Look Mum! I'm a Multimodal Designer!


So I'm a few months into routinely planning my projects using Making Sense - and as a result - I find myself successfully folding my interests and passions for multimodal design into new and broader professional contexts; my newfound framing as a Systems Creative is now well and truly in full swing. The first project to emerge that uses the recently finalised Making Sense toolkit is a new experimental multimodal project called Hzwatches - a production strand that features a series of audiovisual studies and references that explore the relationship between sound and motion graphics. This new project strand is giving me the opportunity to fuse/unify the fundamentals of both sound production and visual composition through a transdisciplinary design workflow (Hello Josef Albers, Meet Richard Williams! Oi Wassily Kandinsky, have you met Laban?)


...and as the video collection grows with each additional 'Hzwatch' this library of studies is beginning to serve as a very useful theoretical reference that will help guide my various audiovisual endeavours and projects in the future. And this is not at all incidental - given that through the planning process this project was identified as an opportunity for me to establish a regular exercise routine in this field ('audiovisual yoga' if you will) that will serve as my effort to get methodologically match-fit for new ambitious forms of AV production. And this first organic practical experience using Making Sense (outside of the trials earlier in 2020) has been really nice! Through an intra-active mindset I've identified the role that Hzwatches can play within the wider system of my professional practice - and every time I pick it up and add to the library of audiovisual studies and loops, I'm reminded of exactly why it's valuable to me, and I'm reminded that it will have a dramatic impact on many of my future projects that will be influenced by the discoveries made through this new production strand. Fast forward a few weeks and I've since found myself planning another project using my cards - this time as part of a new R&D funding bid.


Through this second distinct planning process, I've begun to broaden the modal channels within my practice as a creative producer by looking beyond both the modes I'm familiar with as well as the contexts in which I typically work - and I've found myself directing this ambition towards a wonderful (R&D) opportunity called Open Source.

Established by Justin Teddy Cliffe, Open Source is looking to provide creative practitioners with a unique COVID-sensitive opportunity to define, explore, and test fresh ideas and processes within the arena of "new-digital-theatre". Inspired by this, and equipped with my current drive to normalise/consolidate multimodal thinking and design within the arts, I decided to submit a proposal that would allow me to return to the lab and explore how the haptic mode (i.e. our sense of touch) can augment theatrical experience and storytelling, and even present new access channels for wider audiences. <.../images/ms_opensource.jpg> ...and to do this, I intend to turn to one of the more interesting emergent technologies that has entered the market in this field - the Woojer Haptic vest:


So there we have it! 2 new distinct project opportunities have emerged through 2 distinct Making Sense ideation sessions. I look forward to sharing updates about each of these projects in due course (the latter of which naturally subject to the condition that my application for the funding is successful!) ...of which, you can read a one-sheet digest of my proposal here.

...and even if it's not successful, not only will there be lots of Hzwatches to share here in the coming months, I'm certain that more opportunities will emerge for me to draw upon Making Sense and seek further opportunities to think about creativity and experience design with a much wider bandwidth of modal broadcast to draw upon and experiment with.


Copyright © Leigh Davies 2020