Hyperlocal: Integrating Past and Present in Interactive Design
This is a guest post from NFB Interactive producer Jennifer Moss.
Paul Shoebridge and Michael Simons are the dynamic creative duo known in the back alleys and coffee shops of Vancouver as “The Goggles.” They are the creators behind the NFBs wonderful interactive documentary about a vanished Canadian town, Welcome to Pine Point, and were brought in by the NFB and Hyperlocal co-creator Sean Embury to lend their design expertise to two of the project’s interactive pieces. Presented with several essays on local change by prominent Canadian writers, they were most intrigued by Will Ferguson’s Garrison Woods and Heather O’Neill’s The Red-light District.
Interactive design borrows a little bit from all kinds of other disciplines: designers integrate music, visuals, text and narration, and create various ways in which users can explore or interact with the work. A project’s interactive elements often underscore or mirror its themes. The adaptation of Will Ferguson’s piece is a perfect example of this.
Ferguson’s essay describes the community of Garrison Woods in Calgary, where the author now lives. It’s a relatively new “planned community,” built on the site of an old army barracks. I asked Paul to discuss the specifics of how he, Mike and Sean came up with the design for the Garrison Woods interactive piece, and how it complements Ferguson’s story.