Ars Electronica Festival, the world’s premiere event for public, electronic and interactive art in Linz, Austria, 2014.

Finalist in the 2015 Sunshine Coast New Media Art Prize (now retired)

Jury Selection in the 2015 Japan Media Arts Festival