Advances in projection technology have placed digital artists at the forefront of the entertainment industry. Digital artists can now offer the entertainment industry accessibility to some of their all time favourite stars. Even the ones who have passed away. How are they doing this? Digital avatars.
Not A Hologram
Digital avatars are often confused with holograms. Digital projection is the medium used to present these digital avatars to the world and holography is not a part of the process. In fact, the illusion of the digital avatar is made by projecting three-dimensional, visual data onto a thin film. This can allow for the same performance to be broadcasted ‘live’ in many stadiums worldwide.
Abba World Tour 1979 in 2018
Digital artists always face the battle of controversy when it comes to any type of technological advancement. Swedish musicians are touring in the Abba avatar tour project as their 1979 selves. People all over the world will be able to step food in a stadium and experience what it would have been like to see that band in 1979. This is amazing.
Although there have been many concerns regarding digital avatars, the live acts have consistently been met with positive reviews. Digital artists used the program “Pepper’s Ghost” to create the optical illusions allowing the Gorillaz to join Madonna on stage at the 2006 Grammy Awards. Recording artists like Tupac and Michael Jackson have also been turned into digital projections.
Patrons of the arts have complained about the authenticity factor behind calling pre-recorded material a live act. Others criticize the digital avatars for as imitating someone who had passed on is considered inappropriate.
Along with many other digital endeavours, digital avatars can be costly. The equipment necessary for a digital projection of a visual avatar can cost nearly 500k for one venue. That adds up quickly when you put on a worldwide tour.