Tree

Interaction Design

Objective:

Create an interactive installation project with the theme of 'Interstice'.

This project is for school assignment purposes. In collaboration with 3 other students.

This is an interactive installation of a tree that seeks attention. When one walks towards or around it, the tree draws its branches in and out as if it is ‘calling out’ to the viewer. Its roots crawl beneath the grass, ‘speaking’ through sounds from nature when presence is felt; such as birds tweeting and crunching of leaves.

As natives of urbanity, we tend to overlook nature in motion because of their stillness and ordinarity. The tree, a representation of nature, reacts to an approaching viewer; showing eagerness to connect and bring us closer to those we often ignore. It is a bashful tree, its movement more prominent when approached from afar; smaller more minute when near. It is a static object ‘brought to life’ through human attributes, displaying modern communication tendencies by craving interaction but shuns away when confronted. Together with its miniature size, the tree evokes endearment and encourages viewers to reach out.

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The interface of the tree includes the grass patch with leaves specifically placed to guide the viewer to step on the Audio switches underneath and the make-believe tree facade to the mechanism. It classifies under valued users as (preferably) only a single person interacts with it at a time. However, the viewer is not responsible for all events, only the majority of the results are dependent on the viewer. Even without the user, the tree will be wiggling some branches to attract interest.

It is a parallel of real world experience as the feedback is in real time and place. The tangibility of the tree allows viewers to feel better connected with it while searching barefoot for its ‘tickle spots’ and being able to step into a transformed space. The interface has constant elements that provide continuity. Results are repetitive but in random sequences to create an open structure. The viewer is free to communicate however they like by walking, hopping, crawling, rolling etc on the grass to gain different combinations and discover how the tree will react.

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