Elsewhere in the Wood
Elsewhere in the Wood is a live-action, installation in miniatures that invites the audience to watch and interact with a world much smaller than our own. Inspired by Théâtre Optique d’Émile Reynaud, Elsewhere in the Wood takes place in three small physical boxes, occupied by Autumn, a 14-year-old girl, and the monsters she encounters. The project consists of Unreal Engine projections, the technique of pepper’s ghost, two motion captured actors, and physical interactive elements. Collaborating with three other team members, I take charge of 3D Design, Physical Interaction and Motion Capture Streaming for this project.
2017.10 - 2017.12
Motion Capture, Live Performance, Physical Installation, Mixed Reality
iKinema, Unreal Engine, Maya, MaxMSP, Cinema 4D, Arduino, madMapper
Is it possible to interact with miniatures and change story in real time? In this project, I am interested in breaking the fourth wall and inviting audience members to influence the narrative by interacting with the presented story. Inside this story, a teenage girl that suffers from depression finds herself lost in a mysterious wood. Obscure creatures block her way home. Audience are invited to help her out.
For character design, I use Maya to model the characters and then rig them with HumanIK before bringing to Unreal. I also use Cinema4D to render these images. Autumn is a slight, friendless, young, teenage girl. The Mourner is from the same land as Autumn, but has a ghostly appearance about him. The King is the ruler of these woods. He towers over Autumn by being double her size.
For world design, I create three different scenes of the wood with Maya and Unreal. They are Gatekeeper's Valley, Mourner's Moor and King's Grove. Here is how the story starts. We open on a forest scene, where the hues of greens and blues fill our scene. The canopy is so thick that it neither appears as day or night. The area is not completely familiar, however, as some obscurities are littered around. The world appears larger than usual, with mushrooms working as trees. We can tell from this already that we are not completely in the real world. In the center of a small clearing is a girl, AUTUMN (14). She wakes, slowly gathering her faculties, and begins scanning the environment around her. It is completely foreign to her...
There are three boxes with three different scenes. Depending on the audience's interaction in each box, the little girl may be forever trapped in one scene or move to the next one. Here is a diagram of the whole setup and how it works between hardware and software. Mocap room can be far away from the performance area because data are sent through Internet instead of cables.