Yesterday we looked at new and emerging markets in animation. One commenter, Mike Rauch of the Rauch Brothers, was just as excited as I was, and calls this paradigm shift in animation “as big a deal as Gutenberg’s printing press.”
I couldn’t agree more, Amid. A clearly new and fundamentally different avenue for storytelling is opening up. Some people write it off, citing projects that are all hype and no substance. There is plenty of that– old stuff painted up to look new and gimmicks with no real value. However, people with creativity and an open mind have a chance to help forge new paths.
We have to let go of the desire to create media that’s strictly meant for a passive audience. There will still be room for that, but interactivity is opening up brand new possibilities. That’s part of why I’m considering going back to school for a graduate degree in Interaction Design.
By actively engaging their audience through interaction, animation directors have the chance to make media that can connect more deeply with the audience through an immersive experience. The audience can become part of the story, moving it forward and perhaps even taking some role in guiding its development.
Interactive media also creates the opportunity for animators to tell bigger stories without having to produce a half hour TV show or a feature. The story can unfold across several media platforms, or through a combination of forms (writing, video, illustration).
I think this kind of storytelling will require interdisciplinary teams– information architects, graphic designers, programmers, animators, interaction designers, writers, sound designers, user experience designers, and so on. It’s going to take time to discover the possibilities. There will be lots of missteps. But this is something I think about almost every day and am really, really excited about. This is as big a deal as Gutenberg’s printing press.
This video has some interesting thoughts about new stories to tell: