While I was a human-computer interaction researcher, I often turned used art projects to escape, inspire, and ground my research, and incorporated inquiries into artistic practices and outcomes into my research.
Drawing for Non-Majors, taught by Kristen Kovak (2016). I signed up for this course to get a "break" from my research and human-computer interaction coursework, but instead found it to be one of my most challenging and rewarding courses. Below are some selected projects I made for the class. I also discuss the monster vending machine and its influence on my research in the preface of my dissertation.
Vending machine monster I made for the course, vending fortunes (and snacks) meant to unsettle and encourage people to suspend disbelief momentarily.
Vending machine monster I made for the course, vending fortunes (and snacks) meant to unsettle and encourage people to suspend disbelief momentarily.
Example of a fortune received from the machine.
Example of a fortune received from the machine.
Figure drawing sketch.
Figure drawing sketch.
Charcoal drawing, influenced by Francisco de Goya and German expressionism.
Charcoal drawing, influenced by Francisco de Goya and German expressionism.
Alien Capture Project (2016). In this art project, combining email-based interactions, photographic explorations of self-presentation in a semi-fictionalized environment, I role-played an alien contacting and connecting humans with one another in a world in which stories had been "stolen" from us. This piece later led me down a research path of studying self-presentation in online spaces; I discuss the alien capture project in more detail in the preface of my dissertation.
The email introduction to the photo-sharing and storytelling tasks.
The email introduction to the photo-sharing and storytelling tasks.
Participant photos, posing as alien captives, submitted for the project. Faces blurred to protect privacy.
Participant photos, posing as alien captives, submitted for the project. Faces blurred to protect privacy.
Research projects that investigated the artistic process. 
How we create and embody the other: Implications for diversity in character-centric games and media. As part of this work, I interviewed artists, actors, writers, and others to understand how they approached creating and embodying characters they saw as "other" than themselves in some way. Published at conference for Meaningful Play in 2018, winning a top 3 paper award.
Learning to Listen: Critically Considering the Role of AI in Human Storytelling and Character Creation. As part of this paper, I share my opinions on potential directions for different forms of storytelling  platforms and technology, including virtual reality. Published at First Storytelling of the NAACL conference, 2018.