Drones and the VR Experience

The desire to present a simulation of genuine experience—verisimilitude—is at the heart of of the visual arts. During its nearly 200-year history photography has evolved ever closer to a simulacrum of human vision. From early efforts to create 3D experience, to the most recent head-mounted display (HMD) video virtual reality imaging, the desire to extend the illusion of reality within a mediated visual experience continues. With the availability, beginning in 2017, of drone-based VR cameras, the limits of the virtual reality experience were no longer bound to the earth. This website explores fifteen different use cases for drone-augmented virtual reality.

Pre-Digital Photography Portfolios

I’ve been working seriously in photograph since I was around 14, beginning with my high school yearbook, and going on to be the photo editor of my college daily, and then into a real-life career in photography and photography education.. These portfolios begin with my work documenting the protests of the 1960s, and continue through my year overseas (1968), and then to my experiences in Puerto Rico, Illinois, fatherhood, Haiti, old theatres, and other twists and turns of my camera’s direction,.

Student Projects – Created Under My Supervision

My “projects” classes at UNR use different pedagogic strategies. In some classes, particularly those in which media technology skills enhancement is paramount, each student creates a unique website while acquiring basic skills in reporting, narrative structure, and media creation. In more advanced classes student often work in teams to create a multimedia project with enhanced depth. A selection of these is presented here.

Las Vegas Then and Now – Morphing the Landscape

Originally done with a 2005 grant from Nevada Humanities and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, this project uses archival images, re-photography, and morphing videos to explore the “then and now” of some Las Vegas landmarks. Among the dozen sites chosen for the project were the iconic “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign, old Bonneville Street, and the Plaza Hotel.

TravelBlogs – A multimedia journal of places and experiences

This was my initial personal laboratory for experimental rich-media narrative forms. Includes: Fear and Loafing on the Mayan Riviera (finalist, SXSW competition, 2003), A Journey in Geological Time, Memory and Memorials; and The Best Pizza in the World.

All Around Nevada – Explore the Silver State in Virtual Reality

My project celebrating the beauty and history of the Silver State, “All Around Nevada,” won a Best in Competition award from the Broadcast Education Association in 2010. It currently features 147 different locations, all explored in virtual reality panoramas.

Virtual Wroxton Abbey – The Ancestral Home of the Lords North

The Virtual Wroxton Abbey was published as a CD-ROM by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Wroxton College in 2004. This virtual-reality exploration of a historically significant 17th-century home and estate in England won the Best of Festival Award from the Broadcast Education Association in 2005. At the time of its publication the project was among the most extensive such explorations ever created, with more than 80 interconnected virtual reality environments, plus hundreds of other images, audio, and video elements.

Voices from the Dawn – The Folklore of Ireland’s Ancient Monuments

Voices from the Dawn is my continuing research project, begun in 1978, and requiring a dozen summer fieldwork sessions in Ireland. The project explores the ancient monuments of Ireland in the context of their folklore and mythology. All media work is now completed, and when all the research and writing is finished the site will feature more than 100 different prehistoric monuments. The project won the “Award of Excellence” from the Broadcast Education Association in 2014, and was a featured presentation at the 2012 Museums and the Web conference.

Waiting for the Cars – Alfred A. Hart’s 3D Railroad Photography

Waiting for the Cars is a book of historical stereographs in 3-D anaglyph conversion from Alfred A. Hart’s stereographs documenting the 1863-1869 construction of the Central Pacific Railway from Sacrament, California to Promontory Summit, Utah. The book was co-authored with Nevada State Railroad Museum historian Wendell Huffman, published by NSRM in October, 2012. The 218 photographs are presented as the photographer intended them to be seen—in three dimensional depth. Included with the book are the 3D glasses that make the images accessible.