"Treehouses App: Treehouses of the Pacific Northwest" was an ambitious project to create. Our team, consisting of my brothers, friends, Pete Nelson and I, had set out to build a fully immersive interactive book, with the goal that the user would be able to dive into as much content on a particular place as possible. We were in the company of few others that had tried; heavy hitters like National Geographic or Al Gore's ebook, "Our Choice." Nonetheless, with entirely self-funding we moved forward with our goals.
I had been a fan of Pete Nelson's books and work for awhile; being a world renown architect, he had very interesting content. After working with him on various media-related projects, the idea took root. It was for us create a fully digital book on treehouses.
Filming additional scenes at Mt Rainier
I wanted the person who picked up a copy of the ebook to have a feeling of freedom. One of my favorite things about open world video games is that sense in freedom. You can check out this or that. You can go exploring all day, or dive straight into the lore and missions. Our ideas for this were very similar, wanting to give that feeling to architecture; that you could do more than what you'd see on the internet where all you see is a photo or two or a few written lines. That's all you get in most subjects. The pinch and tap gesture we created for the app...the animation that allows you to enter each treehouse, was made to really empathize that feeling of more...there is lots of content to dive into. How far down the rabbit hole would you like to go Alice?
Do you want to just read the story and see the photos? What about a cinematic video tour? Why not a virtual tour with our signature "Compass" mode, which fully utilizes the iPads accelerometer for an almost virtual reality experience. Do you want to watch a video of the construction of the structure? Would you like to see the blueprints, too? How about tips for building your own? And at that, what kind of tree is yours? Here is a list of the best trees to build in....+ so much more...we even initially were going to have 3d models of each treehouse.
The region and name of the Treehouses App: "Treehouses of Pacific Northwest", came mainly from the fact that Pete, my brothers, friends and I are all based out of this area. It would appear that the regional name hasn't shied anyone away from it either. It has been at the top of the app charts in several countries, including the US and the UK. Plus a shout out to many in Norway and the Netherlands; the Northerner's really loved it, too! This has been a great project and sparked a new passion for evolving mediums and taking narratives in original directions. I have lately been working with a lot of different ones in experiments. Till next version....