With Sayuri Okayama, I would like to thank Novaby for doing such a great job in creating the 3D version of Bubiko. The version on display is a work in progress, and already the reception has been very positive.Thank you Novaby!
Stephen Black: This post is a breakdown of my experiences with AR/VR/Spatial Computing. It starts with 2002, though I received a BFA in Photographic Illustration from the Rochester Institute of Technology well before that.
Before 2002, I lived in Tokyo, Manhattan, Paris and Hong Kong, and worked in network TV, fine arts, photography and music. A fuller biography can be found here. But AR is the topic of this post...
2002-2007. In Singapore I worked as a creative director for a 3D game making company that was also doing something like Youtube,-- but three years before Youtube. Although I was not a developer, I learned a great deal about spatial computing, and taught 3D gamemaking in Singapore, including classes at the Singapore Science Center. It was during this time, that David Severn and I developed the Secret Donut World characters.
2007- 2014 Singapore/Bali: wrote novels, including a bestseller, was involved with 3how and researched VR and AR.
2014 SPOKEN, with Eugene Soh; a curation of a wide range of artists.
2014 The Oculus signaled the emergence of VR, and I began notes for a book about VR cinematography.
2015 In Singapore, a chance meeting with Ender Jiang, the founder of Hiverlab, resulted in the opportunity to make my first 360 film. Ender provided me with technical support and creative freedom and I am extremely grateful for that opportunity. The resulting film, Beach Road, featured a soundtrack by Bani Haykal and Chen Yi Qi, and was selected as a demo VR film in the Hybrid Arcade session of the Brisbane Asia Pacific Film Festival in November 2015, and was nominated as the Best Experimental VR Film in the VR Fest Las Vegas 2016. It was also fetured in a VR film festival at the Singapore national Museum. Beach Road was receiving a healthy number of views and comments before a technical change in Google Play took it off. At the time of this writing, Beach Road is on Veer and has received almost 5000 views.
2016 The year began with discussing a VR startup idea with VCs in Singapore. Though the discussions went well, the lack of a prototype slowed things down. Shortly after, the release of ARCore and ARKit resulted in a halt to VR the possibilities of AR were assessed.
By April, AR had become the focus and the decision was made to become the "Pixar of AR": original characters, stories and software. With Sayuri Okayama, Bubiko Foodtour was originated.
2018 A presentation about AR was given at Sasin School of Business in Bangkok, later followed by two presentations and two workshops at Hong Kong PolyU, all at 80% capacity or higher.
2018Lotus Mountain, a 360 film was shot and post production began including VR art contributions from Scobot and a soundtrack by Rei Shimizu. The film is at least 80% done and finishing funds are now being searched for. Lotus Mountain was supported by Kando, and 8K Obsidians were used for most of the shooting. Noted Chinese VR filmmaker Leo Wei co-directed and produced.
Bubiko at the Rise festival in HK
Hong Kong Comicon
2018 Cross-promotional and development partnership with Six Cats Studios (HK), focusing on their original IPs, Ollie and Charlie.
2018 Presentations in Shenzhen, including Le Wagon and Tech Crunch Shenzhen.
Question: would you support a book about the Old West Side?
As you know, the Old West Side is a historical community full of distinctive architecture. Well... I have written a bestselling book about another historical community full of distinctive architecture.
That book is entitled i ate tiong bahru. It is one of my eight books. You can learn more about those books, and i ate tiong bahru, here. I should also mention Bus Stopping, a book of photographs.
Those books were written and self-published, mainly while I was living in Bali. To write about the Old West End would require time, and that means money. Do you think there could enough support for crowdfunding or other forms of support?
Also, any ideas on unusual exhibition spaces? I have a series of prints combine photography with text, and would like to present them to the public.
Thank you for your time and suggestions.
This is a collection of posts about Toledo: 419ness.
Happy to talk to anyone about video, photography, writing and AR.
A free download of the Artivive app. This should go on a mobile phone or tablet. Either Android or iOs will work.
A copy of the 2019 Ohio Bicycle Events calendar. If you do not have a printed copy, you can get the same effect by pointing your phone or tablet at this image, featuring "Tour Legs", an artwork by Sassan Filsoof.
To see the AR in action, simply point your phone at the image above or the cover of the printed Ohio Bicycle Events Calendar.
Please note: This project was self-initiated and NOT endorsed by the Ohio Bicycle Event Calendar nor the Ohio Bicycle Federation.
The Ohio Bicycle Events Calendar can be found here.
Thanks to David Black, the rider.
Information on my presentation at the Great Ohio Bike adventure can be found here.
If you are interested in how AR can improve bike safety, click here.
I googled "humor in gamemaking". Not a lot of posts, and most were not new. It seems no one shares my dream of 25 million Fortnite players laughing so hard they shoot milk through their noses. Or spaghetti.
There are games that are obviously flat-out comedies, like the Borderlands series. Other titles, like Left 4 Dead, feature constant quipping by characters, and by movie standards could easily be described as comedic. But looking at games you'll notice that, by their very nature, they are comedic. Even ultra-serious dramas can become comedic by virtue of allowing you, the player, to do things that go against their style...
Hello! An update... and a request for support. I know the world is a goofy place and that a film is a luxury, in many ways. But I am now, with a great team, making a short 360VR film. The setting is the city of Shenzhen, the Silicon Valley of China. The film is about a couple, one of whom is a robot, but the film is ultimately about relationships.
Additionally, we are also in postproduction for a documentary on the city of Shenzhen itself.
Your help would make these two projects the best that they can be. We documented Shenzhen for 24 hours on August 18th. The documentation actually started on the 17th, which was Chinese Valentine's Day. That inspired the second short film, called Lotus Mountain.
I will write and do some Facebook Live broadcasts soon. If there were more time, I would do a crowdfunding campaign.
Stephen Black holding a Qoocam 360VR camera at the 2018 Maker Faire in Hong Kong.
Leo Wei, on the left, demonstrating a Kandao camera at Hong Kong Polytechnic
But we discovered the deadline for the Sundance Film Festival is this month, as is the deadline for a major European VR festival.
We are looking for sponsors and perhaps there is a way to sell it later. VR is a frontier, and there is no way to predict what will happen. For what it is worth, my first VR film was shown at festivals in Brisbane, Las Vegas and Singapore.
If you would like to support, the easiest action with the most value is to buy one of my books, probably i ate tiong bahru. It is a bestseller in Singapore.The paperback version is 17.88, and the ebook and audiobook versions are less than that. If you want to support more, please send me a private message. If you have a company that has a product that could appear in the movie, I am very happy to talk about that as well. Thank you very much for reading this!
At the 2018 Maker Faire at Hong Kong Polytechnic
Stephen Black holding a Qoocam 360VR camera at the 2018 Maker Faire at HK PolyU.
In the next post I will write about the great production, music, art and acting talents who are involved.
Oh yes... Beach Road, my first VR film, was a co-production with Hiverlab that has been featured in VR film festivals in Las Vegas, Singapore and Brisbane.
Yesterday I went to a fintech event with my feet dragging; expecting to drop off some flyers and then leave. However, I stayed for five hours, to the point where I almost missed a historic art event!
I stayed for two reasons.
As I began to take in the exhibits and meet people, I began to feel that I was witnessing a watershed moment in financial history. Learning about the achievements that were showcased, I sensed that the digital revolution has now advanced into an area that was considered to be an impenetrable fortress: the interaction between government regulators, financial institutions and SMEs. The fewer difficult and time-consuming transactions SMEs have, the better their chances are for survival. SMEs are what makes the world go round! This event was for everyone, actually, not zillion dollar companies.
The second reason I stayed was that, simply, everyone I met seemed to be genuinely trying to help others. There was a good feeling at the event.
I learned many things about how the delays and complications associated with starting and/or operating an SME are being reduced. My small way of thanking these unsung heroes is to list them below. These people and companies should be celebrated for their perseverance, attention to detail and their accomplishments.