Virtual reality is becoming a huge technology in the design and art world. Initially virtual reality is thought to be strictly a gaming device, yet its capabilities are far greater than an immersive game. To begin, virtual reality is more than a bulky headset that individuals are able to wear. It’s any technology that is able to connect a digital aspect to reality.. So.. y’know, virtual reality. Initially augmented reality was a huge step for this market, as it allowed digital assets to be projected into the physical world. For example, Pokémon Go was a huge supporter and user of augmented reality. Projecting Pokémon into the users surroundings to be seen upon a handheld device. Virtual reality completely immerses an individual into this visual plane. Again, by a headset. This allows the user to interact with the digital world with physical movements; such as moving one’s head, or interacting with objects using controllers or gestures.
With the creation of an entirely new world (essentially) comes with design opportunities. Literally any design application in reality can be transferred into virtual reality. Digital print could be designed, advertisements, characters and interior design. Instead of having a physical presence, it’s all digital. The movie Ready Player One is a huge example of the capabilities of virtual reality in the design industry. The antagonist is attempting to display paid advertisements upon the viewable area of each player’s screen. Not that I think virtual reality will get to that point, but it certainly is applicable enough to make a movie about it. With advertisements come consumerism. Where there’s consumerism, there’s things that need to be designed. Both products and brands. I can imagine a virtual mall where individuals are able to roam around, “walk” into a store, find an item, and purchase said item to have it show up in real life. Every aspect of that experience would need to be designed visually for ease of access and functionality, let alone aesthetic reasons. There are already applications where an individual can scan their physical room, and place objects into the room digitally to visualize how these objects would look and fit.
Virtual reality has only recently made its big breakthrough. There are countless companies currently creating different platforms and games for individuals to experience. As time progresses and more elements are honed and individuals are able to experiment with virtual reality more, it’s only going to grow exponentially. The advancements are not limited to the headsets too. Displays could be projected upon different surfaces. Such displays would also need to be designed.