I’m exploring using crude Augmented Reality (AR) in the app, superimposing images of the past over the present and getting people to stand in the right spot in the actual location so they can hold up their phone and directly compare the two.
Here’s an example of a series of images that could be used – I’ve superimposed them all on top of each other in the photo above, but plan to use video to dissolve slowly from the present, back through the ages, and give the user the opportunity to scroll through the video and hence stop time and examine a moment in history more closely. This image is interesting because in both the pre-cinema photo and the post-1912 photo there is a horse and cart (almost in exactly the same position) – possibly from Albert Type’s neighbouring taxi service. There’s something striking about seeing the clash between the modernity of cinema and pre-industrial horse-drawn transport.
In the above photo, the bicycle and the car have taken over as mode of transport, between the wars, with car culture peaking in the present day and the addition of an electric street lamp (incidentally the Curzon was the first building in Clevedon to have electricity). You can still see the original ‘The Picture House’ lettering on the pediment above the main entrance, which is no longer there.
With both of the above examples I think it will be stronger when you can actually scroll between a clean image of the present, through the dissolve, to the clean image of the past and back again, exploring details and differences. Jo Reid at Calvium says this should be possible using a control bar beneath the video. Very exciting as, when we tested the first iteration, those elements that worked best where those that brought your attention to the present moment, whilst evoking the past. I hope this AR technique will be equally affective/effective.