Friday, December 6, 2019

"Hand" a new virtual reality artwork by Bryn Oh

     Hand is now open to the public.  It was built for virtual reality using headsets such as the oculus rift or vive, but it can also be navigated by your computer.  Just a little side note ... do you remember when you first visited Second Life or another open ended virtual world?  How exciting and almost overwhelming it was?  For me I had never experienced anything like  it before, but over the years that excitement fades as you get used to it and you almost wish it could be fresh like that again.  Just to let you know, if you have not used virtual reality before it is similar.  It is new and strange and inspiring. Anyway just saying.

     So the first thing you need to do is install Sansar if you don't already have it. 
You can do that here...

Then you can find "hand" by searching for Bryn Oh and it should pop up or try this

Next see the ungainly red markings I put down?  They show where to click.

 Click the three dot icon
 Choose settings
 Then make a checkmark under VR for shadowed atmostpherics and ambient occlusion.  These settings are off by default but add some nice aesthetic effects I worked on if you click them. 

     I would also suggest, if you are new to using VR, to not run in this build.  Run makes me a wee bit queasy as its too fast and jarring,  walking is slow but much more comfortable to me.  Also you will need to jump so find that button.

     I am obligated to acknowledge the support of the Ontario Arts Council but I do so quite willingly, furthermore, I would like to explain why their support is so important to an artist in a fringe medium  such as myself.   This artwork has taken me almost a year to build and I will likely not generate any revenue from it unless it goes into a gallery or museum somewhere.  To undertake a project like this with potentially few prospects is, as you can imagine, unwise.  The financial support helps but perhaps what is even more important is the psychological support one feels to take on such a large project.  They believe in me which is so very encouraging.  In my life I have lots of friends and family who are completely indifferent to what I do as an artist.  They know I do some kind of computery art thing but some have never even once asked a question or shown any curiosity.  And that's fine, I don't want to actually talk about what I do to someone who doesn't care anyway.  I don't crave the glazed over eye look.  But imagine working so hard on something and then feeling like you are alone and nobody cares, it can be deflating and you question yourself and what you do.  Was I insane to abandon a successful oil painting career to jump into immersive virtual environment art.  Recognition and support from the OAC, for me, is something that reinvigorates my confidence and says to keep going and striving in this art medium that I truly believe in.  So I would like to thank again the OAC and the great work they do.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

"Hand" opening in Sansar


     This Friday December 6th will open "Hand" my new virtual reality artwork built in Linden Labs second virtual space called Sansar.  You can download the client here if you wish to visit my new work 
To find it on Friday just search for Bryn Oh and Hand will show up.

 I would like to acknowledge the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council without whose financial help I would not have been able to create Hand in Sansar.  As virtual spaces fluctuate, it becomes more difficult to financially commit to working in Second Life and Sansar.  As an oil painter I sell paintings in the virtual space there is not a whole lot to sell for revenue. Organizations such as the OAC who offer financial support and, to be honest, an open keen interest in virtual spaces as an art medium, they deserve credit for projects such as Hand as without them I really could not have spent a year working on it.  I believe that the virtual reality medium is a new art form
which, in my case, focuses on immersion.  Throughout art history many artists have striven to immerse the viewer in their sculpture, painting or even cinema.  They want you become lost in their artwork whether it be compositional methods such as the eyepath leading the viewer around a painting, to cinema where they turn off the lights, turn the sound up high with a screen large enough to reduce the peripheral vision distractions to a degree where the immersion is strongest.  They overwhelm or control your senses, then tell you a story which, if well written, will take the viewer away from the world for a while.  We had the Cubists, Impressionists, Surrealists, Modernists and I see our movement as the Immersivists.  I have believed in this idea a long time but now with virtual reality headsets such as Vive or Oculus rift the immersion is less fragile.  You don't look at a computer screen and beyond its borders see a bill that needs to be paid or your cell phone rings... instead you are in the world I have created and firmly there.  Unlike painting where you stand from a distance and look at a static scene or cinema where you are told a story as a passive observer,  virtual reality artwork can offer the ability to be an active participant in the art.  For example, if you watch a movie and see a space under a bed you can not break free of the camera to look under that bed, but with virtual reality it is open ended to such a degree that your freedom is only hampered by the ability of the artist to provide for you.  Looking under a bed in a VR space might find you something taped to the mattress.. but you only find it if you look.

     Hand is best experienced with a virtual reality headset, but Sansar also allows for traditional
navigation through the screen and if you have a fairly new computer you should have no problem exploring the artwork.  Hand is the story of a girl named Flutter who carries something precious in a suitcase.  You follow her story in the same world that my others characters inhabit, and some of these you will recognize furthering their story and place within the world I have been working on for over a decade. If you do try it using VR then please feel free to contact me and tell how the experience was as I would to hear what worked and also anything that didn't.  Also for VR,  click the three dots to the left of your screen, click settings and in graphics turn on shadowed atmospherics and ambient occlusion.  They are off by default.  Hope you enjoy!

Monday, December 2, 2019

Giclee print #4 Rabbicorn and daughter of gears

This is the fourth Giclee print being made available, it is of the Rabbicorn and Daughter of gears characters currently on my region Immersiva.

The Giclee prints are on Hahnemuehle cotton Photo Rag paper.  They are museum quality prints and rated with a 200+ years of fade resistance.  If you are interested in purchasing one send me an email for details