Following Mindtrek 2018, the International Technology Conference (10-11th October) at Tampere Hall, the first 360 Friday event was held at the University of Tampere. Those who registered for the free side event were able to explore a number of VR, AR and 360 productions presented by representatives from the University of Tampere, Tampere University of Technology and TAMK.

Attendees were welcome to enjoy some beers and snacks as the host, Juhani Linna from the University of Tampere introduced and interviewed some of the creators. Markku Turunen, professor of Interactive Technology at the university also shortly introduced TAUCHI (Tampere Unit for Computer-Human Interaction), a ‘research center focusing on human-technology interaction’ at the Faculty of Communication Sciences. After a few talks and presentations about work processes, the guests scattered to delve into the various demos.

The following productions from staff and students at Media and Arts were displayed at the event:

Virtual Art Gallery - Liya Pirkuliyeva, Ignasi Granell Vendrell and Tatu Heinämäki
Attendants were able to view the VR art gallery presenting works from the degree show ‘HOT FUTURES’ held this spring exhibiting the works of the graduating class of 2014. The viewer was able to pick the artist whose works they wanted to see by picking up a tape with their name and inserting it into a player. They could also throw black paint onto the paintings and watch video works.

Virtual Art Gallery

Locked Up - Carita Forsgren
Those who dared got to watch the 4-minute 360 thriller, co-produced by TAMK and YLE, at the first public viewing of the short film.

First public viewing of 'Locked Up'

Fintan Sauna Experience - Antti Perälä
A VR collaboration between TAMK and the Finnish Embassy in Tokyo aiming to bring Japan an authentic sauna experience, incorporating Fintan, the embassy’s mascot. Guests were able to shower and enjoy the virtual sauna by putting on the VR gear.

Fintan Sauna Experience

The event also featured projects from other associations such as the premiere of ‘Eternal Youth’, a 360 experience with a peaceful finnish winter environment, created by the University of Tampere and Helsingin Sanomat. The purpose of the collaboration was to explore the concept of meditation in a VR environment. ‘Captain Karl’, a short VR documentary by Rakka Creative and an  interactive omni-directional video (iODV/360) editor presented by Kimmo Ronkainen from the university were also featured.

'Eternal Youth' meditation experience

All in all the small event succeeded in displaying a compelling range of examples of how 360 technology can be put to use for different creative purposes, giving an insight to the future of more interactive and immersive media.

Text and photos: Hilma Nurmi 2018

Ecological thinking and sustainability are valuable issues as part of D.P. in Media and Arts- studies, alongside e.g. emerging media, art, music and developing entrepreneurship skills. Lecturer Fanni Niemi-Junkola of fine art study path did a study trip to Iceland University of Arts in Reykjavik (IUA) to meet the students and teaching staff.

IUA is situated about 5 km from the center of Reykjavik at a seaside. The university is a self-governing institution providing higher education in fine arts, theater, dance, music, design, architecture, and art education. All departments are situated in the same building. Students have their own studio spaces and there are some lab spaces, for example for sculpture, painting and AV-equipment available too. IUA offers BA and MA -level education and is part of our exchange program on BA -level.

"I had a very interesting time meeting the fine art -students discussing the topics that they work on. We all took part in Olafur Eliasson (an Icelandic-Danish artist) SOE Kitchen communal project, for the artist talk and lunch by OE. I also gave a public talk of my own work processes in IUA and the place was packed! I totally recommend IUA as a choice for exchange, especially if you are interested in environmental issues and ecology."

IUA Iceland University of the Arts, Reykjavik

Fanni Niemi-Junkola: Artist talk in IUA, Reykjavik

Olafur Eliasson SOE kitchen project in Reykjavik, Marshall House

More info:; international co-ordinator

The festival venue
From 9.9.2018 until 14.9.2018 I participated in Cartoon Forum in Toulouse, France. It was a really big animation event that gathered investors, other business people, producers, animators and students together. In this forum, a lot of companies pitched their projects that were in different phases, some more finalised than others. This year Finland was the spotlight country and it was funny to see clips from Finland by e.g. Finnanimation that were shown during breakfast and lunch, on all the forum days.

On Sunday, I arrived together with a few classmates in Toulouse, and rested and explored the city before the forum that started the next day.

The first day of the forum, Monday, was a kind of “Welcome day”. We got welcome bags with Cartoon Forum things and had a few lectures about how to make a good pitch. The first pitch was held by Anttu Harlin, CEO/producer at Gigglebug Entertainment. The second lecture was held by Petteri Pasanen from the animation company Anima. Both lecturers gave insight in their own company, which was really interesting. After the day, there was a big welcome dinner at Les Abbattoirs, which was really fancy, and we got to practice our networking skills.

On Tuesday all the pitches started. During the breakfast Croissant Show, the trailers for the pitches before lunch were shown, and during lunch the pitches that were in the afternoon were shown. This is how the next two days also worked. It really helped me choose which pitches I wanted to see. I started to write down notes during each pitch, so I would remember as much as possible. I paid a lot of attention on how people gave their pitches, and what separated the good pitches from the bad pitches.

On Wednesday after all the pitches there was again a nice dinner, and the possibility to dance if you wanted to. I got to know some French students, which was fun. It was a good way to practice my networking. Thursday was the last day of the pitches, and the day ended a bit earlier than the previous days. In the evening there was a great Finnish themed farewell dinner with some karaoke, which was really fun! On Friday we travelled back to Finland, after a very nice trip! We were many experiences richer than before.

Farewell dinner

Overall, what I learned and gained from this trip, was how important it is to have a good pitch when you get so far as Cartoon Forum or some other big event like it. It’s so frustrating to see talented people throwing away their chance of getting investors, distributors or coproducers, just because they haven’t prepared their pitch at all. You can have a lot of talent and great material, but if you can’t show in a convincing way the reason why somebody should invest in or work for your project, you are walking on thin ice. 

The most common mistake I felt in a pitch was that people talked about irrelevant things that didn’t have anything to do with the project itself. For example, a presenter for the animation project “The Snores”, bragged for many minutes about all the awards her animation company had gotten. Not a good start for the pitch. The best pitch I remember from the event was for an animation series called “In your Face”. The pitch started with a woman telling a story that sparked her idea for the animation. She made the audience laugh, and had very clever remarks. The pitch was engaging from the start until the end.

I learned a lot from this trip, and it was really a once in a lifetime experience.

Text & images by Annika Andersson 2018
Text edits: CF

Anttu Harlin's farewell speech

The first XR Challenge event was held at Mediapolis on Tuesday 18th and Wednesday 19th September. It was organized by Business Tampere and Virtual Reality Finland in collaboration with TAMK, Business Finland and Leonidas, a local company specializing in web and mobile solutions as well as VR and AR implementation. At TAMK the people in charge of production were Jukka Holm and Timo Kivikangas.

The application period for the challenge and the organization itself for the event was earlier this year in spring. Eight finalist teams were chosen from roughly 40 applicants from numerous countries who submitted their initial concepts and ideas, to present their full demos at the event.

With the challenge portion itself being held on Tuesday, six teams that made it to the finals presented 10-minute pitches about their solutions to the range of judges. The jury included representatives from the three participating finnish industrial companies: Valmet, Fastems and Glaston, as well as Leonidas.

The six finalists in order of their pitches were CAM (, Voconaut, Cybercom, Softability, Intopalo and SimLab IT.

The teams presented a variety of carefully planned and developed solutions to the issues presented by the three companies. After the pitches, the finalists presented their demos at their stands in the exhibition area, and the judges met up to discuss and decide on the winners of the challenge.

Day 2, Wednesday, consisted of the open XR seminar, hosted and moderated by writer, actor, improviser and producer Trent Pancy, and an exhibition with 30 different stands showcasing a variety of virtual, augmented and mixed reality demos, gear and solutions. TAMK also had a presence at the exhibition: guests were able to explore a VR art exhibition and a 360º-music video by students from Media and Arts, and a ‘virtual forest’ created by main campus students.

The associations that were showcasing their work were Rakka Creative Oy, TouchDown Creations, Oplatek Group Oy, Tridify Oy, Delta Cygni Labs, VirtualTraveller, Softability Group Oy, Fuusio Labs, Rejlers, VimAI, SMACC, AR Video Booth, Exove Oy, Teatime Research Ltd, Stereoscape Oy, Visuon (Visumo Oy), Realmax Oy, Leonidas Oy, Cybercom, Eligo.Studio Oy, Intopalo Oy, Voconaut and Simlab IT Oy.

In the afternoon, the winners of the challenge were announced on stage at the United Studio. The finalists competed for a total prize sum of 40,000€, with second and third place each receiving 5,000€, and the first place winner getting 30,000€.

3rd place: SimLab IT
2nd place: Manu AR, Teemu Tiainen, Karelia University of Applied Sciences
1st place: Voconaut

Voconaut, a team consisting of sound designers and web developers, claimed the first place prize with their augmented audio technology. It is designed to be utilized in factory environment, allowing for a number of improvements and advantages in different areas of production. The aim is to create a ‘full sonic layer for the client’s environment’ to solve and minimize issues like growing work spaces and visual technology distracting and requiring employees to attend to screens for information. The vision is for ‘ears to become the new screen’, which lets workers receive information tailored to specifically to them on-the-go, resulting in better focus on the task at hand.

Following the announcement of the winners, the seminar continued with lectures from multiple speakers with expertise in the field of VR/AR/XR. The first to speak was Steven M. Lavalle, who is currently a professor at the University of Oulu. He was an early founder american technology company Oculus VR and is the Chief Scientist of VR/AR/MR at Huawei Technologies. His lecture, titled ‘The Harsh Realities of Making XR’ explored the numerous limitations in the field, such as issues with perception, comfort and wirelessness.

Steven LaValle
The second speaker was Antti Kuosmanen, Surface Business Group Lead at Microsoft, with a presentation titled ‘Digital transformations and Mixed reality’, who gave an insightful introduction to the context of digitalization and the steps that are required for developement.

The final presentation was by Markus Heinonen from Varjo Technologies, regarding their solution to the certain issues when it comes to VR such as the narrow field-of-vision which was mentioned by Lavalle earlier in the seminar. Their solution was inspired by the ability of human vision to show clearly and in detail the area which is being focused on, while everything on the periphery is much less detailed. ‘Bionic display’ is the technical implementation of this function, allowing for clearer visuals.

The seminar was livestreamed on Youtube and can still be watched at:

The seminar day concluded with two workshops, one held by XR developers Kari-Pekka Lammi and Jari Nevala from Leonidas, and another by Mika Isomaa, Developer Relations Engineer at Unity Technologies.

All in all, the event had a great turnout with a full house during the seminars, and a range of interesting displays and presentations about virtual, augmented and mixed reality technologies, and will hopefully be organized again next year to give more opportunities for those who are interested in the field, as well as the experts who can apply their knowledge and companies that employ these technologies to better their business.

Article in Finnish on the event by Business Tampere Magazine:

Post by Business Tampere in Finnish:

Text and photos: Hilma Nurmi 2018
Edits of photos: CF

Now that this year’s International week is over we can only wait until next year to experience this eventful week again. The iWeek has been a long tradition in TAMK and each year it has only gotten better. We learn from previous years and aim to improve the event so that all students, visitors, participants, and teachers can enjoy it to the fullest.

The first International week was organized year 2008, then named Tampere Art Factory, TAF. The idea for this type of international event came from our former Head of Degree programme and International coordinator Mr. Cai Melakoski and Head of Fine Arts, Mr. Juha Suonpää. Thanks to them and other active people from those days, TAMK Art, Music and Media is today more international than ever!
-Sohvi Sirkesalo, iWeek blog 2017
The atmosphere on the Mediapolis campus has been inviting and everyone seems to be enjoying themselves. The guests have especially complimented the installations, exhibitions, and performances as it’s interesting to see what the students have worked on. Plenty of stuff was to be seen during the week from games created by the students of the Game Academy, several musical performances to exhibitions and installations all over the campus. International Week is about trying out and experiencing new things and getting a glimpse into other parts of art and creativity.

I took a look at all the exhibitions around the university (paintings, photography and installations), which I found innovative, creative and interesting. They inspired me to work more on my personal "art skills".
               -Tom Busam

More than half of the quests have taken part in iWeek before and a few have participated every year after the event was organized for the first time. The visitors have genuinely enjoyed the experience and keep coming back for more. The iWeek is full of possibilities to get to know people from different countries and create meaningful and useful relationships with others. You get to learn from them and also share your own expertise. 

There’s almost always room for improvement and the possibilities are quite literally endless. Many projects and partnerships can be extended and altered to fit other study path’s needs and so create more opportunities for the students. The workshops were interesting this year and here are some comments from the students about their experiences with them.

The video clips shown in the performances were a mixture of royalty free material & video loops built by the students. Swäg brought along an eclectic mix of television sets, vintage video mixers and VHS cassettes to build the performance rig. It took 3 of us at a time to operate the gear during the performances & I hope that the visuals matched the mood of the music. Anna from 'La Marciana' was very complimentary!
-Andrew Frankton on “Building a visualization system for a live music performance” held by Markku Laskujärvi

I chose this workshop because the topic of social media and the use of social media platforms for business is close and relevant to me. The lecturer, Yuwei Lin, has a broad range of skills and expertise she uses in her position as a senior lecturer of communication, media, and culture. She balanced the workshop well with the equal amount of theory and discussion, and hands-on practice of live streaming.
-Alisa Komendova on “Citizen journalism in the age of live streaming” by Yuwei Lin

This was an interesting workshop with a lot of useful knowledge. We were taught about the art of vocal sketching and also listening different types of sounds at the same time trying to analyse how it made us feel. Some sounds made us feel happy and made us laugh whilst others made us feel uncomfortable and at times irritated.
-Sam Gurung on “Sound, emotion and user experience” held by Antti Jylhä

This workshop was brilliant, Olli was a very helpful leader and really helped you ask what can you do, not what should you do. I can say that workshop was a lot of fun and was a really nice change of pace, from the other work I have been doing this semester. I have worked with electronics before and this was a really nice way of bringing some old skills to the forefront again. This workshop was helpful as I will experiment with using the sounds I can create in my advanced moving image video because it is an easy way to create unique sounds for a weird video.
-Jonathan Keogh on “Circuit bending” held by Olegtron

During the screening of our video’s a compilation of all the work was shown to a jury of three. Afterward every participant had to come to the stage to receive feedback about their short film. I was really a bit overwhelmed by the size of this event but thought it was quite nice to see our works on such a big screen and with good audio. Even though we already had seen most of the video’s, it was a different experience to have them up there. I was nervous to get on the stage, as I didn’t expect it and so hadn’t prepared anything, but the feedback was really good and I was happy to hear that they understood all the different aspects of our video very well.
-Julia Kammen on the screening of the Moving Image minor works

I really enjoyed this workshop as it was not only about creating something new and useful, but mainly about the idea of using trash. There are so many things that can be repaired or built by using the stuff other people would throw away.
-Ronja Bachofer on “Jugaad: Create or transform basic objects using trash materials” held by Tibor Kecskes

One of the development ideas concentrates on the visibility of the event. Not only do we wish that the students join the event, we also want people all over to take interest in it. Internationalization is one of the hot topics in the world at the moment and even though it might seem small in Finland’s scale it has profound consequences for TAMK. People have already heard about Finland so now it’s the time to continue down that road and sell our expertise and innovations. We have a lot to offer in TAMK and it’s something we should pursue.

Another topic of concern is the scheduling. This year the United Studios was bursting with amazing performances and talks but unfortunately, as many of them took place during the day, the people who were taking part in the workshops missed them. There are several possible solutions for this that will be considered for next year’s event. Even so, this year was a success!

This year was the first time that the United Studios was focused on as its own ensemble. The success of the performances was a happy surprise as for many years the people creating the iWeek have thought about what could be organized there. At the Mediapolis campus, we have amazing facilities and spaces at our disposal so it was inspiring to see how they were used in the exhibitions, installations, and performances.

At video screening, I liked how space was organised and also it is really inspiring to see your work screening on the big screen in front of the audience.
               - Konstantin Fedorov

Everyone who worked hard for and during the International Week deserves a wholehearted thank you. Many of the people have been involved for many years now and they know the tricks of the trade and can overcome any problem should any arise. They are prepared and willing to work to make the event memorable for everyone. Students, teachers, lecturers and international visitors all have their part to play in making the event what it is today.

Hope to see you all next year and please as always help us make this event even better!

(Pictures from the iWeeks Facebook page.)

Audiovisuaalisen kulttuurin edistämiskeskuksen julkaiseman AVEK-lehden uunituore numero sisältää painavaa asiaa alan koulutuksesta.

Lehdessä TAMKin käsikirjoituksen lehtori Teppo Nuutinen kertoo Metropolian ja Ylen kanssa luodusta ryhmäkäsikirjoittamisen koulutuksesta eli Virtual Writer's Roomista. VWR-konseptissa käsikirjoituksen opiskelijat kehittävät sarjadraamoja pienryhmissä työskennellen myös virtuaalisesti ZOOM-konferenssiohjelman avulla. Samalla on tutkittu etäryhmätyön etuja ja haasteita luovan työn kannalta.

Ohjauksen ja käsikirjoituksen lehtorimme Arto Koskinen käy läpi pitkän Nokia Mobile -dokumenttinsa opetuksia. Innovaatioiden varassa elävä organisaatio voi tuhoutua ylimielisyyteen, liialliseen sisäiseen kilpailuun ja tehokkuuslukuja palvovaan excel-johtamiseen. Pätee epäilemättä muuallakin kuin matkapuhelinten maailmassa...

Muita näkökulmia tarjoillaan mm. elokuvahistorian opetuksesta (Satu Kyösola), leikkaajasta dokumenttielokuvan  luojana (Iikka Vehkalahti) ja siitä, miten voi opettaa sellaista jota ei vielä ole (Susanna Helke). Lehdessä kerrotaan myös tuotantokannustimista ja Tampereen tavoitteesta nousta AV-alan Mekaksi.

AVEK-lehden kansi 1/18
AVEK on Suomen tärkein lyhytelokuvien ja mediataiteen rahoittaja, joka tukee myös alan kehitystoimintaa ja kulttuurivientiä. AVEK-lehden uusimman numeron pääsee lukemaan tästä linkistä:

The last day of the workshops came to an end. It was exciting to see what people created during these three days. Some workshops lasted only for one or two days so some participants had the chance to take part in multiple workshops.

The International Coordinator Sohvi Sirkesalo with some of the guests at iWeek.

This year they really put effort into the creating this event. You might wonder how long it takes to organize an event like the International Week and the answer is that no one really knows. It’s an ever-changing situation where problems will always arise but fortunately the team this year has been incredible and has managed to overcome everything they’ve encountered.

Especially the performances and installations/exhibitions in the United Studios have been well thought and organized. So much to see and experience and luckily you had the whole week to go around. The variety of the acts was also a good thing, a little bit of something for everyone.

Live streaming at the iWeek. (Picture taken from the International Week's Facebook page.)

The "Citizen journalism in the age of live streaming" - by Yuwei Lin workshop had its participants live stream their day. On the video, you can see a part of the Musical: No one’s rib that took part in the United Studios in the morning. The participants went around the Mediapolis campus visiting other workshops and reporting live on what was going on. They talked to other people and asked what they had been doing and what they thought about the workshops. The general atmosphere is overwhelming while people are working on their projects and assignments for the workshops.

And here are the last of the summaries of the workshops, do enjoy!

"Sound, Emotion, and User Experience" - by Antti Jylhä (The Hague UAS, NL), only on Thursday from 9 am till 1 pm.

This workshop deals with the relationship between sound and emotion in regards to user experiences. In the workshop, the participants will practice the art of sketching emotional sounds with their voices and by listening understand the emotions behind different sounds. With engaging exercises, they will uncover a massively disregarded potential of sound in user experience design.

"Environment Art" - By Jakub Malinovski (University of Arts in Poznan), Tuesday to Thursday from 9 am till 4 pm.

This workshop aims to use the creative strength and the ideas of students to go through the existing ideas and thoughts around everyday environment of the city and surrounding nature. There are many visual, social and urban phenomenon hidden around us. The idea is to form groups and process ideas and thoughts together. The goal of the workshop is to come up with propositions of artworks locate in real space using imaging tools such as AR visualization.

"The Entheogenic Machine" - By Fabián Barros (ORT University, Uruguay), only on Wednesday from 9 am till 3 pm.

The entheogenic machine workshop explores the popular religious art on the Internet in its most basic visual expression: animated gif and jpg. These images are interpreted and contextualized to facilitate contact with one's inner divinity by using digital technology. It is not very complex and uses mostly obsolete and low-cost technology. The result of the workshop could, for example, be a multimedia installation that will be shown during the International Week.

Songwriting Pitching ( a co-write music collaboration between students from TAMK and Academy of Pop Culture in Netherlands) feedback session in the United Studios.

The presentations are over for the day and thing are being wrapped up in the United Studios as well. Tomorrow there will be the Friday Seminar which will be answering to the question “Who do we think we are? IDENTITY, DIVERSITY, EQUALITY –co-creation, smart cities with human beings” hosted by Albert van der Kooij. There will be several speakers sharing their experience, so do come and listen.

Thank you for being a part of this and see you again next year!

People trying the games made by the Game Academy students, what a turnout!

The second day of the iWeek started with the continuation of the workshops from the previous day. In the United Studios the students from the Game Academy showcased the games they have been working on. Later you could try the games in the orange lobby where also the Virtual Gallery could be experienced. Some of the games shown were about jousting, breaking stuff as a cat, a multiplayer FPS with water guns and being a thief.

During the day in the United Studios there has been quite many musical performances by a variety of artists and bands from different countries as well as poem reciting. There has also been some lectures about music related topics such as karaoke diplomacy. Today is definitely full of music and chilling to the tunes.

Catalan musician Xavi presenting his first EP "Full Honesty".

You can find amazing exhibitions and installations all over the school. The second floor showcases most of the exhibitions. The installations of the advanced sound design workshop 2018 can be found in both the first and the second floor. 

The installation by Aaro Arvola named Rough mixdown can be found on the first floor in the orange lobby. On the second floor there are the Disco box done by Eetu Tähtinen in the rooms 20019 and 20018 and the Disorder simulations by Polina Hameltoja and Pauli Ondruska in the room 20011. 

Liya Pirkuliyeva experiencing the Advanced Sound Design workshop piece "In heaven, all they talk about is the ocean" done by Kate Vasileva.

There’s the UNPOLISHED exhibition which features photo art from the photography minor and takes place in the 2nd floor corridor during the iWeek. In the photography study module students created a photo art book on a topics chosen by them. Themes of projects vary from a haptic taste of chocolate to the existence of human in the universe. 

The other exhibition WET PAINT showcases drawings and paitings in Mediapolis 2nd Floor, rooms 20012, 20034, 20063 and 20064. The pieces of works are done by the students in the Drawing and Painting minor.

“Like wet paint, we are fluid and unfixed. Fresh and new, anything is possible.”
A quote from the students.

The last performance of the day is by none other than our very own Eeverest, Niko Mansikka-aho. He’s a Finnish student at TAMK Music Production study path who has been working as a DJ and a producer and is based in Tampere. So hope everyone is ready to dance to his music!

And as in the last post, here are some summaries about the ongoing workshops. Hope everyone is enjoying and gaining information and skills from the ones they are participating in!

"Connected Neighborhoods: diverse_CITY" - by Graham Cooper, Martyn Thayne (University of Lincoln, UK) and Anne Karen (Academy of Pop Culture, Hanze University, NL), from Wednesday to Thursday between 9 am and 4 pm.

This workshop is about exploring the global / local landscape and look at the key players / participants / neighbours in a collaborative manner. The landscape is ever expanding and increasingly diverse. The participants of the workshop will use design and discussion to explore and celebrate the different aspects of the cities. The task is to use playful and creative means to showcase the diversity within our surroundings.

“Jugaad: create or transform basic objects using trash materials!” - By Tibor Kecskes (TK Studio), from Tuesday to Thursday between 10 am and 4 pm.

Jugaad is a wide spread activity especially in the developing countries for upcycling broken constructions or creating basic objects using trash / simple materials. The idea is to support upcycling / repairing items instead of throwing them away. The results of the creative minds and able hands of the participants will be shown in the form of an exhibition and / or presented. It’s interesting to see if they can see the hidden potential in so called trash objects and materials!

"Citizen journalism in the age of live streaming" - by Yuwei Lin (University of Stirling, UK), Tuesday to Thursday from 9 am to 12 pm.

If you have ever wanted to learn how to report an event live this workshop is for you. The event can be anything and in the workshop there will be used a variety of social media tools to explore the possibilities. The participants will go through how to prepare, what to cover, how to source the content, maintain audience interests and ethics around live reporting.

Be sure to follow the Facebook page of the TAMK 11th International Week for more live updates during the week. Also, there will be a summary posted about the daily activities every evening in the TAMK Arts and Media blog.