01: Senior Studio Capstone Proposal

Capstone Proposal:

Interactive warble computing, Asia-pop inspired, cyber renaissance themed, experience. Exploring where the future of fashion/music/technology intersect.

Dance is a form of storytelling, fashion a form of expression and music a form of self expression. If technology is added to the fold, the lines between these three begins to blur and a new industry begins to develop: One where self expression is told by what we dress in, that can change instantaneously, giving the ability to change ones story, in a newly expressive manor, normally restricted by previously unchangeable physical limitations. As our society enters the third industrial revolution and computing nears science fiction potential, so will the ways in which we interact in much the same manor social media changed how we communicated and with whom. One such example is Apple's Apple Watch; a fashion statement, a music receiver & player, a bio-metric gathering device of warble computing technology, delivering a new untapped experience. But why limit ourselves to the known physical devices when we can integrate these into the very clothing we wear on our backs.

The hopeful end result of this one year capstone project will aid in illustrating this new industry & be added to the fold of next-generation fashion-esc dance inspired technological assisted warbles the first-world will undoubtably consume in the near future.

Fashion inspiration:

Video game examples show from Deus Ex: Human Revolution with their "Cyber Renaissance" fashion design. From left to right:
Zhao, Megan, Eliza_final, Eliza_poster-concept.

K-Pop and Mando-Pop examples shown. From left to right:
K-Pop group: Girl's Day in music video "Female President", K-Pop group: Rainbow, singer, Jaekyung, K-Pop group: Kan Mi Youn in music video "Wont Meet You", Mando-Pop group: Jolin Tsai in music video "The Great Artist"


Interactive fashion/music video inspiration:

Using projection-mapping:
Japanese pop music group Perfume preforming "Spending all my time". These projections are carefully timed to choreographed human factors so it appears as if the dresses themselves are giving off the light. With sewable electronics, we might be able to near this gap ever closer.

LEDs and electroluminescent strips/panels:
Japanese pop music group Perfume preforming "Spring of life".  Seen here is LEDs and electroluminescent straps sown into dresses and likely powered via the cords behind the singers due to power requirements at the time. 


Implementation of next generation capstone example:


Possible concepts to be implemented during this time:

  1. Adafruit Flora powered wearable computing microprocessor that is detachable, enabling undergarment to be hand-washed.
  2. Unisex undergarment that can integrate with designer-brand fashion and still provide capstone intent of diffused lighting or straps.
  3. Only adding NeoPixels, electroluminescent wire, tape and panels, sensors and conductive thread that can be hand-washed or is encapsulated within a waterproof protective shell or is easily detachable.
  4. Wirelessly transmitted data to additional Adafruit Gemma’s that can be attached to accessories such as heels or earrings that will sync with Flora.
  5. Natural gesture input for control of Flora by means of Circular Soft Potentiometer or intelligently programmed algorithms that use predictive behavioral adapting statements by means of medical based sensors such as the e-Health Sensor Platform or Bitalino Freestyle.
  6. Midi/synth harmonics controlled by imbedded sensors that sound like music when active, not a jumble of noise.
  7. Full scale mannequin to inspect 3D construct of undergarment(s) and human factors.
  8. Possible internet integration via WiFi Breakout with Onboard Ceramic Antenna that can uplink to external services (e.g. someone tweets “That #UArtsFashion dress is fascinating” during the showing and the dress can illuminate the users name, etc)

Possible pre-release deliverables for advisors, pre final design(s) showcasing:

  1. Bi-weekly or once monthly internal website (my portfolio, open to public viewing) postings showcasing progress made, concepts developed and code constructed; be it text, video, photo, code-samples. E.g. recording my process, each comprised of a single page such as this one.
  2. Full scale mannequin to inspect fashion design human factors and gain a better illustration of it's real world usage.
  3. Showcasing advisor chosen design(s) for UArts open house for public viewing, in person. Being present to answer any questions regarding the design(s).
  4. Giving advisor permission to barrow any of my designs to showcase in UArts gallery space or external gallery space, so long as said borrowed work does not impact progress to be made e.g. taking early prototypes vs items being worked on currently.

Possible release deliverables for final design(s) showcasing:

  1. Live showcasing of final design(s) at opening reception with paid model(s) showing work, with myself present for any comments or questions. Will attempt to schedule during a high art traffic month e.g. Design Philadelphia.
  2. Full scale mannequin(s) with design(s) for in-person viewing in UArts gallery space and external gallery space for a length set by advisors and external gallery curators. Possibility to make it permanently viewable artwork on campus or external.
  3. Publicly viewable design documentation with source code used in design(s) online only.
  4. Full color 11" x 17" print or digital photography (for prospective student admissions promotional usage, etc) of select design works or phases to be displayed external of DAAT Studio on UArts campus and UArts website (I will still retain permission of said media at all times).

Needs from university:

  1. Mixed media technology/design advisor (DAAT)
  2. Computer science advisor (External?)
  3. Fibers and materials advisor (FIBR)
  4. Dance and human factors advisor (DANC/IDES)
  5. Unrestricted access to an electric powered sowing machine (5th floor Terra, Anderson fibers dept)
  6. Unrestricted access to 3D printing (5th floor Terra)
  7. Static studio workspace for a period of no less than two academic school semesters (DAAT Studio)

Short term goals to learn during the capstone period:

  • Strengthen my Java/C+/Arduino programming vocabulary and logic computational skills.
  • Learn to build in 3D space and adapt for human factors movement.
  • Better familiarize myself of the world of warble fibers and fashion design so as to possibility enter these sectors post-graduation or graduate school.
  • Deconstruct what it is exactly that makes something sexy or tempting, and how this can translate into a greater experience when seen by others (k-pop) e.g. making the mundane into something greater e.g. the majority of fashion is just a remix of past ideas.
  • Strengthen skills from entry-level/prototyping to advanced/polished-world ready.
  • Develop social presentation soft-skills so my work can be showcased in studios, not merely online as in the past.
  • Booster GitHub portfolio for future employers to view code written.

Long term goals to have attained post-capstone:

  • Improve my secondary language skills that have direct relation to inspiration gathered as a helpful precursor to my possible move to Asia post-graduation.
  • Learn the history of fashion and South Korean and Japanese pop music scene.
  • Develop ability to construct fashion clothing or remix said clothing far in advance of what it once was.

Examples of possible concepts to be developed during capstone period:

Martin Grant designed a set of stunning and interestingly contrasted clothing for Australian airliner Qantas.
As the thumbnail/video below shows.

This design however is impractical in a utilitarian sense, beyond brand recognition. With the addition of wearable computing we can give added use to this fashion, without taking away it's original look:

South Korean pop music group 4Minute music video of "Love Tension" vs live performance:
The motion graphics seen in the below video are clearly post-production and not live. They add shape and dimension to the dancer's choreography, while also giving a more pleasing user experience when accompanied by the song. This video has roughly 7 million views and 4Minute is one of the most widely known girl bands in K-Pop. 

While it may seem a non-issue for any live performance of "Love Tension", given the strength of the song and popularity of the K-Pop group, the live performance is otherwise underwhelming at best and simply amateur at worst; especially given the fact that one of the singers in 4Minute, Hyuna, was in PSY's "Gangnam Style" with over 2 billion online views, the most viewed K-Pop music video to date. This thusly has a negative effect on 4Minute as a brand.

Thus comes the question of what can be done to rectify this, when using the first video as a reference point of inspiration? Deconstructing a portion of the music video timed with the live action, showing a before and after:


These are just a few examples of near many possibilities. The project can either go dystopian or utopian, utilitarian or aesthetic. But perhaps most exciting is blending these differences, as shown in the examples, into one seamless work of design, art & technology; that is my major after-all.