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Live Room (SIGN)

Year | 2021
Location | Yorkshire, UK / Virtual
Client | Screen Industries Growth Network (SIGN)

Summary:

During the six week Live Project period, the Live Room Project group have worked in collaboration with the Screen Industries Growth Network (SIGN). SIGN is a research and advocacy network which works within the Yorkshire and Humber region. The region is a hub for the TV, film and gaming industries which collectively have seen employment increase by 116% between 2015 – 2018. In comparison to a national 11% average increase, the rich wealth of opportunities presented by the regions “screen industries” is significant.

Despite the growth and development of such a creative and varied industry, there are significant challenges which it faces. The issue highlighted in this brief was the lack of opportunity which the screen industry can offer to those starting out in the field. A large number of jobs in the film industry have roots in the ‘Production Assistant’ role. This is an entry level job, which most high level directors or managers will have performed at the beginning of their career. Despite this, there are a number of barriers which prevent people from getting their foot in the door via this role. These barriers are grouped into accessibility, diversity and inclusivity.

Our group manifesto looked to resolve the brief and respond to the socio-technical needs of a modern civilisation living in an era which is becoming more dependent on software and equipment. It was important for us to advocate user adaptation and sustainability, which in turn evolved into methods that were very much inspired by the engaging and creative material as found in the production industry. Given the context of the issues which the screen industry is facing, the team proposed a series of mobile Live Rooms. These physical mobile units would be paired with various digital platforms and digital aids to create a hybrid experience of the film industry for those looking to find a ‘Production Assistant’ role and kick-start their career in the screen industry.

Our strategy outlines two scales of digital interaction to support learners on different devices. Each device connects to the same central hub so users can access it from any location:

  1. Screens on Wheels // Crafted from light-weight, renewable and easily accessible resources, the Live Room mobile hubs brings the unique experience of working on set to locations across the country. The pop-ups are a light-weight and moveable space, filled with technology and equipment, which can move easily between urban and rural locations.
  2. Hybrid Experience// The Screens on Wheels mobile platform works in tandem with a virtual production world. Rather than recreating a digital version of an element of the screen industry, the digital space presented the opportunity to be more creative and engaging while working with the mobile hub. This took the form of a game, which encourages users to complete ‘Production Assistant’ tasks as part of their online training.
  3. Digital Connectivity // The hybrid learning environments are supported by a phone-compatible interface on which users can access information on the latest training courses, the location of the hubs, as well as interact with a wider student and professional cohort. This creates an intangible network to support and market the hubs, and will take the form of a game to explore interactive training at various scales.

Credits:

Mentor: Thomas Moore and Luis Hernan
Client: Screen Industries Growth Network (SIGN)
Location: Yorkshire, United Kingdom // Virtual
Students: Harry Henderson, Zhenjie Xu, Matthew Honeywood, Elle
Clemens, Esmé Greenan, Kristie-Lee McAreavey, Chengxuan Fang,
Rongjia Wang, Heping Ruan, Meilin Li, Tong Zhao, Daisy Clapp