Apr 20, 2016

Forced Perspective: How Liquid Cinema will Change Storytelling

The tools for immersive storytellers are getting easier thanks to talented creators who are bringing their software, hardware and content out of stealth mode. We're already using half a dozen different software programs to create VR video so heck...why not one more? At NAB 2016 in Vegas this week, by far the most interesting new tool I saw was at a booth in the back of the VR/AR Pavilion. Thomas Wallner of Deep Inc. has developed a software tool that essentially directs user attention in VR. It's called "forced perspective".  If you're like me, you've struggled as a storyteller to use audio cues, text and narration to try to get the viewer to look where you want them to look inside the sphere. At StoryUP, we literally put our stories through "clinical trials" to try to guess where the audience will look the most...then we adjust the shots if they're looking at the lights when they should be looking at the ground. With Liquid Cinema, there's no guessing. The storyteller and the viewer both have their hands on the wheel with forced perspective on cuts and gaze directed CG's. Thomas explains how it works.

There's some debate in storytelling circles about whether we should even be directing the viewer's attention but if you've ever watched a story where the "arc of attention" wasn't clear, you know how frustrating this is to the viewer. Right now, Liquid Cinema is a standalone tool but a gal can dream that one day it will be a plugin in our editors. For us, not having to bake in our CGs will be one less step in post. If you get a chance to watch Thomas' feature "Edge of Space" that he shot with Joergen Geerds, you can see Liquid Cinema in action. How might you use this new tool in your storytelling toolkit?

Liquid Cinema Changes Orientation at Cut Line