Pia Sophie Steinhardt

"The World is my Imagination"

Section MS3, Ariel Caine

Keywords: model-making, photogrammetry, materials, body

As a design student and practitioner, it is important to being able to continuously change your view point on a project to develop the most thought through solution to a given task. Developing different gazes is comparable to using different glasses. As the glassmakers in the old days were chanting "we have glasses for every occasion“, Virtual Reality goggles are the modern stereoscopes.

This project is combining photogrammetry and virtual reality (VR) whilst using the method of rescaling reality to establish a new approach that addresses the issue of escapism and relief from workload. I am using the combination of these two mediation techniques by building a work space environment of a student from the Royal College of Arts (RCA), to transport the person physically into a miniature reality.

This is to detach the student briefly from the surrounding of the college rather than continuously working on their projects stuck in unproductive rhythms without the right mindset. Whilst students have deadlines, they sometimes forget to zoom out and see the bigger picture and be able to generate great ideas. This makes the design process unnecessarily time consuming and inefficient.

The student is inserted into an augmented environment and forced to look at surfaces of objects with the detail of a fantastic new world. The user experiences at first a disorientation through the abstraction of distance or scale. Then starts exploring the VR by either observation or interaction and form a new perspective towards objects, textures or form itself to then realise the overall image of what environment they are situated in. Piecing things together is the escapism, that literally brings them back into their workflow and space in a more efficient and productive way.

Like so, students might even experience the exploration as therapeutic as it is not real enough to be there with any consequences. As Schopenhauer said “the cleverer I am at miniaturizing my world, the better I possess it.”