Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Windows in Time

Understanding Gettysburg through Multimedia

During the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg last month, I came across the historical artist and good acquaintance Dan Nance, who was exhibiting a new and rather innovative approach of touring the battlefield.  He and artists Keith Rocco and Bradley Schmehl teamed up to design a fresh and engaging smart phone and Ipad application that allows you to artistically visualize what pivotal events happened on key pieces of terrain throughout the park.  Standing in the Herbst Woods on July 1, Dan exhibited the app to me.  By aligning the sight on his Ipad with one of Schmehl's paintings, reality and historical art overlapped to offer a unique sense of place.

As the product description notes, "[t]his GPS-enabled App allows you to witness over 30 battles scenes through historical paintings that dramatically come alive on the spot! After directing you to your chosen site, this unique App immediately turns your device into a window to the past. A simple click opens your camera lens where a dynamic painting of the battle comes into view in an overlay on the exact location of where the event occurred. Filled with a combination of sights, sounds and the breathtaking artwork of acclaimed historical artists, this multi-media approach will give you a memorable history lesson in a sensational way."

"Dan Nance, historical artist and founder of Hand Held History, notes 'This new App provides users with a truly never-before seen way of touring Gettysburg, both in and out of the classroom. Combining historical artwork and an innovative use of technology, users can now witness the battle action in the footsteps of those who fought here."

This colorful means of exploring Gettysburg will offer something for experts and novices alike.  Additional features include detailed battle maps and troop positions, historical narration, commentary by battlefield guides, artist biographies, and camera options to share your experiences with friends.  Be sure to examine the screen shots below to see how the app works.  The product is now available on iTunes.  You battlefield buffs will find it an affordable and useful investment on your many excursions.

This battlefield app allows you to follow in the footsteps of specific Civil War units on some of Gettysburg's most contested terrain.  Some three dozen paintings guide your journey.
Windows in Time permits you to overlay the site in front of you with an artistic and historical rendition of 1863.

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