On the Spot
VR theatre | Embodied Interaction experience that immerses viewers in the world of the infamous crime photographer Weegee
Academic Research Project
Supported by the International Center of Photography in NY
My Role & Tools Used
Research & Design
Game Design, Prototyping & Development (Unity 3D with SteamVR, C#)
3D Generalist (Photogrammetry, 3Ds Max, SketchUp)
Video Production (After Effects, Premiere Pro)
Co-created with Jack Hardiker
Arthur Fellig, known by his pseudonym Weegee, haunted the crime and fatality scenes of Manhattan to capture a darker side of New York through the lens of his Speed Graphic camera.
This was an entirely new photographic genre. These were scenes never previously shot or published.
What we created
The non-linear VR experience adds the third dimension to the iconic picture taken by Weegee, obtained from archival records of the International Center of Photography.
The participant gets to step inside Weegee’s dark world of crime scene photography in 1939 New York to explore the case of a murder of gangster David “The Beetle” Beadle.
Sneak peek of the work-in-progress prototype.
We were able to find the exact location where the photograph was taken, and using archival maps and Google Street view, I recreated the precise topology of the intersection. See location.
The work blurs the boundaries between real and virtual through tracking the virtual photo-scanned body to a real human that can be touched and moved as well as thanks to real actors filmed and placed in the experience.
Originally, Weegee used to adjust the position of the bodies he photographed to get a better shot. In our experience, the user is invited to do the same. Through that, we aimed to measure the sensation of embodiment in participants.