Way back in 2019, Forbes wrote an article outlining how augmented reality effects were becoming the new tool to engage audiences. Fast forward to 2021, these digital enhancements are a playful asset for any creative, campaign, or brand. While the desire for them hasn’t been diverted, there has been a change; they’ve never been so accessible to make. Join over 400,000 creators from 190 countries in using Facebook’s free, Spark AR studio, to design a range of AR experiences.
Since Instagram teamed up with Facebook Spark AR to open its platform up to creators, the tools to make your own augmented worlds exist at your fingertips. And, over the next month, the team at Reality.House is making the Facebook Spark AR program even more digestible through talks with creators, inspiring articles, and explainers to go alongside the free seven-hour long course. So, what are you waiting for?
If you are a beginner, don’t worry! The foundational course takes you clearly through the underlying principles of augmented reality. After clicking on the Facebook Blueprint link, you’ll be taken to the website. There you will be introduced to the various AR types that you can learn; People AR, World AR, AR Games, and AR shopping.
Unlike other creative practices, AR allows us to digitally enhance the world around us. Before we do that, we need to understand this physical world and how AR will interact with it. From the Facebook Blueprint page, you can download Spark AR and start exploring Spark AR studio. Before jumping into the interface, one of the key components of the course is to understand trackers and how they integrate with our scene.
Through the use of trackers, we can create smooth movement and track the face or the world around us. In Spark AR, the face tracker is the most popular so one of the best to acquaint yourself with. After this, you’ll get introduced to some new concepts such as segmentation and occlusion. These concepts might sound intimidating at first but when broken down, they are simple to understand. For example, in many circumstances, you’ll need to isolate parts of a scene and segmentation lets you do just that! In Spark AR, there are two key forms of segmentation: human forms and hair! So, go have a play because that doesn’t sound so complicated, now, does it?!
Another key element of the course is to get you comfortable with the Spark AR ecosystem. Here, you will find the products that help you create your own individual effects. Your augmented imaginings can be supplemented through a free AR library that includes 3D models, environments, scripts, and more. If testing out your creations in Spark Studio isn’t enough, you can also check out your pieces through Spark AR player which simulates the look of a phone screen. From there, you’ll find five different places to publish via Facebook and Instagram themselves.
Jumping into a new program could seem intimidating but one of the things that make Spark AR unique is the community aspect. Not only can you google a list of talented Spark AR Official Creators and check out what they are up to, but you can also find the Spark AR Forum on Facebook. This runs as an informal community group where like-minded individuals share tips and tricks for getting started on the Spark AR interface. Running concurrently to this, Reality.House will be hosting bespoke Instagram lives with top Spark AR creatives and sharing a series of articles detailing the stories of inspiring makers in the augmented reality field.
If you want to be inspired, we’d recommend checking out Official Facebook Spark AR Partner Paige Piskin who's kinda a legend in the filter world. Elon Musk actually used one of her creations to show off his baby with Grimes to the world via Twitter.
Want more content like this from inspiring creators or the latest news and briefs from the world of AR? Check out Reality.House on Instagram.