Tyler joins Making Ways to talk all about his journey from video game designer to award-winning VR pioneer, lauded by Sundance, Tribeca, Wired, and more. Tyler creates hyperrealities in VR meant to stimulate all the senses and elevate music to a full-body, emotionally transformative experience. Listen in to hear about Tyler’s early inspiration with Toy Story, the near decade he spent at video game studio Double Fine Productions, the hurdles he faced while pursing a music video career in New York City, how he overcame his fears in releasing his first short film, and the science behind virtual reality’s mind-expanding potential.
“If you’re making something that is purely for yourself, chances are that. . .you are going to end up with a much more personal piece of art that people can really see you in. Especially for animation, that’s really important, to make it personal.”
– Tyler Hurd
Tyler Hurd is a San Francisco-based 3D animator and tech artist currently creating fun, animated virtual reality things. Tyler spent nine years at the video game studio Double Fine Productions and a few more freelancing in the advertising world in NYC before he combined his knowledge of game engines and pipelines with interactive animation to create his short film BUTTS—widely recognized as the first animated short film in VR. Tyler’s projects include room-scale VR music videos for the songs “Old Friend” by Future Islands and “Chocolate” by Giraffage. His award-winning works have been featured at festivals such as Tribeca and Sundance New Frontier. Tyler continues to explore the powerful emotional response and the joyful effects VR enables.
If you want to peek under the hood of Tyler Hurd’s imagination, just don a pair of VR goggles and dive into his latest VR experience, Chocolate, which transforms you into a robot with cat launchers for hands, surrounded by waves of luminescent landscapes and giant-sized champagne-popping big poppa cats. Like Tyler’s previous acclaimed virtual reality creation Old Friend for the eponymous Future Islands song, Chocolate is an interactive music experience — this time set to tune of Bay Area artist Giraffage’s song of the same name. When I sat down with Tyler for the latest episode of Making Ways…