Martians with Mustaches is an installation exploring transmedial storytelling experiences using an edited version of the 1938 The War of the Worlds radio broadcast as the base story.This show is a culmination of the work done by students in DTC 354- Digital storytelling taught by Dr. John Barber.
One Night Only!
October 30th @ Kiggin's Theater
Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the (in)famous radio broadcast.
Live reenactment by The Willamette Radio Workshop
of the original 1938 "The War of the Worlds" radio broadcast
Doors open at 6:30pm
We will kick things off with a costume contest.
Transmedia storytelling seeks to use specific features and affordances of multiple digital media/technologies to make storytelling more immersive and interactive. Usually, a transmedia story begins with a "base story." Specific media are then selected from their ability to tell some part of the story in ways not possible in more traditional storytelling. For example, if a story involves a number of brief narrative sequences, the transmedia storyteller might utilize some form of social media as the vehicle for posting these sequences to multiple readers/participants.
Students first edited a recording of the original 1938 The War of the Worlds radio broadcast to 10-minutes or less based on their individual interpretations of the narrative. Then, they identified various forms of digital media whose particular affordances could promote an expanded context for their narratives. Students designed and developed content for their selected media and sought to use these media so to elaborate the telling of their stories, while maintaining an overarching conceptual narrative framework true to the original.
What are the results? One project provides an opportunity to read famous astronomer Professor Pierson's notes. Another proposes the alien invasion was real. The fictional radio show was designed as a cover up. Another suggests aliens are among us, disguised with moustaches. All have great fun with the original story.
Each project, although based in a website, extends outward and involves opportunities for reader participation and immersion in the transmedia experience. These links lead to the student projects. You can see how they responded to these challenges and you can interact fully with their narratives. Enjoy!
With this project, I wanted to experiment with and make connections between the original 60 minute Orson Welles radio broadcast version of the War of the Worlds, a printed copy of the original story by H.G. Wells with illustrations by Joe Mugnaini, and videos that would convey meaning to 30 second sound tracks such as scenes from the 1953 War of the Worlds movie, Ray Harryhausen’s martian test footage, and animations created by individuals motivated by the story. Putting these elements together, I was inspired by the idea that there are questions emerging concerning what we expect from traditional print reading and how modern technology may be transforming these expectations- resulting in an altered experience for the reader. This project represents an exploration of this idea, and uses an Augmented Reality platform to modify the readers experience using audio and video. More
Morgan Hutchinson is a recent graduate of the Creative Media and Digital Culture program at WSUV. After exploring various multi-media platforms introduced to her through CMDC and drawing from her travel and life experiences, she would like to continue to develop digital works of art while also continuing to study digital technology as it impacts and stimulates our culture’s definition of communication, art, and literature. Show Less
“Peirson's Notes” is a reinterpretation of the story presented in the 1938 radio broadcast of H. G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds.” It is a transmedia experience that allows the audience to follow, in real time, the journey of the main character, Professor Peirson. His account of the events will be relayed through various media as he gains or loses access to them, meaning the experience of following the narrative changes as the story unfolds. The audience will have to jump between Twitter, blog posts, and a real life scavenger hunt to find all pieces of the story and put them together. The format and related activities are designed to make the audience feel as though they are experiencing their own version of the story, not passively as observers but actively as fellow survivors. More
Important Note: In order to access installments or episodes of this story as they are released, audience members will need a mobile device with a barcode scanner application and the ability to be in downtown Vancouver, Washington. For those members of the audience who do not have such a device or are located far enough away from Vancouver to make frequent trips impractical, installments will be unlocked after a reasonable period of time.Show Less
This project is an exploration of creative media storytelling in a digital age. Through the use of online gaming, website development, musical remixing, and audio editing I've created a unique way in which people can experience and enjoy the classic broadcast War of the Worlds, by Orson Welles. With alien conspiracy theories rampant on the internet, I was excited to do my part to contribute one more, often overlooked, alien cover-up. Grover's Mill deserves to have their story heard and I've decided to tell it. This is War of the Worlds Revisited.
When approaching the idea of digital storytelling I didn’t know what to initially expect. Digital technologies are becoming so integrated into our lives that every experience is supplemented with some technology. The experience however is still free to move between technologies with no real change in how the user engages with the content. The goal of this project was to step out of the idea of passive storytelling and into a place where the medium the story is presented on is just as important as the story itself.. More
War of the Worlds was a perfect choice to set out to accomplish this goal. It’s a piece that I’m familiar with and felt comfortable manipulating to achieve a purpose. Initially dozens of ideas came to mind and I wanted to use the physical world combined with the digital world in a way that the user could have a multisensory experience. The seemingly boundless attachment of cell phone users and their devices became an inspiration for the project and I sought out to take advantage of this. I came up with a story that could be experienced through sight, sound and through the physical interaction of user and mobile device. When the three experiences come together the total story could be achieved, engaging the user in the War of the Worlds reality.
The reality follows the story of the Martian invasion of Earth beginning in 1938 and the first reactions of hostility and fear of the humans. It follows different perspectives of the takeover through short pieces that progress chronologically through the original work. The story then turns to the human acceptance of the invasion realizing the possibilities the Martians present in bettering the world and the human population. The story ends with a message from the newly cohabiting Martians and their goal for humanity.
I was inspired by Marshal McLuhan’s notion of the “medium is the message.” There are certain aspects of every technology that are unique to that technology. For instance, a big part of my story goal was to take advantage of the intimacy of one on one interaction a user has with a mobile device. It pulls the users focus and integrates them in the story. McLuhan would note that this personal experience could only be achieved through the use of the mobile device. I also integrated Aurasma augmented reality into my software so that the mobile device becomes a gateway of experiencing a deeper digital story. As the use of Aurasma progressed, early 20th century propaganda posters and early comic book art in aesthetics influenced me. The bold colors combined with simple lines and minimalist images allowed for Aurasma to be fully explored. Augmented reality allows for something to be changed and expanded by a mobile device. It adds another level of information that gives the reader a new way of visually interacting with their world. My project fits into the larger context of previous augmented reality works by combining the use of image manipulation with additional story elements. Each of my posters corresponds to a moment in the audio story and with the use of Aurasma it achieves full user participation.
Augmented reality and the creation of it was new for me. Previously I didn’t know that the effect could be achieved so simply and create such startlingly fluid results. I began with the skills I have in graphic design and made use of Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to create the posters, or trigger images, and the overlay images that appear in the Aurasma viewport. Aurasma offers a unique tool for storytellers and at a small learning curve to allow anyone to begin to develop stories that can be told across the platform. Using it as a tool to create a comic book pop art effect gives a new possibility to the way we experience visual images. Imagine whole comic books that can be experienced in multiple ways through augmented reality. In the future the technology may allow real time manipulation of the overlay so that it becomes even more interactive and responsive to human interference. As part of my project I also included a social aspect. Expanding the story into its real effect on social media. Creating a relevant YouTube search feed on my website the, videos become additional information on the subject to the story. The world becomes part of the experience. Using social media as a tool allows existing content to take on a new context and become part of something new.
My initial vision was sweeping, large and detailed and as I began to create the different parts of the project I found some ideas I felt attached too didn’t fit with the project and required replacing or to be let go all together. I also discovered many different tools that made the project better and helped establish continuity with the story of my base audio. I found myself organizing the project as though I was writing a movie. I had multiple story boards and sketches of ideas and I found myself ordering and reordering them till they established a cohesive link. I created numerous checklists and enjoyed the satisfaction of accomplishing the individual parts of the project.
I hoped to achieve a cohesive story of Martian and human cohabitation on this earth that made use of mobile technology to fully immerse the audience in the story. I hoped to achieve a product that engaged the audience and elicited wide eyes of interest and I hoped to get people more interested in the technologies that I used. Augmented reality will become a great story telling tool in the future and anything to get people thinking of new and creative ways to get people interested are fantastic. The power of a transmedia piece is that each piece can stand on its own and is enhanced by the other parts to make a larger story.
Since the creation of this piece I have expanded my knowledge of augmented reality and it has become a big part of my education. In September 2013 I was named the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance University Fellow for Washington State University Vancouver. I have established a student team that is creating a mobile gallery built entirely around the benefits of augmented reality. This incredible opportunity is also the inspiration for many other ideas including an augmented reality platform of my own design currently in development. I’ve been floored by the power of the technology and the opportunities that have arisen because of one project. This piece marks the beginning of a long road of entrepreneurship for me and my ability to manipulate a powerful technology that I hope becomes a key component in the future technology market.Show Less