Online virtual museum in collaboration with the artist Bink.
The bink cafe is a virtual museum where every month a new collaborative exhibition is organized. The artist Bink invites artist with different backgrounds working from various disciplines. What they all have in common is that they have a passionate story to tell.
Visit bink.cafe to experience the museum for yourself. Click on the door to go inside the cafe. By holding down you mouse button and moving your mouse you can look around. Click on the ground to move to that position. Click on people, radios and paintings for special interactions. Press F (or the cat) to enter fullscreen (and escape to exit fullscreen).
Bink already had the idea of a virtual museum in her head for some time before she came to me. At our first meeting she brought this sketches of what she would like to accomplish.
One of the main things we wanted to figure out for this project was how to make it easy for her to change the placement of artworks without needing to learn Unity. It would also have been a hassle to have to build and upload the Unity project every time we wanted to make a new expo.
In the end we decided to work with a json file which described where all the artworks where hanging, what everybody was saying, which radio made what sound, how many floors the lighthouse has and much more. Changes in the file could almost instantly be seen in the experience itself, creating a very fast feedback loop.
Another important goal we had was to keep everything in the experience in Bink’s own drawing style. For the final look we used multiple techniques to achieve the final look. Like the inverted hull technique for the stairs and the bar. The other lines on the walls come from a texture. 2D billboards for the objects and most of the characters. And a special kind of billboard for Bonk (see image to the right).
My own expo
I was the first artist who could show their work in the virtual museum. The exhibition was temporary but here are some screenshots from when it was still online.
Bink Cafe Expo with NO FISH | 20 April 2021 – 31 May 2021
An online virtual museum where the architecture is ever changing, giving a new context to the art on display.
MuseumArnhemVR.nl is a virtual experience I worked in for Museum Arnhem. I was responsible for technical and interactive side of this project. I also worked on the building and environment and realizing the visual style of the experience. The virtual museum can be enjoyed from your browser (in the window below) or at the museum itself from a virtual reality headset. The surfaces of the architecture in the museum are always changing based on where your mouse is. The patterns and textures are inspired by riso print.
Visit museumarnhemvr.nl to experience it for yourself. You can look around by holding down you mouse button and moving your mouse. Click on the ground and you will move to that position.
For this project we had to figure out how we would animate the patterns on the walls and floors. Eventually we used simple black and white animation frames which got picked randomly and recolored with colors from two color palettes.
To save space, the animation frames for the buildings where combined in single textures (one per building). By color coding them they can easily be read by a custom shader. They where also tiled so even more frames could fit in a singe (square) texture.
The final combined textures have the extra benefit of looking very nice. 😀
Custom shaders where very important for this project. They where used for ‘animating’ the patterns, but they where also used to get the style we wanted. We were inspired by riso prints and the way they use noise to create gradients (see left).
In the experience we used the custom shaders to combine (baked) lighting, patterns and noise to create surfaces which look interesting from far away as well as from close by.