I think I have mentioned a few times a collateral project I worked on in the second half of 2011: The Odyssey for the iPad. (The iPhone was not considered from the start due to its smaller size). The project was born as a serious attempt at making an artistic and fiercely poetic version of the Odyssey, based on the original drawing and literary research by Joma, a Barcelona based artist, and on the original music by Xavier Maristany, a Barcelona based musician.
In the end, we decided to cancel the project due to lack of funding (and the Odyssey is ha huge work, we would have needed funding for at least 2 years work), but I think that the outcome, although only a prototype (hence of prototype-level quality and refinement) is worth describing here.
The basic idea is illustrating the Odyssey through the selection of its main stories, events, characters. To give an idea of the size of this work, suffices it to say that we were planning on having about 350 drawings. Each drawing was thought as a mixture of images and the greek text associated to the image, and the really clever part was the way in which the text and the drawing fit together.
Here you can see an image from the prototype and understand what I mean.
Each scene was meant to have some kind of animation, graphical effect, interaction, and music. By rotating the device, you could get a more traditional book-like view of the Odyssey, based on its text.
So, with all this in mind, I built a framework to:
- display and browse a set of PDF files (each file was meant to cover one of the 24 Odyssey books) containing the base layout (header, footer, text, default image);
- enrich the PDF view by displaying on top of it an animation (conceived as a sequence of PNGs), or an OpenGL scene, or a Cocos2D scene, or a video;
- play a background music associated to a PDF file, plus a specific musical comment for each given page.
Apart from the framework, we worked out a couple of scenes as a proof of concept, and this also gave me the chance to integrate in the prototype some cool Cocos2D animation effects and an Open GL 3D panoramic view.
Since the app is just a prototype and cannot be made available through the App Store, recently, I made a video of it. It is not professionally-crafted, but it gives you an idea of what our Odyssey for the iPad could look like. If there are any interested investors out there…
Watch a trailer of The Odyssey for iPad here.