Desirable Future

01

CONTRIBUTION

Concept Art
Visual Design
Copywriting
Secondary Research

02

TOOLS

Photoshop
Illustrator
After Effects

03

PLACE

2nd place out of 432 challengers

04

DATE

June — August
2019
desirable future image

Designing and illustrating a desirable future for 2060 where excess CO2 can be improved through VR education about forestation.

Intro

Hosted by THU (Trojan Horse was a Unicorn), Desirable Future was an ArtStation Challenge held June to August 2019. THU 2019 is sponsored by Mercedes Benz, with Vera Schmidt, an Advanced User Experience Designer, and Alexander Mankowsky, a futurist, as part of the team of judges.

Over the course of 1.5 months, I researched online about VR and developed my concept art skills. I placed 2nd out of 432 people in the student category.

01

Challenge

In 2060, there is still too much CO2 in the air but can be fixed with forestation, algae cultivation, or slow agriculture. Design a world where technology, creativity and innovation join forces to create a future where our inner child would want to play in and have fun with others.
Read full prompt here.

02

Solution

Reduce CO2 by using what we already have - trees that absorb CO2.

Monitor the overall health of a forest using Tree Rings; build empathy for trees using emoticons and VR education.

desirable future image

Concept

Reduce CO2 through forest management. Monitor the overall health of a forest using Tree Rings.

desirable future info gif

Also,

Give the oppurtunity to children to understand the importance of forests by building empathy for trees using emoticons and VR education.

CONCEPT

Tree Rings

We can now monitor the health of a forest by placing a few Tree Rings throughout a forest. Unhealthy forests are more prone to forest fires and destruction, the use of Tree Rings could prevent these disasters by notifying us when the rings detect something wrong. These Tree Rings also increase CO2 absorption and oxygen production. The simple tree ring design came from not wanting to overwhelm nature with machinery, and nor did I want to make technology the focus over a nature scene.

SECONDARY RESEARCH

Why VR Education?

I was interested in learning more about VR as an educational tool, and what I found was really eye opening. There are 3 main advantages of VR education.

01

Interaction & Involvement

02

Understanding abstract concepts & complex subjects

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Creating Empathy

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SECONDARY RESEARCH

Emoticons

Emoticons light up the same parts of our brain when we see a human facial expression. An emotional bond can be created, making children care more about trees.

It's easier for people to understand emoticons and simple emotions than numbers that represent a state. For children, the health of a tree can be represented by 3 states: happy, neutral, sad (unhealthy). Based on this article and this finding.

SECONDARY RESEARCH

Human-Centered Spaces

Curves in architecture encourage movement, this space is round to encourage the user to move around and explore

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UN Sustainable Development Goals

During my research, I also found out that the United Nations actually has a plan for a desirable future. My artwork relates to 2 of their 17 goals:

GOAL

04

Quality Education

GOAL

15

Life on Land

UN Sustainable Development Goals

Process

I used a 3D model of a mobius strip, as well as photobashing and hand illustration techniques to achieve my final illustration. The challenge was to make the composition, lighting and rendering style to work together seamlessly.

desirable future process

Reflection

During the 2 months I spent researching and working on my illustration, I learned an incredible amount about VR education and greatly expanded my concept art skills. While it was interesting to come up with tree ring technology that doesn’t exist yet, it made me realize the importance of being environmentally conscious of what I'm designing. Concept art makes it easy to create cool new technologies, but in the real world how many resources, time, and money will it take to produce this product? How might we make VR education economically accessible to all kids? There are a lot of questions that are present, and I hope to keep broadening my knowledge about the world and think about the future impacts and results of my design choices.

Thank you to Miguel Gallardo, Annette Cheung, Yan Tymoshenko and Alex Honeywell for the feedback on my work.