Immersive Systems Design School of Simulation & Visualisation

Owen Burns

Owen Burns is a creative computing designer who combines his knowledge of computer technology and media culture in his work.

The diversity in my projects throughout university, particularly in my final year, shows the wide range of applications of 3D modelling. It can be used in a contemporary context, such as in game development or as an art medium but can also give life to existing tools like heritage visualisation or other educational uses.

My work is often inspired by the desire to bridge the divide between 3D modelling and other artistic disciplines by cdemonstrating both technical knowledge and artistic aesthetics. With other multi-disciplinary projects, I intended to present fun and interesting games or animations/films using original applications and techniques.

Studying 3D modelling at GSA developed both technical and artistic skills which guided me through the different applications and skill sets. From this, I’ve developed skills in 3D visuals, animation/films, game making, educational content development and academic skills.

Artwork Recreations
Tantallon Castle Reconstruction
Duck, Duck, Move

Artwork Recreations

This project involved the transformation of 2D artworks and into the 3D discipline. As stated before, a passion of mine is connecting traditional art disciples with emerging technologies like 3D modelling. The conversion of artworks into 3D shows how 3D modelling can be used to adapt or even enhance original meanings.

Two artworks were chosen for this project including Wassily Kandinsky’s Joyous Ascent and René Magritte’s The Son of Man. The choosing of artworks was influenced by the ability to enhance or develop the original intent or meaning of the original.

The recreation of Joyous Ascent by Wassily Kandinsky was influenced by the artist’s synaesthesia. This neurological condition meant he strongly associated music and sound with corresponding shapes and colours. Animating the shapes depicted in the artwork along to Victory Dance by Ezra Collective gives the artwork the movement that perhaps Kandinsky intended.

The Son of Man by René Magritte is a surrealist self-portrait, the meaning of which is debated. The recreation of this used 3D photogrammetry and manual 3D modelling to create an accurate representation of the recreator to replace the artist in the original.

Joyous Ascent Recreation

A recreation of Wassily Kandinsky's Joyous Ascent animated along to Victory Dance by Ezra Collective.

The Son of Man Recreation

A recreation of René Magritte's The Son of Man.

Kandinsky Recreation

Kandinsky Recreation

Magritte Recreation

Tantallon Castle Reconstruction

This project was made as part of a dissertation research project regarding the comparison of information retention within heritage visualisation. A reconstruction of Tantallon Castle situated on the East Coast of Scotland during the 16th century was created as a basis for participant testing.

Growing up in East Lothian developed a connection with the rich history of Scotland’s past, in particular it’s castles. Tantallon Castle had always been a favourite of mine but in recent years I saw it deteriorate. In April 2022 access inside the castle became restricted. This made me want to use my skills to give access to a greater audience.

The Tantallon Castle reconstruction used historic information from experts and artistic representations to create a film and 3D interactive environment to test between.

Tantallon Castle Reconstruction - Film

Tantallon Castle Reconstruction - Interactive Environment

Tantallon Castle Reconstruction

Tantallon Castle Reconstruction

Duck, Duck, Move

This project centred on a creative application of an XR device. I chose to use the HTC Vive and the Vive tracker. This was a two-player game where one person in VR gets placed in a fantasy carnival environment and plays a classic fairground game. This game involves throwing virtual bean bags at a duck target. The duck is tracked to the second player’s head using a custom tracker helmet.

Gameplay Footage


Game Area

Custom VR Helmet Tracker