My relationship with design and VR.

A glimpse into my mind and the dedication I have to VR and immersive mediums. I am a passionate and long term experienced art director that has seen many new technologies blossom over the years. I have experimented in most of them and have seen the triumphs and weaknesses of each along the way. I know that innovation is the key to maintain a high level of work, regardless of the medium and continual focus on understanding the psychology of the user and overall user experience is key.

In no medium has this been more important than virtual reality. By removing the user from a tangible setting and placing them in an environment of your own choosing, you have incapacitated them to being part of their usual environment. As a fair trade you must at least provide an on par or better experience in a format they can digest and, in the best cases contribute to in a way that empowers them. I use the opportunity to be hyper-creative, inventive and daring, and in doing so give users the opportunity to feel moments of freedom and ultimate fulfillment, to be immersed in a new world, to have the ability to interact, or be absorbed by a passive cinematic experience.

I understand that we are at the gateway of the most compelling and psychologically volatile medium of our time. Great care, but also joyous and unhindered experimentation is required to fully understand what is actually possible to convey in a VR experience. I want to give the user an interactive experience that reminds them that, even if they know the medium well there are always surprises around the corner, and not cheap jump-scare style surprises but “sense of wonder” surprises that make them once again re-calibrate their expectations and realise we are the forefront of a new frontier of learning and understanding. I don’t claim to know it all, but know enough to be dedicated to the journey, with enough resources to make it to the other side. I am willing to stick it out to solve the tough problems, to be creative and analytical and move forward with a talented team to bring this dream into reality.

My skills range from traditional UI to full-scale 3D production, texturing, lighting and animation. I am keen on short-run iterations using an agile format to maximise the effectiveness of my and my team members time, so we can focus on a shared and realistic goal to get each job done in a timely and efficient manner.

My track record to date is one of excessive attention to detail, in form, functionality and also financial effectiveness. I have studied design for over 20 years, including Visual Communication and many further studies in photography and photo manipulation, Video production and motion graphics, animation and compositing, audio mixing and mastering, project management, and game design. Few people have worked as consistently in such wide areas of the interactive design field at such high levels. My learning period is far from over and I will continue learning new skills throughout my life.

Please refer to my portfolio for some examples, and please ask for more samples in a specific area if you require as I have many more jobs in each area I cannot possibly show each and every one in a regular portfolio.

I am constantly researching new technologies and integrate them into my everyday practices wherever I perceive they will facilitate potential dramatic improvement. I try as much as I can, evaluate and then integrate the most effective ones. I have studied not only user interface in great detail, but user experience, in a real and practical format, understanding the difference between good judgment calls and proper user testing scenarios. Depending on the specificity of the user, the testing should be carried out to an equal level to maintain accurate results.

Of course, I have all the skills required as far as software is concerned. Full use of the Adobe Creative Suite and tools, all of which I have more than 15 years experience in, plus experience with wireframes and fast iteration mock-ups, to test level prototyping. While working in the web design field and then studying game design, I developed an understating of programming code in various situations. Complex code writing is my weakest point, and not a passion of mine, but I still understand the process quite well and can easily project manage the code implementation processes.

I understand the amazing artistic potential of the programming aspect of an experience, and the ability to marry the interface, art, experience and creative code together is what makes an art director role an honor and a privilege. At the end of the day, each project will have a different budget, time frame, and delivery requirement, and will be taken on a case by case basis. My focus would be to get the job done within time and budget with the bonus of delivery in a much higher quality than is expected by the client or the internal team. Thanks, Daish