Recently, we featured We Are Matik’s Smile-Bot and luckily we had the chance to ask Carver Wilcox of We Are Matik a couple questions about running the studio, working with clients and how they come up with such awesome projects.
Who are We Are Matik, and could you tell our readers who might not know you what you do?
We Are Matik is a Los Angeles based creative studio. We specialize in multisensory design, interactive experiences and experiential campaigns that create engaging and unconventional ways for brands to reach their audiences through unforgettable moments.
How did your studio get started?
We are a team of individuals from a variety of backgrounds with a passion for bridging the digital and dimensional which is how we ultimately came together. Interaction doesn’t always have to happen through a screen so we came together with that concept in mind: to create transmedia experiences that bridge emerging technologies (the digital) to the real world (dimensional). With our creative team of designers, technologists and brand strategists, we are able to weave all of these aspects together in such a unique way that we look at the culmination of all of our abilities as something like Voltron.
When taking on a collaborative project, how do you decide who you should work with? What do you look for in a collaborator/partner?
We definitely like to collaborate with clients and creatives that are interested in pushing boundaries. Since what we do is part of an emerging industry, it helps to have a potential partner that is open to taking things in a new direction and can bring something unique to the table.
You guys have come up with some crazy awesome interactive projects, one of which we just recently posted, Smile-Bot. What’s the process like for these projects to come to fruition?
There really is no defined method as to how we approach projects but we believe it is important for us to try to see something again for the first time as a child would because that unlocks the true creative potential.
We have a passion for deciphering emerging and pre-existing technologies so that people can experience a story or a message in a new way. To achieve that requires a lot of testing to make sure everything functions properly and research to make sure the message or story resonates with our target audience– ultimately making the entire experience magical and a seamless part of reality.
What have been some challenges you’ve come across when working on your projects, whether technical or between yourselves and clients?
Since what we do does not come in a particular format or pre-set medium, it is important for us to educate the client or collaborator on what we are capable of and how multisensory design and experiences can communicate a message to their audience in an immersive and interactive way.
In regards to working as a team, it’s like being in a band: by playing together regularly you begin to develop a sense for each other’s rhythm and ultimately function as one unit. We strive to develop this sort of relationship with our clients and collaborators.
What sort of things outside of the design bubble inspire you?
Music, movies, food, culture, memes, meditation, art… really anything that challenges our current perception of reality.
What advice would you give to aspiring interactive designers?
Keep it weird. Remember that the industry of interactive immersive experiences is in its infancy and is ever evolving. Don’t let others tell you what is right and what is wrong, they might just be seeing something they that they aren’t comfortable with yet. Follow your instincts — and be true to yourself and your vision.
Lastly, what is your dream project?
Rather than a particular project, we are very interested in aligning ourselves with movements that inspire people across cultural and geographical borders regardless of the medium. We have a proclivity for emerging technologies, but what we really want to do is tell great stories through how we use them.