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Above a bakery in Portland, Oregon, a unique group of storytellers are quietly changing museum and exhibit experiences all over the world. In this Creative Inspirations documentary, we meet Second Story, creators of award-winning interactive projects for clients that include the Getty Museum, National Geographic, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Smithsonian Institution, just to name but a few.
Founders Julie Beeler and Brad Johnson introduce us to their uniquely talented studio where their signature interactive design is conceived and produced. Second Story creates immersive adventures that educate and entertain through compelling visuals, touch and play, and inspiring participation through curiosity.
We follow the team as they reveal one of their latest triumphs, the Age of Mammals exhibit at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, designed to both please the doctorates and the first graders who participate in their finished project.
(Music playing.) Julie Beeler: We're storytellers, but I don't really feel, in that traditional sense, that I'm really a storyteller. Brad Johnson: Sometimes we're creating pieces in a museum where you have to accommodate both school buses, loads of kids that have very limited attention spans, to people that are experts in the subject matter. So we have to come up with a scheme that will accommodate that broad range of potential visitors.
Heather Daniels: We have these tags that used to say the evolution, the co-evolution of canines in North America. We found that to be really academic and that people were not at all interested, but suddenly if we put the dog flag up there, 'Oh Dogs! I want to learn about dogs. Okay, let's click it.' Shoam Thomas: I possibly want to lure them in and almost have them flow into this back staging area, where we feel like that could be like a collaboration, a contribution-type area.
Matt Arnold: You can have a lot of kids walk up to this, and it has to be able to react to all of them. You can't have three or four of them touching it, and it's working for them, and a fifth one walks up, and he is like, "Oh?" Brad: All of these people coming together, every project is a different mix of the different people that are here. Julie: That's essentially what you do every day with interactive media is take all the varying components and put them together. (Music playing.)
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