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Why I’m learning VR, and you should too

Article by Greta Gotlieb
Wednesday, May 16, 2018

So VR is something I’ve wanted to get into for about two years now. My first experience with VR was back in 2016 at a Semi Permanent Event in Auckland, I stumbled across the Green Fairy VR experience, and although this is a VR animated story aimed at children let's just say I must be the biggest kid as I was blown away! I knew right then that VR is something so special, and that I definitely wanted to explore VR for creative projects of my own. So you may ask why did it take you two whole years until you started learning VR? Well let’s just say there are many ways to get into VR and you have to figure out the pathway that works best for you in your situation, but now I’m well on my way to step one!

So to fill you in a bit about my background, let’s just say I’m wasn’t the most academic person in highschool. Thankfully highschool gave me enough mediocre design, web and photography skills to and a stint at AUT University where I got a Bachelor of graphic design. I then got hugely into Zines which a small magazine style publications, and I started my own music and culture zine called Presence in 2008. Insert pictures here… Which I did for about 6 years, it’s currently on a hiatus.

So after Uni I joined the world of work, I built some websites, did some graphic design. I also worked at Groove Guide and Rip It Up magazine for three and a half years, let’s just say I have an extensive print portfolio, boxes upon boxes of magazines underneath my parents house.

So now I’m back in web design and software UX, I also teach Girl Code part-time and I’ve been a self employed freelancer now for about four years and whiich brings you up to date. Woah! Time flies when you're allowed to stay in your PJs until midday.

So now you know a bit about my career path another reason for my motivation in doing VR. Future proofing my career! Let’s just say platforms like SquareSpace are getting so good! Like crazy good. You don’t really need any coding skills to have a fantastic website. So that leaves me (a web designer) with refocusing my skills into things like online strategy, content curation and software UX/CX which are all good options for me, but I also want to get back into doing some more creative projects and VR is a very exciting and experimental platform.

So yeah, my main reasons for learning VR would be for experimenting with creative projects, future proofing my career and learning a new skill that really blows my mind. So are you also considering learning VR? Do you have similar motivations to learn it as I do?

Another reason I can motivate you to learn could be to do it along with me! Hello my potential study buddies!

So I’ve enrolled myself in the Udacity VR Developer Nanodegree which is six months long of approximately ten hours a week. I’ll put the link to the course below. I’ve also bought myself an Oculus Go so you can expect another video on that soon.

One last thing I want to say is I’m not the most gifted coder, I learn things at a slow and steady pace, but I’m stubborn like a scrappy marathon runner who won’t give up, I enjoy problem solving and get satisfaction in making things work. So I feel like if you are a tenacious person who is interested in VR you too can learn Unity and C#, I mean what have we got to lose? Right? Apart from our sanity. But that was already marginal at best.

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