Chris Milk is an accomplished visual artist who has created music videos for Kanye West, Arcade Fire, Beck, U2, Jack White, Johnny Cash and many others. He is also the founder of Vrse and Vrse Works, companies that produce content for virtual reality. Chris talks about the discovery and the rising popularity of virtual reality or VR, its mass adoption, the challenges it currently faces as well as its capabilities.
- Widening the consumer base is a top priority.VR can (and will) be a revolutionary platform for gaming and entertainment, but we've been seeing firsthand just how far the medium can reach. We now have the power to traverse great distances in no time at all and walk a mile in another man's shoes. Virtual Reality has the power to transform how people feel about one another. How can VR continue to reshape journalism and news? How can VR affect education and learning? Every new revolutionary technology, be it the cell phone or the laptop, is pushed to the limits by humanity. How do we use this thing in a way where our lives are greatly improved? VR is no different. 2016 will see the continued push to explore how VR can transform existing modes of communication, bring people closer together, and make our lives more streamlined.
- Next, creating great content.I think we are entering a period of rapid experimentation and exploration. I think over the course of the next year we'll see a lot more narrative exploration in VR. Storytellers are already retraining their brains to think in 360 degrees, and so many great VR experiences already exist. I believe that great storytellers can tell a great story using anything. As more and more companies and studios invest in VR, we're going to see some really great narrative experiments. We're still at the infancy of this new art form. It took cinema decades to invent the close-up. Even longer to invent the match-cut. So on and so forth. As technology grows more widespread and the creation of VR experiences becomes democratized, we are going to hear from new voices.
- The simplest way we arrive at compelling content in VR is to imagine what would be compelling to experience in real life.
In a lot of ways, VR is the closest we've come to inventing a teleportation device. You can take anyone from anywhere and transport them into moments, experiences, and stories. VR can eliminate the proximity between people, places and things in a way that I have not seen done before. It's helpful to think about what kind of character you want your audience to interact with, and how you'll want the audience to remember them. That's really what the storytelling goal should be: to create memories. Once you've got that in mind, you can reverse engineer everything else. We're going to start seeing stories that take us to faraway and impossible locations, and stories that blur the lines between our world and and the virtual one.