A Horror Film in AR: “Seem / Ceiling” by kiyotaka watanabe

What Do We See In Our Screen…?

Seem / Ceiling by interactive engineer kiyotaka watanabe is an augmented reality (AR) work based on the concept of an interactive horror movie.

– Horrors hiding in everyday things come to life and are “captured on film”

The genre of horror is often seen in films and manga, but one thing that I have recently noticed is how often the horrors depicted are things that are from our daily lives. When we stop for a moment and take a good hard look at the things and places around us, suddenly a sense of inexplicable fear arises.

When you look at the ceiling in your own house, for example.

There might be something there. If you set up a camera, something might be captured.

This piece is designed to bring those fears to life.

─Via the official NEWVIEW Website

As you launch the scene, you see pools of blood on the floor. Although what’s shown is still your room, the screen is dark and blurry. You get the chilling feeling that you are stuck in a horror movie.

Looking up at the ceiling, you see a disturbing, black stain which is probably where the blood on the floor came from. The black stain gradually fades and disappears.

You notice something moving at the corner of your eye, so you look back at the floor…you see an ominous shadow—in the shape of a creature—moving towards you at lightning speed…

In a moment of horror, the screen turns to noise, and you are never to see the bloodcurdling shadow again. What was it…?

An Immersive Horror Film

The concept of this piece is “an experiential horror movie”.

As someone who uses AR to create their pieces, I always create with the possibility of AR in mind, not only as a way to use existent media, but as something that could itself be a genre in film and manga. As such, this piece has taken inspiration from horror films, since I wanted it to be a piece of horror in itself, rather than something that is “great for an AR”.

This is one piece in a series.

The ultimate aim is for this series to expand and really capture the various essences of our daily lives, and for those who have experienced things to continue spreading the horror. Much like the video curse of Sadako, as seen in The Ring, I aimed to create this piece to infectiously spread through the medium of SNS.

─Via the official NEWVIEW Website

Horror Transmitted from the Smartphone to the People

One of the most popular horror films in Japan is Ring (1998), which became a huge hit and caused a social phenomenon with its urban legend setting, where a curse is spread through watching VHS tapes.

Times have changed, VHS tapes and VCR players have disappeared, and now everyone watches and shares videos on their smartphones. Like Sadako’s cursed video in Ring, Seem / Ceiling is aimed to be a “contagious”, frightening experience shared through social media.

Seem / Ceiling is a part of a series of works that are aimed to be “projected” and “transmitted” from person to person in various everyday situations. When this horror experience suddenly appears on your social media timeline, that will be the moment when a new horror film begins.

How to Experience an AR Scene

If you are accessing this page from a smartphone, tap the “Try Now” button.
If you are using STYLY for the first time, please also refer to the instructions below.Try Now

After tapping “Try Now,” you will be redirected to a page like below.
If you have already downloaded the STYLY Mobile app, select “Activate in STYLY app.”

If you are accessing this page from a PC web browser, first click the “Try Now” button to open the scene page.
Then, in the scene page, click “Experience in AR” and scan the QR code with your smartphone to launch the scene on the STYLY Mobile app.


Download the STYLY Mobile app



For those who want to know more about how to experience the scene:
For more information on how to experience AR scenes, please refer to the following article.

Edited by SASAnishiki
Translated by cpnnn