Art Department Presents Work in Augmented Reality

Whitney Clum

Even homework looks appealing when it’s in 3D. A combined effort from the Graphic Design 1 class, C-TEL, and 712 Innovations demonstrated that despite its sci-fi sensibilities, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are no longer hopes for the future, they are technologies of the modern age.  

During a presentation in the Kansas room Jan. 31, the three parties collaborated to not only demonstrate their projects, but to show off the educational and industrial applications that fusing art and technology has.

Simply put, augmented reality is the combination of digital information and the real world, and is used for city planning or by big businesses to show customers how their products would look in their houses.

“You’ve seen Pokémon Go? That’s augmented reality,” said Professor Azyz Sharafy. “This is the first time I’m teaching [Augmented Reality], and I wanted to, you know, [have the] city to really catch up to it because I don’t see other department using it. So, we started with 712 Innovations and they’ve had some people who were actually doing [Virtual reality].”

Graphic design students each laid out the examples of augmented reality they had made in class. Each individual created a booklet that played a video on the phone screen when the phone passes over certain pictures or photographs centered around a topic of the artist’s choosing.

“The project was really fun. We could do anything we chose as long as it had a set number of pages, front and back, as long as it wasn’t vulgar,” said Rachel Ramos, senior art major. “The software was not what I would probably use…the limitation is when you share so everyone can see it, you can’t see it… at the end, it’s worth it.”

When not perusing through the student projects, observers were encouraged to experience the other examples of technology brought be C-TEL and 712 Innovations, which included headsets that could be used to explore and interact with a given landscape. In the sample brought to the university, people could paint and alter an artist’s rendition of the famous trench scene from the Wonder Woman movie when using the headset.

“The new generation of students who are coming in are exposed to this but we as teachers should be ready for that,” said Sharafy. “I’m very excited about that them doing the assignment, they did a good job of it.”