“Notch allowed me the opportunity to unite our artwork and the audience.”
Capturing attention is a challenge for any exhibitor at the worlds largest AV exhibition ISE. London based experiential agency Crucial FX created the ‘Epson Vortex’ to pull visitors into a whirlwind of delightful, interactive content projected by 16 of Epson’s 15,000lm lasers.
Crucial FX create unique experiences for live events, product launches, interactive gaming and permanent installations. Creative Director Mark Rivkin and Designer Kamal Alsaady used Notch’s real-time technology to create the Vortex.
Mark envisaged a design that showcased the vibrancy and brightness of Epson’s projectors as well as acting as a landmark at the enormous conference: “Our goal was to create an experience that looked great from the outside, and was fully immersive from the inside too.”
Kamal imagined attendees becoming a part of the design. A combination of interactive sensors and custom audio would create a unique environment in which movement could directly alter the content. “I wanted the heavily AV based audience to step out of a technical inspection mindset and just enjoy being a part of the moment.”
Starting with a blank page and a head full of ideas, the Crucial FX team began developing Vortex. “Notch was the ideal tool for this project due to the complex graphical requirements.” Working from mood boards, Kamal brought the designs to life using a range of particle systems, cloners, fields, Post-FX and modifier nodes.
The team were able to use Notch and disguise’s VR capabilities to pre-visualise the content from within the tunnel. Kamal: “Notch gave me the freedom to develop and build upon designs visually both during pre-visualisation and in full-scale rehearsals. I simply connected to the media server and made real-time adjustments to polish and perfect the content.”
The installation had to be reactive to multiple attendees making their way through the tunnel at once. A combination of multiple depth cameras and Lidar sensors were used to gather positional data. Ventuz was used to manage the interactive sensors, with custom software built by Crucial FX, which then fed into Notch using OSC. Each block ran at 60FPS at all times to ensure real-time interactivity. Using the profiler, Kamal was able to pinpoint nodes and optimise their performance to meet the 60FPS requirements.
Voted the Best ISE Stand Demo by rAVe, The Vortex was a landmark installation. Over 15,000 AV specialists entered the tunnel during the event. Post-event, Crucial’s design featured on the front cover of InAVate Magazine.
Kamal: “Notch allowed me the opportunity to unite our artwork and the audience. We challenged expectations, turning what most would assume to be a rendered video loop into a fully interactive and unique art installation.”