Friday, December 7, 2018

Jane and Eloise opening Saturday December 8th.


My new artwork Jane and Eloise will be opening tomorrow, Saturday December 8th.  Here is the slurlhttp://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Immersiva/16/103/22

So what to say about this new work.  I wanted to play with the idea of what art can be in the virtual space.  I have mentioned before how this medium has unique traits that differ from more traditional ones such as painting, sculpture or cinema.   In the virtual space we are not passive observers to the artwork.  In a museum or theatre we stand back and look at a painting or sculpture, we don't touch
them nor interact usually, while in the theatre the movie tells us a story and we sit and listen.  We follow the camera where it leads us and should we wish to open a door or look under a bed.. well that is not part of the experience.   We are passive observers to the artwork.  In virtual spaces we can be active participants who interact and are part of the work itself.

     With this work I wanted to have a short narrative within an artistic environment focusing on colour, line and form but also creating a gamification of the artwork itself.  The story revolves around two sisters who go out fishing together.  They are caught in a storm and their canoe collapses.  The maze is a symbolic recreation of the nightmares that get embedded within our mind after a traumatic experience.  The maze is the mind of Eloise.  Now with a traditional artwork  you can then step back and say observe and contemplate!  For this work you enter the mind of Eloise and navigate a fairly scary maze trying to find the exit.  If you find the exit you get a different ending then should you never find it.  The maze will be fun to do with friends.  It is designed to rebuild itself every hour randomly so that nobody can memorize the pattern.  Once you have put on advanced lighting with shadows (directions at the start) you will find
yourself in a dark space with just a flashlight.  I would suggest using first person view, as I find it easier.  Along the way you might find, what I call, mouse holes.  The mouse holes are thin doorways that only a single avatar can squeeze through into another hallway, if a monster is coming you can slip through and they can not follow, but if you are with friends then there might be some frantic pushing and screaming as the monster approaches :)  The maze can be scary and cause some anxiety, in tests I have watched people who find mouse holes and linger by them afraid to go further out into the maze.  Also inside the maze are three "safe rooms" where the monsters cant go and you can see scenes to the story.  Inside these safe rooms your headlamp will turn off allowing you see the room in its proper lighting and also making it hard to see the corridors you just left.  I would strongly suggest taking off your facelight should you wear one as it will impact the shadows in each scene.  I love to compose with shadows so really hate when they are washed out with a facelight.  Something else to consider is to use run.. which is ctrl and R to activate.
    At the front of the maze is a gacha machine where you can get all the parts of Jane and Eloise should you like to own some.  This build took three months to create due to the really complex scripting, which I don't mind, except that it means three months of paying tier with no income from visitors.  If you could leave a small donation that will go a long way to keeping Immersiva around.
     So what else... the scripting.  This work required that a whole new set of scripting was built because other forms would not work with it.  For example, pathfinding is a great way to have a monster navigate a maze, except when a maze randomly rebuilds itself.  In pathfinding the monster would need to know where each wall is, and then it could move through them.. when you make a new maze every hour the pathfinding creature cant see those new walls.  So a new type of movement had to be created where the creatures would "see" the maze as they move while also looking for people to chase.  There are two types of creatures, the toothy nightmare which fills the hallway.. if you see him coming you should turn and run as you cant slip by him.  The other, perhaps more terrifying creature is hook Jane.  She floats down the hallways and will quickly and aggressively chase you. If you see her then try running for a mouse hole  and I would suggest praying as you do.  It is actually too crazy to get into the details of the scripting involved but let me tell you it is deceptively elaborate and very good on lag.  Might actually do another post just on all of that.  Ok I am blathering on, please come visit and have fun.

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