Empowering Voices Through XR: A Deep Dive with Michaela Ternasky-Holland”
Today, I’m thrilled to welcome Michaela Ternasky-Holland, an Emmy and Webby award-winning director renowned for her groundbreaking work in immersive and interactive storytelling. Michaela’s expertise in XR (Extended Reality) and the metaverse has positioned her as a leading voice in using technology for social impact.
In this episode, Michaela shares her journey as an XR/metaverse creator, consultant, and speaker. Her work, featured by prestigious brands and organizations like Disney, TIME, Forbes, and the Tribeca Film Festival, focuses on creative strategy and impact production. We delve into how she leverages VR (virtual reality), AR (augmented reality), and XR for purpose-driven projects, addressing global issues like nuclear weapons and gun violence and advocating for diversity in storytelling.
Michaela discusses her recent project, “MAHAL,” a VR film that was a finalist for the VR Film of the Year. This film exemplifies her commitment to championing underrepresented voices and cultures. We explore the nuances of creating impactful educational experiences using VR and AR and how these technologies can evoke emotional responses and drive real-world change.
Michaela emphasizes the need for equitable distribution of resources and opportunities, working with international organizations to promote global engagement in XR. We also touch upon radical inclusivity and community involvement in XR technologies, discussing the potential for behavior change through immersive VR experiences.
Further into our discussion, Michaela shared insights into the technical challenges of creating VR content using tools like Oculus Quill. She highlighted the potential of XR technologies in promoting mental well-being and mindfulness while acknowledging the need for caution regarding their impact on the brain.
As we look towards the future, Michaela expresses her interest in generative AI and developing clean, sustainable technology. Our conversation also covers the broader implications of technology on the environment and society.
Michaela’s journey is not just about technology; it’s about empowering voices and creating meaningful change. Her story is an inspiration to anyone interested in the transformative power of XR and the responsibility that comes with it.