Holographic Oracle Deck
‘Crystals & Energy’ is a holographic oracle deck exploring a range of energy sources through the nature of crystals and minerals as energy-storing matter.
Lídia and Artemis, Special Issue 20 guest editors, asked us to modify an oracle deck of our choice. We — Cara and Boyana — prototyped a holographic oracle deck where a type of crystal is coupled with a type of energy resource in a single card in an attempt to talk about the global energy crisis we are facing today. It was important to us to provide multiple perspectives not only on how energy is used but where and under what conditions it is sourced. We attempted this by using crystals sourced in particular areas to provide a specific insight and perspective onto a facet of the global energy ecosystem. In practice, our deck provides an educational experience through the use of a DIY prism and complimentary audiovisual materials, which serve to create an immersive learning environment.
After some quick research, we decided to couple Aquamarine and Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) which we thought would fit nicely as a first example of such a card.
Why Aquamarine? It looks like water that has been crystallised; stored energy; compression; solidified; put under pressure, or exposed to a specific temperature so that it changes its state (from liquid to solid).
Why LNG? It is natural gas that has been liquified; compressed; liquified; put under pressure, or exposed to a specific temperature so it changes its state (from gas to liquid); stores energy that can be channelled later.
Next, we wrote a short poem weaving these two elements into an everyday narrative. Later, this poem served as a script to create a voice narration (a one minute long audio piece) that went into the video creation process. Although the final text deviates slightly from our initial
idea, we felt the change was appropriate, as it was inspired by a conversation we had with our tutor, Steve, earlier that day. He talked about his childhood memories of collecting rocks in notebooks, perhaps similar to what geologists do when documenting their discoveries. He also mentioned a few things about caverns and a mine (which later turned into a museum) located near the city in which he used to live.
To visualise the card, we used a hologram video-maker app. The process was fun and easy. All we had to do was simply find a high-resolution image of the Aquamarine crystal on a black surface and upload it into the app. Lastly, we made a model of a pyramid prism so that we could demonstrate the prototype fully. To get the full holographic effect, we had to put it on top of a phone screen and play the video, which we uploaded on YouTube and embedded as a link onto our Special Issue’s website.
We saw in this prototype a potential to provide new knowledge, to create an engaging learning experience around energy sources, and also to provide a bit of wonder and immersion into a discourse that can often feel dense. By combining these different elements, we were hoping to create an unusual experience that can help people better understand and appreciate the importance of energy sources and sustainability. It will be interesting to see how our prototype evolves and impacts people’s perceptions of these topics.