Painting in Virtual Reality: Exploring Google Tilt Brush

By Thaddeus Kaszuba-Dias

Currently in the ETC lab we have been experimenting with the capabilities of Google Tilt Brush, a virtual reality program designed for the HTC Vive Virtual Reality headset (VR). This program is essentially a 3D sketchbook where you can create, draw, design, and experiment to your heart’s content in a virtual 3D space. It takes the idea of drawing on paper and gives you a 3rd dimension with a very cool palette of brushes and effects to play with to make your pieces come to life.

Me playing around in Tilt Brush

Some of the questions we have been asking are “What are the capabilities of this program in CLA? If there are multiple people working with this program, what is the vocabulary like? How does that vocabulary shift when creating a 2D to 3D piece?” These are things that we in the ETC lab will be exploring more and more with the many diverse guests we have in our space!

As of now, google tilt brush is a very interesting program to experiment with importing 3D properties that others have developed in another program such as Maya, Google Sketch-up, or Blender. Then users have added their own creative spins on these imports using the tools provided in google tilt brush. These can also be exported to be played with in their respective platforms.

Screenshot of a drawing on top of an imported model in Tilt Brush

There is also a capacity for storytelling in google tilt brush. The creative, and perhaps perfectionist mindset thrives in Google Tilt Brush. For those wishing to express a single emotion, tell a story, or express a thought visually, Google Tilt Brush seems to have just the right amount of tools and atmosphere for that kind of work to thrive. All pieces created in Tilt Brush can be exported as 3D models to be uploaded to galleries, websites, or blogs. It could possibly be a revolutionary tool for creatives on a budget. And don’t worry, its free of charge to use here in the ETC Lab!

Animated .GIF recorded in Tilt Brush

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *