Come Out & Play is a first-of-its kind annual festival of real world games and play that I started in New York (2006) and San Francisco (2010). It sparked a movement of similar festivals around the globe in places like London, Greece, Berlin, and Pittsburgh. Most events are free, all-ages, and open to the public. I'm currently building out programming, establishing partnerships, and curating artists for 2016 to make the San Francisco festival more compelling, accessible, and pervasive than ever.
Mission: The Come Out & Play Festival seeks to provide a forum for new types of public games and play. We want to bring together a public eager to rediscover the world around them through play with designers interested in producing innovative new games and experiences. Oh yeah, and we want to have city-size fun.
Awards: 2008 Diana Jones Award for Excellence in Gaming, 2012 SOMArts Curatorial Residency, 2012 Awesome Foundation Grantee, 2013 San Francisco Arts Commission Grantee (Cultural Equity)
My roles: Co-Founder (NYC: 2006), Volunteer Director (NYC: 2006-2008), Partnership and Artistic Director (NYC: 2009), Founder (SF: 2010), Advisor (SF: 2013-2015), Executive Director (SF: 2010-2012, 2016+).
Since 2011, Woodcut Maps has transformed locative data into wood-inlay artwork. Our simple and fun online design tool allows anyone to design a beautiful custom wood-inlay map of any place in the world. Each map is made-to-order with love and lasers in San Francisco by master woodworkers. They are amazingly intimate works of art that commemorate important place-based memories like weddings and graduations.
We also teach playful DIY classes in our Bayview studio. Each student creates a high quality custom wood-inlay map artwork of their own design in less than 3 hours - and has a great time along the way!
My roles: Co-Founder, Product Designer, Service Designer, Director of Operations.
Awards: Innovation Award (SF Small Business Network, 2014), Editor's Choice (Maker Faire, 2012), Winner (DYMAX REDUX, Buckminster Fuller Institute, 2013).
Check it out: woodcutmaps.com
I have worked professionally as a Studio Lead, Senior Producer, Game Designer and Product Manager for a number of established and innovative game companies since 2003. I specialize in games for broad audiences on accessible platforms like tablets, mobile devices, and Facebook, but I have also worked with emerging hardware such as the Nintendo Wii and Sifteo Cubes. Some of the game companies I've worked for include Gamelab, Sifteo, Electronic Arts and Zynga. Game-specific credits include (among dozens others) Diner Dash, Jojo's Fashion Show, Ayiti: The Cost of Life, Spartacus: The Game, Chroma Splash and Looney Tunes Dash!
Studio class on Play for interaction design majors in their junior year. Covers popular psychology and game design fundamentals like types of play, MDA (mechanics, dynamics, aesthetics), dynamic systems, emergence, affordances, agency and meaningful choice, setting game goals, the magic circle, and flow. The goal is to have the students believe in play, unpack play, and wield the power of play in their work. Students tend to go on to careers in UX, internet of things, service design, etc.
Play is fundamental to the human experience. It occurs in every culture and is now appearing in nearly every digital interaction. Building on the narrative foundation of Time Studio students will gain exposure to and appreciation for the many facets of gaming and play in interaction design including game dynamics, themes, genre, roles, competition, and levels of engagement to name a few. Students will develop craft skills while designing playful and delightful interactions with objects such as games, toys, social interfaces, exhibits, spaces and unlimited new contexts. The sequence of individual and group projects in this course will enable students to tailor their course experience in ways that match their goals: from designing video games to location-aware mobile experiences to massive multi-player real-world gaming to creating and applying play for entertainment as well as new areas such as health, education, government and beyond.
Mobile website to deliver on-demand walking tours between any two locations, based on how much time you have. Led design process and usability tests.
Designed and launched in 2009 with Gabe Smedresman.
My roles: Co-Founder, UX Designer, User Researcher.
No longer active.
A series of original live-action cowgirl games played in Bristol UK, Berlin, New York City, San Francisco and San Jose from 2009-2012. Mechanics and roleplay inspired by themes around frontierism, gender, identity, and celebrity.
My roles: Game Designer, World Designer, Lead Cowgirl.
Awards: Creative Capital Grantee (2009)
The sci-fi classic, brought to life as an epic live-action street game for over 250 players in the alleys of San Francisco. Included four gameplay arcs, a mid-game objective shift, functioning LED lifeclocks, and surreal encounters to underscore key story themes. I created this game in collaboration with my husband, Gabe Smedresman, in celebration of his 30th birthday.
My role: Co-Director, Game Designer.
Photos by Anna Vignet.
A street game set in the multiverse.
In a multiverse where up to 10 alternate yous exist, you must chase and defeat your alternates, absorb their power, and make them your minions. To do so, you’ll share information with other players in your universe and exchange powers with other players in alternate universes.
Who will destroy all of their alternates and become “THE ONE”?
Collaboration with Gabe Smedresman.
My roles: Co-Director, Game Designer, Production Designer.