What's in the box?

‘A new (0ld) formula for creativity:

Banish the blank page.

Begin with a sheet overflowing with someone else’s thoughts, images, words. Erase, rephrase, redact, resuscitate and create something new’ - Shore, R. (p.4, 2017)


In this brief we are required to use an identifiable source to respond and develop from. My outcome should be inspired by the source and should show the development and references to the inspiration.

Initially when given the brief, I wanted to use an identifiable source that is not used directly in the creative industry. Through brainstorming, I have moved more into the direction of incorporating ideas from studies that specialise in understanding the study of human behavior, due to my recent curiosity. Through basing my project on a previous phycological behavior study, I should be able to implement ideas and experiment with dependent factors that could help with the understanding of what can create an immersive experience for storytelling.


Online I wanted to explore a range of famous Psychologists and I came across Whilhem Wundt [1]. He was a ground-breaking physician from the twentieth century, who created the foundations of modern day psychology. Wundt categorised psychology as a separate subdivision of science, instead of it being a subdivision of philosophy. In 1874, Wundt published the ‘Principles of Physiological Psychology’.

Physiological Psychology

This can be a study of human behavior through a physiological impact. This particular approach can help us learn about how the brain and nervous system work, as well as how our immediate environment can affect our behavior.

Wundt tried to describe what was going on in the processes of mind. Into two major categories[3]:

Wundt wanted the ‘raw’ interpreted data. Through using ‘concepts from the world of external experience, which had their immediate origin in sense-perception.’ [4]

Wundt’s Methodology- Experimental Introspection

With Wundt’s students, he trained them to report observations of mental events in consciousness instead of assuming from memory.


He believed that is was a ‘stimulus error’ when perceptions are reported from introspection instead of sensations. Wundt’s approach was anti-metaphysical, meaning that he believed we should only analyse the data that we’ve got in front of us. This is a powerful way of assessing information, as it means that you will not assume based on what you know.


Through researching into the ideas of Whilhem Wundt, I want to develop and explore how people use immediate and mediate reactions naturally.

Many of us analyse data metaphysically due to stereotypes and assumptions from certain visual connections. The way objects are presented can significantly manipulate our perception of assuming how meaningful it may be to ourselves. This is reflected in a lot of consumer behavior; for example, when people are food shopping, many will instinctively choose products that they can trust based on their previous experience of using them. This idea has been used by supermarkets such as Aldi, through creating very similar looking products to famous brands, to help buy their alternative products. Due to the way shops analyse consumer as more of a metaphysical choice, it is likely and less common that people in their everyday lives will pick only from an immediate choice of products.



Through testing people’s reactions and blocking them visually, this should help to reduce their immediate reaction, causing them to have a weaker perception of what object is they are touching. Though using well known objects, the participants should still be familiar with the shapes and textures. However, it should reduce the time for that person to become familiarised with the object, resulting in them having to use their immediate reaction. To show peoples reactions, I will create my outcome as a video, as it will show the participant’s facial and body reaction as well as what they say.

I believe that an effective way to do this is to create a box for people to put their hand into, as it will stop them from being able to see what is in there, forcing them feel and describe the way they should think more in depth. Below shows how I experimented with the composition to see what would be the most suitable. Prior to drawing these ideas, I booked the filming studio, and so I had a rough idea of what the scene will look like.


Through assessing possibilities with the composition, I decided to keep the box in as the focus in the shot, as it will help the focus to stay on what is inside the box, allowing the person to move accordingly to their reaction.


(click right)

I decided to create a box for the video, so I was able to make it to the exact size to fit the video. When designing the box, I wanted to make sure that it is high enough so that participant will have to reach into the box to feel it.

Reaction Prediction

I believe that the participants will overall find it difficult to explain their immediate reactions and will most likely assume what the objects are. Linking to ‘the fear of the unknown’ some may try to associate the textures with objects they know to help to familiarize with touch.

Above shows the setting up of the project. I had to work with the technician to set up all of the lighting, as well as ensuring that the sound and camera was on the correct settings to create the minimalistic look as planned. I decided to edit the video on Adobe Premier Pro as it allowed me to cut and move around the audio and video with ease.


Overall, I am very pleased with my outcome as I was able to follow through from my planning. Interviewing a variety of participants, helped me to receive a large range of reactions. As assumed with my prediction, many of the candidates found it easier to question their assumptions with objects they could familarise their senses with. Also some of the participants gave their mediate reaction for when I asked for their immediate reaction.

Unfortunately for Wundt’s theory, many people naturally follow metaphysical reactions, meaning that we naturally have perceptions on what we can see or feel. To combat this, creating an immersive experience containing unfamiliarity may create a broader sense of anti-metaphysical.

Developing on from Wundt’s findings, I have learnt how using particular objects can dramatically alter the type of reaction. In development of this assignment, I want to explore how to potentially create an immersive experience through testing in further depth, as well as understanding how immediate reactions can be created without assuming particular aspects completely.


[1] TheFamousPeople.com, U. (2018). Who is Wilhelm Wundt? Everything You Need to Know. [online] The Famous People. Available at: https://www.thefamouspeople.com/profiles/wilhelm-wundt-6565.php [Accessed 20 Oct. 2018].
[2] Magnolia Box. (2018). Portrait of German psychologist Wilhelm Wundt. [online] Available at: https://www.magnoliabox.com/products/portrait-of-german-psychologist-wilhelm-wundt-xdr355855 [Accessed 21 Oct. 2018].
[3] Landrum, D. (2018). Wundt and the Founding of Psychology. [online] YouTube. Available at: https://youtu.be/S6HT2LCZLaU [Accessed 21 Oct. 2018].
[4] Wundt, W. (1918). Principles of Physiological Psychology. 1st ed. Germany: Рипол Классик, 1969, p.17.
[5] Verywellmind.com. (2018). Image. [online] Available at: https://www.verywellmind.com/thmb/UEcLQvxxWTgbZU-NBcjUE4CkUrA=/768x0/filters:no_upscale():max_bytes(150000):strip_icc()/Wundt-lab-56a791693df78cf772972e66.jpg [Accessed 22 Oct. 2018].
[6] Williams, D. (2018). Is Aldi packaging brand plagiarism? - Print & Marketing Blog. [online] Blog.print-print.co.uk. Available at: https://www.blog.print-print.co.uk/is-aldi-packaging-brand-plagiarism/ [Accessed 22 Oct. 2018].

© 2023 by Josephine Miller