Designing in a virtual world

The current obsession for hunting down colourful little monsters that aren’t really there is just one illustration of how we live in a world where our own reality doesn’t seem to be enough any more. Visual expression has also come a long way from the classic pencil, paper and brush, and we designers increasingly want to create and experience the things we imagine. We no longer just want people to view our work: we want them to really immerse themselves in it and, with the new age of digital art, this desire has never been stronger.

Imagine being able to physically walk through and around your creations as you invent them! Well, now you can – thanks to virtual reality. Not only is it changing the way we experience things, but it’s massively going to revolutionise the way we create, view and interact with various media.

With Google’s recently launched Tilt Brush app, the sensation of creating in virtual reality is nothing short of mind-blowing. With the swipe of a digital brush (and by donning a virtual reality headset) it allows you to create life-size 3D imagery using brushes and colours from a virtual palette. You can paint with literally anything from traditional strokes and ink to the more exciting light, stars, fire and snow. You can even paint with textured fabrics such as denim, silk, leather and cotton. When your canvas can literally be anywhere, Tilt Brush makes your creativity endless.

Although Tilt Brush offers a realm of endless possibilities, and represents incredible technical innovation, it remains to be seen whether it’s just a grown-up and expensive colouring-in toy or a real leap forward in the art and design world.