Balti Virtual brought augmented reality to a downtown mural — with help from Ellen - Technical.ly Baltimore

Creative

Feb. 15, 2019 2:04 pm

Balti Virtual brought augmented reality to a downtown mural — with help from Ellen

The mural at the Downtown Cultural Arts Center was unveiled on "The Build Up," an ellentube web series that chronicles Baltimore drummers Timothy Fletcher and Malik Perry.
Balti Virtual created on its biggest canvas yet.

Balti Virtual created on its biggest canvas yet.

(Courtesy photo)

A Baltimore mural that’s being broadcast by the team behind “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” is one of the latest local spots to mix art and tech, thanks to an augmented reality component from Port Covington-based software company Balti Virtual.

After their drumming skills caught the attention of Ellen’s team, Baltimore musicians Timothy Fletcher and Malik Perry were tapped to be featured in an ellentube web series this year. “The Build Up” chronicles the duo’s community development efforts in Baltimore, including outreach at the Downtown Cultural Arts Center at 401 N. Howard St. Joining Fletcher and Perry in the community work are HGTV’s John Colaneri and Anthony Carrino.

Balti Virtual was tapped to help out with one component of the arts center project.

“When Anthony and I embarked on our mission to pay it forward in Baltimore we wanted to do something that would impact the entire community. We always had an idea of doing a mural, but we knew it had to be a 21st century mural that stopped people in their tracks,” host Colaneri said in a statement. “We found the perfect artist by the name of Jay Coleman and then partnered with Balti Virtual to complete the project. As soon as we entered [the] Balti Virtual office they gave us a presentation of the augmented reality software, which blew us away.”

Coleman’s music-oriented mural on the side of the arts center is among the unveils on the web show, which includes a big reaction to the augmented reality feature from Balti Virtual.

The AR feature lives on beyond the show. With Balti Virtual’s app called AppAR8, anyone walking by can add drumming to the viewing experience on the spot through an interactive feature created by the agency.

Advertisement

Conceptualized by Balti Virtual cofounder and Creative Director David Thompson, the animated drums that appear through the app produce different sounds and colors, and users can also switch between acoustic and electronic drums. According to CEO Will Gee, Balti Virtual added a few “Easter eggs” that unlock special features. Along with paying homage to early NES codes, “we wanted to add another hidden layer of surprise and delight,” Gee said.

For Balti Virtual, the experience of working on the effort included a visit to the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank. Back in Baltimore, the 60-foot mural is a much larger piece than the temporary tattoos and children’s books already in the company’s portfolio — which means that the work was also a technical milestone for it.

“The impact of the AR really scales along with the size of the target,” Gee said. The drums, for example, appear to be the size of a person when viewed through the app.

Gee said a forthcoming plaque at the mural will provide instructions for how to access the augmented reality, and it will be available on the app for at least two years.

You must appreciate accurate, relevant and productive community journalism.  Support this sort of work from professional reporters with seasoned editors.  Become a Technical.ly member for $12 per month
Companies: Balti Virtual
People: Will Gee
-30-
BECOME A CONTRIBUTOR TO THE JOURNALISM FUND TO COMMENT
Already a contributor? Sign in here
Connect with companies from the Technical.ly community
New call-to-action

Advertisement

MICA Game Lab and Shock Trauma are developing VR games for spinal injury patients

Giant’s new Alex Ovechkin-themed cereal includes an augmented reality game

Augmented reality walk offers a new way to explore the solar system

SPONSORED

Baltimore

Why two eminent Baltimore higher-ed institutions collaborated to create this unique dual degree program

Baltimore

Protenus

DevOps Engineer

Apply Now

Philadelphia

Vistar Media

Sr. Software Engineer

Apply Now

Philadelphia

Vistar Media

Front End Engineer

Apply Now

The Kinetic Sculpture Race makes a splash

Balti Virtual teamed with the Washington Capitals to bring AR to hockey fans

UB’s PoeGrammers created augmented reality for spacewalks. Now they’re bringing it to NASA

SPONSORED

Baltimore

What Asymmetrik is doing to help lead healthcare’s digital transformation

Baltimore, MD

14 West

BI TechOps Analyst

Apply Now

Baltimore, MD

14 West

Scrum Master

Apply Now

Baltimore, MD

14 West

Lead Qlik Developer

Apply Now

Sign-up for daily news updates from Technical.ly Baltimore

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!