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Facebook & Sea Monster Present: Spark AR Day

Facebook, in partnership with Sea Monster hosted its first local workshop for developers, marketers, and other creative minds working in the digital sector to teach them how to expertly use Spark AR in their work.

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Earlier this month, Facebook announced that it is expanding its Camera Effects Platform to Instagram, making it the biggest Augmented Reality (AR) platform on the planet. The platform, which allows users to overlay digital items into their real-world surroundings, is all part of what Facebook says is its bid to “remove barriers between people across space and time”.

As part of this plan, Facebook hosted its first local workshop for developers, marketers, and other creative minds working in the digital sector to teach them how to expertly use AR in their work. To help with the lessons, the social media giant brought in Sea Monster, one of South Africa’s top animation studios. Sea Monster has already worked with Facebook on several projects, including the Soweto Derby AR Studio activation.

With AR Studio, new and unique experiences can be created without using any new hardware or specialised apps. The studio helps create experiences that are moving well beyond animations, masks and playful enhancements, to more immersive and interactive 3D experiences that tap into and augment the entire world.

The event comprised of one day of learning sessions, in which marketers and creators could obtain all the information regarding how Spark AR works and the best ways to use it. The following two days saw the young creators, using these skills learned on the first day, creating amazing effects with Facebook Spark AR Studio in hackathon-style. Sea Monster lead the way by creating our own effect for the hackathon to inspire the creators and show what is possible. WeThinkCode won first prize with their maths game effect, while Friends of Design took second place for their zombie game effect.

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Consumer brands and enterprise B2B vendors must understand and get ready for augmented reality. These technologies will play an important part in digital transformation efforts of many organisations. Sea Monster has been developing award-winning and highly-innovative interactive experiences using Augmented Reality since 2011, and is widely regarded as one of the leading AR studios in Africa.

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