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Wetlands – A web-based interactive ecosystem, poetically visualising living data and user interactions

Wetlands is a poetic data visualisation using Lucy’s own brainwaves in response to material stimulation as a tool to ‘inhabit’ the identity, translated as a digital landscape.

Developed in consultation with specialists in the field of neuroscience, a wearable headset was used to monitor electrical brain activity (EEG) and heart-rate through blood circulation (PPG), measuring stimulation levels of the individual interacting with different surfaces while in a closed-eye meditative state.

These data were compiled into an axis of stimulus and material qualities, through linear waves, graphs and cross-sections, which were then translated into a 3D landscape – a spectrum of colour, land contours and wave movement. We wanted to place emphasis on the audience’s response, allowing them to create influence and disruption to the piece, making the user experience feel as responsive and generative as possible.

Within the 360º digital space, their interactions disperse colour through the particles and trigger pool wave motions in correlation with the data, creating mini-ecosystems or tides. Continued interactions with the pools causes them to spread and ‘melt’ the landscape for a flooded effect, solely provided by the user, creating an ever-changing environment.

The landscape captures Lucy’s responses to a range of material textures, including glass, suede, acetate, slime, silicone rubber, sandpaper and silk, translating her brainwaves and other bodily data into high-points and valleys, rock pools of fluid and flurries of different coloured particles with varied surface area.

Wetlands intends to create conditions where it is of value to witness oneself as a data source, acting as a mirror or digital twin from a practitioner perspective for audience engagement.

The final result involves two levels of input, one from LHS and one from the user. 

This piece is a self-initiated project embodying the studio’s new identity and mission inspired by human presence, creating an adaptive algorithm that showcases our experimental approach.

Visit Wetlands | Project Page

Credits:
Concept, Direction and Production – Lucy Hardcastle Studio
Graphic Design & Direction – Oli East
Web Development – DxR Zone (Rifke Sadleir & Daniel Baragwanath)
Web Design – Jess Mae
WebGL Dev – Haxiomic / George Corney
Creative Consultant – Laura Vent
Animation & Sound Design -Thomas Rawle

 

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