With some help from different colleagues from work who were willing to be part of my documentation, I was able to document some of the interactions:
I also continued to get some really great feedback. The thing I found in this setting was that everyone just wanted to play with it – they were all very curious to try different things and see what would happen. Everyone thought it would be great if it were bigger – taking up a whole wall. Or even if it could make different shapes or waves.
One the Scenic Designers, Ethan Brown, stayed around trying to find different ways to get different colors out of it for almost an hour. Just moving and trying different things. At his suggestion, we put a white board directly behind it to see if we could get some better color mixing to happen:
It’s not an exact replica – but you can see the difference. Both have they’re pluses and minuses – and it’s definitely something to look at for the future.
Everyone responded really well to be able to see the colors they were wearing being reflected in the piece. Initially, I wanted it to be only a light amber color. But using the Live Camera feed in MadMapper added more of a pixelated reflective nature to the piece that I enjoyed in testing on my own. I would like the alter/obscure the mirroring a bit more. I did find that this drew people in a bit more – they were fascinated by what was happening on the other side of the wall. And you could see when they developed a connection with it.
At one point, two of my friends hugged in front of the wall – Nina Alexander and Jerllin Cheng. It was one of the sweeter moments of interaction documentation that I really loved. Seeing more than one person interact with it was really wonderful. Throughout the process, people kept asking me what would happen when more than one person was in front of it – and I never really had an answer, or a goal in mind. And I think that’s okay – it was wonderful to see more than one person interacting with it evolve. For the most part, it caused more of the wall to light up – but in a lovely way. The way I arranged the pixels to be expressed, they mixed with each other – so you almost couldn’t tell which part was which person. It all mixed to become one. That, I really loved seeing. Seeing how the whole wall would light up when people connected. And you could see that the users enjoyed it as well.
Barbara Cokorinos – the Graduate Design Administrator – came up to interact with the wall. It was wonderful seeing her light up with it – and play with it.
All in all – everyone enjoyed interacting with the piece. I think when I set out to do this, I kept trying to make the interaction and reasoning too serious. Though there are deeper reasons as to why I chose to make a wall – the ultimate goal was to bring about better connection. And Joy is obvious a wonderful way to do that. I’m also happy because it seemed like everyone took something a little different from it. It’s been hard for me to pin down my thesis and real reasoning behind this piece for many reasons. But ultimately, I wanted to create something that people could imprint their own meaning onto. And I was happy to see that happening the more people interacted with it.
Here are some more of my favorite photos: