Embracing project-driven teamwork, students, faculty and professionals endeavor to creatively solve challenges, develop new user experiences, delve into mixed realities, produce drones-based commercials, create new media content and products that enable graduates to thrive in an environment of change. Digital media production project courses, the program’s backbone, promote interdisciplinary collaboration designed to broaden experience, skills, and interests.
PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE PROJECTS
Virtual Productions and Unreal Engine (Spring 22 project) - With the growing demand for virtual TV and film productions, it will be an essential skill for anyone wanting to enter the entertainment industy to have working knowledge of how virtual filmmaking works. This project will introduce students to what a virtual production is, how to use Unreal Engine and other programs used in virtual productions, and will also give them basic skills for producing content within the programs.
DIY CNC Router (Spring 22 project) - Students will dive into “maker” mode to build and improve a CNC router. Then they will prototype and build everything from guitar bodies to battle axes. They’ll build our own CNC machine and then can use the machine to create designs or to make parts for their own CNC Router.
Introduction to Motion Capture - Students were introduced to the different methods and processes of motion capture for animation through a variety of tools and software. Students filmed actions and transferred them to an animated character to be inserted into a live-action short film. The basics of virtual productions were also introduced using the latest version of Unreal Engine and Aximmetry.
Online Market for Niche Products - student created online boutiques and generate niche product ideas and prototypes.
Augmented Reality - An introduction to the process of creating content for augmented reality. Students learned how to create both 2d and 3d assets and turn them into functional, animated AR content for mobile devices. Tools like Adobe Aero and Apple Reality Composer were used in addition to software like Adobe Illustrator and After Effects.
Video Game Design - In the desktop version of the game, players navigate a character to the safe zone in a post apocalyptic world after exploration leaves them stranded. After solving the first of many puzzles, players meet No#a, a military-grade AI with answers that help to players navigate trouble, find adventure and reach Sanctuary. The team created, worked, debated and refined the game concept. The goal is to publish and market the game.
iOS App Development - Students and Faculty dug into the use of Apple's Swift coding language and Xcode, Apple’s app development software, to create a functional HSU app and help build our knowledge base for future digital media production projects.
Absorbed: Enter Porifera - A virtual reality biology experience that explores a Mesoamerican reef and sea sponge anatomy. IM student teams continue to develop and refine the reef experience and function in Unity. This experience will include a fly-through a sponge with a college-level quiz on sponge anatomy.
Virtual Reality Green Screen Cube - IM students worked to create a modular system for a green screen studio cube for mixed reality content. Project students experimented with materials and technologies such as 3D printing to create an easy-to-reconfigure system. Once built, students explored various uses for compositing virtual reality with video using our set up.
Green Screen Studio - A physical, hands-on project that resulted in the design and construction of a small green screen studio room within the digital media production building. This included framing walls, building a cyclorama, painting, and lighting the studio. This was an evolution of the green screen cube project.
Virtual Campus Tour - Students experimented with a variety of tools, including both 360° and DSLR cameras, and software to begin the creation of a virtual campus tour of the HSU campus.
Drone-shot HSU Commercial - Students partnered with Henderson Television to script, storyboard, film and edit a commercial for HSU that relied primarily on video shot with a drone.
Future IM Facilities Design- This was a project to visualize a future digital media production facility. The creation of renders of the space as textures, lighting, and furnishings were added. Since this was proposed, funding for a Fine Arts and Digital Media Production Center (combined) has changed what will be constructed. Although the building designed in the project will not be built, the visualization is an example of design work digital media production students and faculty create. Ultimately, this model was being installed in a game engine to allow viewers to navigate through the proposed building on the web.
Ongoing Digital Media Production Projects - Production and post-production of the faculty-led nature documentary "Saving America's Bats," Podcasting in partnership with KSWH 102.9 FM, Extra Life Charity Telethons in support of Arkansas Children's Hospital, Reddie eSports Streaming and Podcasting, Faculty Creative Projects including work on the award-winning documentary short film "The Man From Boggy Creek" that included signifcant student contributions.
CURRENT AND PAST INDEPENDENT STUDIES
Innovative Media Twitch Channel - Digital media production's Twitch channel, featuring students streaming live content from Ramsauer House. The independent study's goal was for the channel to reach Twitch's Affilated status by the end of the Spring 2022 semester. This was goal achieved in February '22 and a new goal to create a tutorial about Twitch streaming for future students was added to the project. An additional element of the Independent Study was to create an active Discord community to work in conjunction with the Twitch channel.
Ramsauer Sessions – Digital media production's version of Tiny Desktop Concerts. Music jams set in the Ramsauer House (digital media production facility) living room filmed for the digital media production Youtube Channel. Five bands or musical groups are slated to perform.
The Natural Skate Podcast - A podcast about Arkansas’s rich history of skateboarding. The project is a way to reach out to the rest of the world, help skaters connect with the plethora of groups around the state and share stories by interesting individuals. Eight professional-level episodes featuring skaters from around the state will be produced and will also feature interviews with skaters from diverse communities and groups.
VR Art Experience - An immersive virtual reality experience designed to teach viewers about Russian Constructivist and Bauhaus-related sculpture. The experience will include interactive navigation, and historical content.
Autonome Kunst - An immersive, interactive pop up video art exhibit built with analog video hardware. The exhibit, inspired by the work of artist Nam June Paik and the band Kraftwerk, featured vintage cathode ray tube TVs and projections of analog video art acompanied by an audio soundscape.