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Week 9 - Storytelling

I worked on my stories this week. I want to try to make the story more based on a tree's perspective instead of human being's. For example, trees don't have nervous system, so they are likely have no emotions like us. I think about how to make the stories more like a tree's stories. Because this project is showing the urban history from an other natural object's perspective, I searched the old tree's information online, and recreated three stories for it during 1918-1938.


Here is the first version stories:


Narration: Human beings understand history from their own perspective. However, they are not the only creatures in this world. How does history look like from another’s point of view?

A dog? A cat? A wolf? A beetle or a daisy? Or even an american elm…

This mixed reality experience will help you explore the world through an Elm’s emotions.

This experience is about a real tree that lives at the crossing of 72nd street and Ridge boulevard in brooklyn and is based on the book “What a plant knows” .


1. Seedling in 1918: It is damp today. I can feel it from my roots. The environment around me is changing a little: less pressure and more light.

This is the first time I feel the light. It is not strong but it’s still I can feel it. It helps me know when to grow and when to bloom.

Rain is falling on me.


2. Tree in 1928:

I felt something changing in my body. I know it is because of that smell. A smell is emitted by other trees around me when they are attacked by bugs or insects. They are trying to protect themselves.

I smelled it. And the smell makes my body emit more methyl salicylate, a kind of preparation for killing the insects that may try to attack me.


3. Tree in 1938:

Light is pretty strong today but each day, I feel it for less and less time.

Something is shading me from the sun.

I feel something touch me.

I still remember many days ago, trees around me were attacked by beetles. It is not unusual for trees to be attacked by beetles but that was different.

Those beetles were spreading a disease the humans call Dutch Elm Disease. This caused a lot of trees to died. Now maybe there are just one or two trees around me that are my age. Or maybe just me.


Besides, I created my first version VR environment based on these three stories.