Towards Immersive Motion Capture Acting Design, Exploration and Development of an Augmented System Solution

University dissertation from Västerås : Mälardalen University

Abstract: Current and future animations seek for realistic motions to create a perception of authentic and human-like animations. A technology widely used for such purposes is motion capture. Therefore, to create such human-like animations, motion capture actors enrich the movements of digital avatars with realistic and believable motions and emotions.Acting for motion capture, as it is performed today, does not provide a natural acting environment. This is mostly because motion capture actors do not see and feel the virtual environment they act for, while acting. In many cases this can result in unnatural motions such as stiff looking and emotionless movements.To investigate ways to solve this, we first identify the challenges actors are facing as well as concepts to support a motion capture actor. Furthermore, we discussed, how the task of supporting motion capture actors was approached and which factors were discovered to provide support when designing and im- plementing a solution. Initial prototypes have been created to address the men- tioned issues and to find suitable solutions to support and immerse motion cap- ture actors during their performance. For this thesis, one goal was to conduct research by focusing on the question: What are the experiential qualities of immersion in an interactive system to create an immersive acting environment that supports motion capture actors.The developed application provides a flexibility to set up and modify digital assets and scenes quickly and with an easy to use interface. Furthermore, the prototype helps to provide an understanding on which hardware and software prototypes can be designed and used to build an immersive motion capture environment. The built prototype allows to investigate user experiences, user tests and the satisfaction of users and their effects on motion capture acting.