Augmented reality hits the catwalk
By Paul Ridden
March 29, 2010
It's not unusual to see some bizarre and extraordinary creations at the London Fashion Show and this year Cassette Playa continued this fine tradition with a live augmented reality catwalk performance. CGI animations on screens behind the models on the catwalk were triggered by different symbols on the clothing being shown, transporting the audience into a rich, colorful digital world where the boundaries separating reality and the virtual are blurred.
With 3D animation "softwear" development provided courtesy of Philip Delamore, David Sweeney and Peter Hill of the London College of Fashion and funding from the London Development Agency, Cassette Playa managed to successfully merge the real world and a virtual digital landscape into one bold colorful creation in a show that saw augmented reality used for the first time in the world of fashion.
As the models stood in front of a camera, the symbol on the clothing activated the animation on the screen. The model was subsequently stripped of facial features, enclosed in bizarre headgear or surrounded by dancing figures straight out of the introduction to "Tales of the Unexpected" in a mix of the medieval and industrial as determined by the software.
The designers are looking to make the AR softwear available when buying an augmented garment so that customers can enjoy a tailored virtual experience in front of their computer or laptop webcam.
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