Comvita Mixed Reality Honey Tasting

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  • 2022

  • Digital

Designed By:

  • Danielle Barclay, Creative Director
  • Preston Thomas, Technical Director
  • Craig McKay, Creative Technologist
  • Justin Fels, Motion Graphics Designer

Commissioned By:

Comvita Limited

Designed In:

New Zealand

We created a 10 minute sensploration honey tasting using mixed reality to connect people to nature and educate them on the health benefits of the honey through an immersive journey through nature. The experience is designed to travel globally to tell Comvita’s unique brand story.


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Image: Mara Sommer
Image: Mara Sommer
Image: Mara Sommer
  • CHALLENGE
  • SOLUTION
  • IMPACT
  • MORE
  • Our challenge was to create a portable brand experience by translating a 180 degree projected honey tasting experience into a mixed reality headset using game design techniques, animation and augmented reality. Moving from two to three dimensions required a redesign of the experience, considering the physical elements of the table and honey tray as well as the timing of each chapter of content to engage the audience.

  • Connecting to all senses was key to our design solution. We enhanced the taste of honey with a connection to nature through integrating a character, animation and audio content with the real environment. We created a digital beekeeper character to guide users through the experience with facial and body share design carefully considered to suit the target audience. A forest portal was designed with depth to house animated content and enhanced with 3D flying elements including fog, bees and flavours. We created a 3D forest scene surrounding the user and also used tasting spoon tracking effects to enhance the tasting.

  • The experience was launched at Dubai World Expo in January 2022 to an international audience. The level of immersion and emotional connection was unexpected with 100% of users saying they would recommend the experience to friends using words like magical, engaging, incredible, powerful and beautiful to describe it. Microsoft promoted the project globally as a case study due to its unique blend of physical and digital multi sensory worlds. The solution is a powerful tool for Comvita to grow their audience globally as it transports customers to the source of their natural product reinforcing the efficacy and quality.

  • The audio visual layer was carefully designed to connect the audience to nature and flavour and heighten the neurological experience. Each flavour was carefully prepared and captured in slow motion to give the audience a sense of flying through them. We recreated an entire landscape in 3D to enable us to give visitors the sensation of flying into a beehive. We worked with a leading gastrophysicist to interpret tasting notes into audio visual cues that would heighten the neurological connection for the theatre audience. The accompanying soundscape was composed from recordings of bees in nature and envelopes the senses in an orchestral way.