Portfolio: Haptic Dice for Toppan Printing

Involvement: Shooting, Editing, Translation, Post-Production and minor VFX.

I initially wasn’t aware that there were competitions other than the Cannes International Film Festival in Cannes, France. Speaking in movie terms, Cannes was all about the celebration of cinematic expression. Simple. But it turns out there is such a thing called the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, and I apologize if this is all old information to fellow filmmakers and videographers.

This competition was brought to my attention by a friend from Toppan Printing, who was working on a project involving developing a game/tool for visually impaired individuals. The goal of the project was to make a video that explains the concept of the product and to submit it to the Cannes Lions festival.

To get a better idea of the project and the product, I suggest you first take a look at the video embedded above. (Below is the Japanese version.)

The mission of the product is to give back the joy of touching to individuals who may just about be fed up of relying on it to live everyday.
As people who see, we absorb most of the information surrounding us with our eyes. Therefore, when we touch something we are able to anticipate the feel of touch we are about to experience, reducing unfortunate surprises. However, that is no so for visually impaired individuals, and for some, touching is the most uncomfortable and terrifying of experiences. For some, it’s a necessity of life.

This game encourages communication between the players as they describe the texture they are touching. They are sometimes met with surprised reactions from other players, who got different “feels” by touching the same texture.
Some would chose a different texture to describe the same keyword. When you think of a “teenager’s skin”, do you think of soft, young skin, or skin riddled with acne?

My involvement in the project started with the shooting of the game session in March, which led into the editing process.
The rules were simple. The video simply needed to be under two minutes.
However, cramming a description of the game, it’s backstory, creation, interview sound bites, natural sounds, all the while maintaining an emotional core and a logical narrative through-line proved to be pretty complicated.

Was the description clear enough? Are the visuals strong enough? Are the sound bites making sense (cuz of course they are heavily edited)? Does the video have time to breath? Finally, is it engaging?

We ended up working on the details (including narration and length) until the very end, but I think we managed a good balance of the above elements. The results don’t come until June, but here’s hoping it goes far.

A big thanks to Hirotsugu Komiya (cameraman) and Akiko Kondo (Project general producer) for inviting me into the project, and TILS (Tokyo Independant Living Support) for their support.