The Concept Update:
- My individual concept is an interactive carpet used for colour mixing and open ended interaction with colours and animated objects. It has animated characters to be coloured in using pressure sensor gloves that are colour coded. It will incorporate physical movement activity by walking around on the carpet with a Kinect to detect and input the child’s physical position. The physical position data will be used to obstruct the animated character’s movement.
Over the break
- I worked on PhysComp Prototype documentation and Thesis work. For PhysComp I created the prototype documentation plan to serve as a guide as I started to develop the physical form of the prototype. The concept overview and background/ related work were more refined. Using the critique from my Individual section, it said I needed more specific related work to support my work and the direction I have decided to take on the group project. In my last entry I included previous concepts developed for children using colours. One concept used building blocks as colour indicators to guide a train movement/ animation. The blocks a representational of using gloves in my concept. I thought gloves would be a novel way of using hands and mimicking the action of finger painting.
- Interaction Plan was where I had the most challenge defining because I could map together the interaction between glove and screen. At the moment the concept just appears to be a large tough screen mat, not novel enough or specific enough to the type of interaction I am striving for. I just want the interaction to be purposeful, meaningful, helpful for a specific group of people. Little children. It is not seeming interactive enough. I drew this skeletal/ mind map to guide the details of the interaction plan.
- Over the break I did three interviews over Zoom. It was conducted a little different because of the target audience. I interviewed parents with children 4-6 (participants children were ages 4 and 5) to get there experience of their child being creative as well as their perspective on creativity in children and what that looks like for them. Because of the constraints of having to be home, working from home, and having their children home during the pandemic, it was tricky to schedule a full time to conduct interviews as I normally would in a physical setting. To alleviate some of the time spent on a call for the interview, I sent the questions ahead to participants to brief them on the direction of the interview. Calls were kept to a maximum of 10 mins again to consider the busyness of each household. From the interviews I found there was pretty much a general consensus that creativity refers to making or coming up with something that is unique and original. Each parent also spoke directly about art work in reference to their child’s creativity mostly painting and colouring in activities.
- I was also able to conduct observations three observations of children. The observation was done over Zoom platform. Each child was presented with two options; a blank paper to create their own drawing or colouring, and a paper with an exisiting art work on it like a cartoon character they are familiar with from Starwars, My Little Pony, and LOL dolls. These options were presented to observe if there is a preference of the child, whether they would like to create or come up with their own or do they have more fun working from an existing idea to create and express their own interpretations through colours. It was unanimous, all children chose to colour in from an existing artwork. To peer this finding with interview responses, parents did also indicate that their child plays longer with colouring because they had an existing interest in the drawing on the paper. One parent said her son would colour in for up to 30mins uninterrupted when he is colouring Starwars characters because he watches that cartoon version on television all the time.
Review of Activities and how they align with concept direction
- A big part of expressing themselves creatively is freedom to express their interpretation of an image, or story according to the research conducted in literature reviews. I found that even though the main idea of the concept I am working on is introducing colour theory to young children, a big part of allowing creative freedom is facilitate place and space for physical movement as it is said to boost creativity. In the observations I observed 2/3 children got up from colouring and started to pretend to be the characters they were colouring in. One child went and put on an entire Hulk costume then went back to complete colouring in. On another occasion he went and put Darth Vader. It was really fun to have this observation and see the playfulness of the child in this unstructured open-ended interaction. In my design I will now try to find a way include other aspects besides colouring in for them to be playful and interactive.
Main task for the next week:
* Develop the Unity Scene. More specifically, create a vibrant colourful scene similar to what can be scene in a colouring book. I will focus on building the main character and background characters that will be interactive in the scene.
* I want to configure a program to incorporate the use gloves in the scene. I will get those and the corresponding dyes from target.
- Concerns about completing:
* Finding specific assets in the Unity Asset store. For example I would like to base the interaction off the bob the builder cartoon character in the scene. It would be good to get that or something like it to make the interaction more interesting for children.
* I am also concerned about sourcing or representing a large screen as a carpet but, I have an alternative in mind for this.