Tag Archives: Public History

T2P Germany & Poland: Update 1

Wow. What a busy first few days in Germany for my Transition to Professional Practice Global Service-Learning trip with Amizade and Western University.

Day 1- arrival and first look at Berlin:
We arrived safely in Berlin and were met by our guide Mattias Hass at the airport. From there we took the bus to our really neat hostel, “Generator”. It had fun bunkbeds, a ping pong table that was never freee (too many people loved it), WiFi, and an in house bar. Even though most of us had not slept in over 24 hours once arriving in Berlin, Mattias was sure to keep us moving and give us our first glimpse of the city. Mattias is of German desent and has incredible knowledge and insight into the history of Germany in regards to the Second World War. He has his PhD, has worked in Germany as well as Philadelphia, and completed a Postdoc at UofT. Mattias began his tour by sharing with the group that Germany does not have a central national narrative to share her history. It is made up of different pieces including historic sites, events, and monuments. Mattias provided this question to us: How do Germans come to terms with the Nazi party? I think this question is an important one, and currently do not have an answer. From listening to Mattias and discussions with my colleagues, and through my own experience in the Public History field, I think that through commemorative activities such as memorials, people can begin to come to terms with difficult historical narratives. Through memorial work, people that have a lot or very little knowledge can learn and begin to change their understanding and point of view about a certain subject. I will hopefully return to this question throughout my trip.

On the first day we visited: Oranienburger Strasse (central street of old Berlin), 1860s synagoge built on the aforementioned street, stumbling stones in various locations, Alex Beer commemorative plaque, Catholic hospital, Potestant church, the art installation “Missing House”, first home of the elderly Jewish community plaque and monument, Jewish cemetary, the Berliner mischung, and the Museum Blindenwerkstatt Otto Weidt.

Mattias provided us with some background information about the thriving Jewish community that lived in Berlin prior to the Second  World War. The synagoge on Oranienburger Strasse opened in 1866 and was used regularly by the growing Jewish population in the area. The Jewish community saw great success during this time up until 1933, including acceptance of their vibrant society.
Two types of decentralized  commemoration work bring done  in Berlin: stumbling stones and plaques. Both types need active citizenship to complete the projects and maintain them. Other commemoration work is being completed in conjunction with the government.  Stumbling stones are small metal plaques fitted to the cobble stones on the ground all over Berlin to commemorate those that fell victim to the Nazis. The plaques include the name, occupation, and where and how they died. The stones are usualy placed in front of their old place of residence. There are over 5000 stumbling stones and are all provided through sponsorship and volunteer researchers.

We had our first meal in Beriln at an Italian restaurant, which was a funny thing to do, but it certainly was tasty. Later on that day we had dinner at another restaurant near our hostel, I had some yummy sausage, potatoes, and salad.

Overall, day 1 was great, even though the jetlag and exhaustion had overcome us. We had an early  night and got up early to explore  more of what Berlin had to offer concerning the Holocaust.

Watch for my next post about day 2 in Berlin!

Helpful Links:

http://www.orte-der-erinnerung.de

http://m.spiegel.de/international/zeitgeist/a-828763.html#spRedirectedFrom=www&referrrer=http://www.google.pl/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=alex%20bier%20berlin%20commemorative%20plaque%20jewish&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CB4QFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.spiegel.de%2Finternational%2Fzeitgeist%2Fold-jewish-girls-school-converted-into-berlin-gallery-and-restaurant-a-828763.html&ei=QA5RVcmANIv8ygPu4IC4Aw&usg=AFQjCNEfMlOPHzk8w1QLUPmNwYTutKm42g&bvm=bv.92885102,d.bGQ

http://www.stolpersteine-gelsenkirchen.de/stumbling_stones_demnig.htm

Advertisements

100 Years of Loss- The Residential School System in Canada Exhibit Recap

 

Recently a colleague of mine asked if I would be willing to take a look at the 100 Years of Loss exhibit currently on display at the Canadian Museum of History and let her know my impressions. Of course I agreed, I had a bit of time in between volunteering for festivals and attending other museums in Ottawa and it gave me a chance to use my brand new membership card.

For those of you that do not know, the 100 Years of Loss- The Residential School System in Canada Exhibit is an exhibition developed in conjunction with the Legacy of Hope Foundation, the Aboriginal Healing Foundation and Library and Archives Canada. The exhibition “uses reproductions of photographs, artwork and primary documents to tell the story of thousands of First Nations, Inuit and Métis children who were removed from their families and institutionalized in residential schools. It emphasizes the present-day effects of the system, focusing on healing and reconciliation.”[1]

If you are unaware of the Residential School System that existed in Canada between 1831 and 1996, you can familiarize yourself here.

At first glance the exhibit seemed out of place stuck in a corner of the museum, however, as I sat and watched other people interact with the exhibit, it was clear that it was in the right place. Every person that walked by either made a comment about the exhibit or they would mention something they already knew about Residential schools and some even stopped to read some or all of the panels. The exhibit is situated at a crossroads of sorts where people have to pass by. The history therefore cannot be ignored.

The design and colour scheme are fitting for the topic at hand. The exhibit consists of 4 pillars approximately 2.5ft in diameter which serve as text panels and a wavy wall that presents a timeline of the Residential School System. The use of various grey tones and a vibrant orange allow the important information to stand out without seeming offensive. The exhibit includes lots of grey and white space with intentional pops of orange to focus the reader’s attention on the text. The text on the pillar panels was slightly difficult to read, but it may have had to do with the placement of the exhibit under an overhang on the first floor or the font size. I am rather tall and sometimes I would have to crouch down to read the text on the lower half of the pillars, but some short people may not be able to read the text higher up, so that is really a flaw of the human race’s height diversity.

The exhibit is offered in both French and English. Four pillars in English and four in French with the wavy wall having French on one side and English on the other. Even though I cannot read any Aboriginal languages, it would have been nice to see that as an option. I am aware there are hundreds of different groups of Aboriginal people with variations in their languages and it would have been incredibly difficult to choose one or two languages to use. However, if possible it would have been nice to cater to those that may have had a firsthand experience in the Residential School System.

I sat and watched others visit the exhibit for some time to see how they reacted. I heard various responses such as “Oh, that’s the residential school exhibit!” and “is this it?”. I felt compelled to mention that it is a travelling exhibit, so it would be quite difficult to create an extravagant exhibit that would also be sturdy enough for transport. Other visitors were silent as they passed through the exhibit, some came alone. I noticed that because there wasn’t much signage, people began reading in various places, not moving in a chronological timeline. Being a good Western historian I appreciate chronologies, so I wonder if that caused any difficulties for those that didn’t start from the beginning.

I was intrigued to see that the exhibit has an app that you can download for free and use in conjunction with the physical exhibit. I quickly downloaded it and opened it up. From what I can tell it includes all of the text and photographs that the exhibit does but you can just read it from your phone. I think it would have been nice to see some supplemental information and photographs that were not featured in the exhibit itself. There is another feature that I couldn’t get to work. The app tells you to scan a barcode, but does not tell you where they are located or what will happen when you end up scanning them. I tried multiple times to scan various barcodes but to no avail unfortunately.

The content of the exhibit was thorough and intelligently organized into sections. The timeline portion included photographs as well as text to help lead you through the long history of the Residential School System in Canada. The text recognizes Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples’ points of view. The text also describes those people that had positive experiences and benefitted from their time in Residential Schools.

Even though as a Public Historian interested in Aboriginal history I am versed in the history of the Residential School System to some degree, I think that this exhibit gives a fabulous overarching explanation that goes deeper than a general introduction to the subject. I believe that the exhibit achieves the goal of educating the public about what happened here in our own country not so long ago. Thinking abstractly for a moment, as I was walking through the exhibit I was wondering why they chose to use the format they did (round pillars and a wavy wall). I came to a conclusion that possibly they were trying to represent the cyclical nature of abuse, and poor living conditions that occurred in the Residential Schools and consequently continues to this day in some Aboriginal communities. The circles of the pillars representing the cycle and maybe the wavy wall representing the ups and downs of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal relationships throughout history. But I digress.

Overall, I enjoyed the exhibit immensely. The final pillar was rather inspiring and empowered me to want to learn more about Aboriginal Peoples’ experience in Canada. I encourage anyone that has the opportunity to see this exhibit to do so!

 

[1] http://www.historymuseum.ca/event/100-years-of-loss-the-residential-school-system-in-canada/

Two Conferences and an Internship

In the last month I have been privileged to attend the Fort Garry Lectures in Winnipeg and the Canadian Historical Association’s (CHA) Annual Meeting at Brock University in St. Catharines. I also started my summer internship in the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) in Gatineau.

The Fort Garry Lectures hosted by the University of Winnipeg and the University of Manitoba took place May 1-3. It was the first time I presented a paper at a conference and was both exciting and terrifying at the same time. My paper was the final one before the Keynote speaker on the last day which meant I was stressing the entire time I was there. However, the presentation went off without a hitch and people even had questions for which I had answers! I was fortunate to have a lovely roomie that loved museums as much as me! We got lost on the transit system, were accosted by homeless people with $3000 in their pocket (allegedly), and took #itweetmuseums selfies. My seasoned professional conference goer roommate did a fantastic job presenting her paper and was helpful in calming me down before my presentation. One suggestion for those that haven’t presented at a conference before: like I have, choose good travel buddies (your best friend may not be the best choice!)

Lindsay Kernohan- University of Western Ontario
Lindsay Kernohan- University of Western Ontario
IMG_0019
Me! Presenting for the first time at a conference!
IMG_0020
Teaching some ‘regular’ history people a bit about Public History

The Canadian Historical Association’s Annual Meeting takes place every year as part of the Congress of Arts and Humanities. This year it was held in St. Catharines at Brock University. The main reason I attended is because I was chosen as the CHA Graduate Student Committee’s (GSC) English language blogger for the event. The GSC began this initiative last year in order to share with those graduate students who could not attend as well as those unsure why it would be beneficial to them and provide some graduate student insight. I posted 5 blogs on the GSC blog, if you want to see what I thought about the conference click here! I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to attend the conference as well as do what I love- blog!

A summer internship is a requirement of my MA in Public History program. I very gladly and quickly accepted the offer to intern at AANDC under Jean-Pierre Morin, historian, in the Treaties and Governance section of the AANDC. My main task is to work on commemorative activities and initiatives that will raise awareness of Aboriginal Peoples’ involvement in the World Wars. Internship updates coming soon, in the meantime these photos should give you a taste of my internship so far.

 

Nailed it!: Reflecting on Interactive Exhibit Design and Nail Polish History

Finishing touches:

As I had hoped, without tweaking, the patch and the Makey Makey worked perfectly! So I moved on to create a stand that would make the project look a little more professional. I used cardboard and tape to make a stand and then painted it. I also built a little stand with the title “Nail Polish History” painted on it. After I let the paint dry, I conducted a few tests to ensure I didn’t undo a connection and took it upstairs to present at the interactive exhibit showcase. I reconnected everything and tested it again, just to be sure.

2014-04-02 14.26.202014-04-02 14.26.052014-04-02 15.07.33

What I wanted to do:

My original plan was to construct a controller using a webcam and the Max 6 program to recognize the colour of the user’s nail polish. This would allow the user to learn about nail polish history by matching their nail polish with the colour of a section in the nail polish patch in Max 6 that would teach you an interesting fact about nail polish.

What I ended up doing:

However, this idea proved too difficult in a short amount of time. The nail polish colour matching was far too complicated and therefore I ‘spectacularly failed’ that portion of the project. I did succeed in what I ended up creating. I decided to use the Makey Makey and connect with Max 6. Using the Makey Makey allowed me to still use the nail polish theme, but in a different yet fun way! I used brass fasteners as my conductive element. I strategically placed them where you would press if you were pressing a button on a controller that looked like a hand and placed another fastener at the base of the hand where your palm would normally sit. The fastener at the base acted as the ground for the Makey Makey. Using a patch my professor provided me, I added my content and added one more option in the patch for users to choose on the hand. It wasn’t as tricky as I had once assumed, thank goodness. I then used the help functions within Max 6 to figure out how to effectively use presentation mode. I succeeded and was able to present my project without any hitches to the class and the various guests.

Interactive Exhibit Showcase:

My project was well received by the class and guests. It was nice to see that even people who have much more experience in the field than I do, were impressed and interested in what I had achieved. I made sure to explain what I wanted to do originally and why I had to change it to the patrons. Below are some photos from the event:

2014-04-02 15.10.54 2014-04-02 15.16.27 2014-04-02 15.27.00 2014-04-02 16.45.05 2014-04-02 16.57.56 2014-04-02 16.58.03 2014-04-02 16.58.12 2014-04-02 16.58.21 2014-04-02 16.59.22

What I would have liked to have done differently:

I would have preferred that each video and photo show up on the screen by themselves. In the few minutes before our digital project showcase I didn’t have the time to fiddle with the patch in order to make this happen. But with some time and additions to the code, I probably could have made that happen.

I also would have preferred that my videos were a larger size and that they stopped playing when another part of the patch was triggered. The video size could have been remedied by changing the quality of the original saved video. The reason I chose mobile versions of the videos to begin with, was to ensure that I would not overload my computer and the software. I wanted to keep everything as simple as possible.

I would have liked to do more in-depth research into the history of nail polish and nail art. There is so much more to the art than what people think, so I believe it could be expanded on quite nicely. In particular I would have liked to delve into the history behind nail art as a business. I think it is fascinating that the nail art business is thriving and I want to know when it started and why. I would also like to know more about how the esthetician serves as a therapist in some cases.  Patrons tell them things they would not share with those close to them and I would like to know how that role is mentioned or not mentioned in school before the esthetician goes out into the workplace.

What I learned:

I now know that I CAN complete a digital exhibit and not completely fail! I also learned there is always so much more you can be doing and always someone that is going to be capable of so much more than you. You have to keep this in perspective because you know what you are capable of, and know that you are not as technically capable as other people may be. I really enjoyed taking on a project like this, even if I didn’t seem like I was enjoying it at the time. I am glad I had the opportunity to, in Ms. Frizzle’s famous words: “take chances, make mistakes and get messy!”

Ms Frizzle

“21 Brothers” Screening

Image

Interested in film? Interested in the First World War? Interested in historical films? Saturday April 12th at 7pm is a must attend event sponsored by the HGSA – Western University and Western – Department of History!

21 Brothers is the “Longest One-Shot Film in History”

Come out for a free screening of the movie followed by discussion and refreshments with the director Mike McGuire.

Check out the poster for more details.

Friends Forever: Nail polish history and Max 6

Image

 

Today, the project finally started coming together! I met with my professor to get a patch and a MakeyMakey. Although I wasn’t able to get a MakeyMakey today, I will be able to pick one up tomorrow. In the mean time I used the brass paper fasteners and curled them using some needle nose pliers to make a sturdy place for the alligator clips from the MakeyMakey to connect. I thought this would be the easiest way for the contraption to stay together and look kind of cool too! I then ensured the alligator clips fit.. which they did! Yay for small successes!

Image

After a lot of tinkering, changing file names, and searching the contents of my computer.. we finally made the patch work on my lovely Windows computer. This success was followed by a well deserved high-five. 

Image

Next, I started adding my nail polish content to the patch, ensuring the correct file names were kept and double checked that I saved after every change.

Image

AND DRUM ROLL PLEASE……………

Image

I was able to add all the content and add an additional output to the patch and the patch STILL WORKS! Next, I decided to figure out the ‘presentation mode” business. Using the awesome Max 6 help pages, I found step by step instructions for switching to presentation mode, selecting items to be in presentation mode, resizing and moving things in presentation mode. 

Image

After I followed all of the steps, I ended up with the screen below! YAY!

Image

 

Tomorrow I will obtain a MakeyMakey and test the connection. And if all goes to plan, Max 6 and nail polish will live happily ever after in my Interactive Exhibit Design project. And if not… well I don’t want to talk about it.

“Sometimes, you’ve gotta dance with who brung ya” & other words of wisdom gleaned from the National Council on Public History Conference 2014

Image

 

As the first conference I’ve ever attended, all I can say is WOW. I was overwhelmed (in a good way) from the moment I arrived in Monterey, California for the annual National Council on Public History Conference.

Jess and myself

I knew I wanted to get as much bang for my buck as possible, so my colleague and I filled up our days to the absolute max! On the first day at 8:30am I attended the pre-conference workshop entitled “Digital Preservation for Local History and Cultural Heritage Collections”. This workshop was led my Cinda May of the Indiana State University Library. It was incredible. Cinda May was a commanding speaker and quite humorous too. She provided us with a workbook that included all of her slide with space to take notes and a section of resources that are helpful in the field of digital preservation. Cinda May told us that it is easy to digitize things, the trick is to keep all of the digital pieces together. You have to come up with a digitization system, include metadata in the file names, and make sure you are backed-up in case of emergency. Her rule of thumb is three digital copies stored in separate locations, preferably separate geographic locations! However, she thinks that seven copies is the absolute best. Cinda May directed us to various online tools that could help us in our own institutions. Many of her online tools were actually Canadian, and being the only Canadian in the room, I felt pretty darn special. She pointed out CHIN’s Digtial Preservation Toolkit that can be accessed by anyone is a great resource for this type of digital preservation planning. Cinda May also discussed the importance of disaster planning. It’s all well and good to have a disaster plan, but if you only have a copy online, you’re going to be in a pickle when your computer gets wiped out. After three hours of intense learning, I asked Cinda May if I could get a photo with her. She was quite surprised but obliged. She was flattered when I told her that I had been live-tweeting her session, she thought it was great because then more people would learn about digital preservation! If you are interested in any of the resources Cinda May provided us, I would be happy to send them to you!

Cinda May & I- Digital Preservation for Local History and Cultural Heritage Collections

I went out to lunch with my new American friends who attend the graduate program at New Mexico State University. We had a lovely time jesting about Canadian/American differences. I was teased for using the word washroom instead of restroom and other things of that nature. The funniest part was when I asked for vinegar for my fries. The waitress looked at me kind of funny, but said yes. She returned with two small bottles, one with red liquid inside and one with green. I was confused so I asked my new friends what it was because I had asked for vinegar for my fries. To which they responded “What are you, British?” Apparently malt vinegar isn’t as common in California so I was forced to stick with ketchup. Next, I went back to the hotel and finished some homework, there is no rest for the wicked… or Canadian grad students.

NMSU friends and the Canadians

That evening was the First Time Attendee and Mentor/Mentee Reception in the Museum of Monterey, followed by the Opening Reception. It was neat mingling with Public History professionals before we had really got into the meat of the conference. Everyone was very welcoming and interested in what I had to say. NCPH as a welcoming and friendly conference certainly lived up to the hype. The New Professional and Graduate Student Social at London Bridge Pub followed which allowed all the grad students to get to know one another a little better.

Grad Student Social

The next day (March 20th), I started out nice and early with session 4: “Sustainable Practices for Co-Created Exhibits” which was followed by Speed Networking. I posed the question in session 4 “how do you deal with conflicting personalities in co-created exhibits?” Everyone laughed because it can be such an issue in creating exhibits as a non-cohesive group. They suggested that not all conflict is a negative, it just means that the people involved care deeply for the project. They also suggested that Kumbaya moments make for really boring exhibits. You need someone being the final decision maker in order to make things really work. My favourite quote from the session is that “co-created exhibits are more like cooking than baking”, with cooking you can throw a little of everything in and it usually turns out alright. With baking, you have to stick to the recipe (or model) otherwise you’ll have a disaster. I really appreciated the honesty that came from the panelists. Then I attended the Speed Networking session that was phenomenal! I had the opportunity to speak with six different professionals that offered advice for moving ahead in my career and told me how they got to where they are. All of the professionals provided their cards and suggested we contact them if we want to discuss things further. It was a wonderful experience and I hope that it continues in the future.

After a quick lunch I sat in on session 17 “Broadcasting History: Radio, TV, and New Media”. Very interesting session discussing the medium through which we convey history and how it must be different for the different forms of media. I then served my volunteer shift, recording attendance in afternoon sessions and later handed out drink tickets for the Consultants Reception where I got to know a lovely grad student from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. After my volunteer shift was finished, I attended a Dine Around at a local seafood restaurant. The conversation was stimulating even though the restaurant was so popular it was tough to hear one another.

Sea Lions

Friday March 21st, my colleague Jess and I went exploring the shops on the wharf and finally got to see the sea lions we had been hearing so much about! They were hilarious. We also had some delicious apple cinnamon caramel crepes before heading back to present in the Digital Project Showcase. I presented on my digital project on the County of Oxford Jail in Woodstock, Ontario. Check it out here. It was my first conference, so I was a bit nervous to present, but I made it through and even made people laugh, which is always a bonus! After my presentation I got to meet with my mentor Andrew T. Urban, Assistant Professor at Rutgers University. I was able to discuss my research and bounce ideas off him without feeling intimidated. It was really neat to have a professor at a university see serious merit in the things you want to research and further explore. He suggested multiple books and articles that would be helpful on topics I am interested in and offered to look over things I am working on. To say the least, I am so glad I was a part of the mentorship program, and am glad that my mentor/mentee relationship will continue into the future.

Oxford County Jail Presentation

Andrew T. Urban and myself

Then I attended session 44 “Public History in Practice: Strategies for Sustaining the Profession”. This topic generated some seriously heated discussion but was quite interesting and entertaining. I also attended the Public Plenary “The End of Growth” with Richard Heinberg which was well attended and incredibly pertinent to the NCPH theme of sustainability.

Public Plenary

Saturday was not only the last day of the conference, but it was the day we flew home and wanted to go to the Aquarium that EVERYONE and their grandmother said we had to see before we left. So, as good grad students in search of summer internships, we attended session 52 “Internships: To Pay, or Not to Pay. Then I attended session 54 “Small Stories in the Big Picture: New Approaches to “Micro-Public” Histories”. Jess and I quickly said our goodbyes, grabbed last minute business cards and rushed off to pack up, check out, and burn over to the Aquarium. Luckily one of our NMSU friends was there for a second time and offered to show us all the good stuff quickly since we only had an hour until we had to cab to the airport and get on the flight home. Yes, the Aquarium was everything we thought it would be and more! Thanks again to Will, our lively Aquarium tour guide.

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Will and myself

After attending the sessions I did and meeting the people I met, it is safe to say that Public History as a field is definitely a sustainable profession that is always expanding. I am excited for what the future brings in Public History as I am merely at the beginning of my career. After attending NCPH, I feel like I am a part of a welcoming, professionalized field that I am incredibly proud to be associated with. It was a remarkable experience and I can’t believe how lucky I am for being able to attend and be immersed in everything NCPH offered. Attending NCPH is going to be a birthday present to myself for years to come.

 

If you are interested in any of the sessions I attended and live-tweeted, visit my twitter feed: @1StephanieJohns

 

A snag…

Since my last post, I have come to find out that my idea was far too lofty. That being said, my professor suggested I try using a MakeyMakey and a cardboard hand with painted nails as the controller for my Nail Polish History exhibit. I took his idea and ran with it!

I chose to use brass fasteners as the conductive part of the hand. They will allow me to connect with the MakeyMakey alligator clips and trigger a command on my Max 6 patch. This will show a video, text, and/or a photo related to nail polish history.

Check out my cardboard hand controller progress below:

Image

Image

Image

Image

 

I thought that the hand looked rather boring so I decided to add something into my project that I love.. HENNA! I looked up some designs online and freehand drew them on the hand.

Image

 

Image

 

TA DA! The almost finished product! Tomorrow I will meet with my professor and work on connecting the MakeyMakey and plugging in the content to the Max 6 patch.

Image

 

Nail Polish History- Things are moving along!

Success!! Just a little bit…

Image

This morning I began to worry that my webcam would not be compatible with Windows 8. Which technically it isn’t. But after some discussion with classmates and the professor and few google searches, I found the driver for Windows 7 and my VX-1000 webcam. Even though I am running Windows 8, the driver still works and just warns that some capabilities will not be enabled. So far, so good! Yay! Thumbs up!

Image

 

What is the main part of my project? NAIL POLISH! I left the room and painted three of my nails with different colours to test under the webcam. 

Image

Next I decided that Macgyvering a webcam stand would be the best option for finding the correct height for the video. Using my water bottle and the webcam box I found the perfect height to get both my nails and most of my hand focused on the screen.

Image

Image

After I set it up, I filmed a short video to track the colours of the nail polish so that my professor can help me figure out a patch for Max 6.

What are the next steps?

– using the new patch in Max 6 and troubleshooting to ensure it works with my computer and webcam

– writing a short history of nail polish or a few fun facts

– testing the patch with everything connected

Hopefully everything continues smoothly… and I succeed moderately.

 

 

 

 

 

Interactive Exhibit Design: The History of Nail Polish and Nail Art

Aha! An idea has formed and I have an understanding of what I need to do to bring it to fruition!

My project will be an interactive history of nail polish! Who knew you could find information out there on nail polish history?! I hope to include sections on: Early Nail Art, North American Nail Art, The Business Side of Nail Polish and Nail Artistry, different Techniques, Types of Polish, and links to neat Nail Art Tutorials that people can do at home.

Using the program Max 6 and an external webcam, I will turn your fingernails into controllers for the interactive exhibit on the various aspects of nail polish history. The first step will be for you to paint your nails predetermined colours (5 or 6 depending on the number of headings I decide to go with). This will allow the webcam and Max 6 to recognize when you select different headings within the onscreen interactive display. You will have to match your fingernail to the colour of the heading you wish to open. When you are finished reading or watching video about the topic, you can use one of your nails to go back (colour to be determined).

As I work through the Max 6 Jitter tutorials I will update you on my progress. But for now, here is a rough drawing of what I want the presentation mode of my interactive nail polish history exhibit to look like.

Image