Year created:


Who is Flora?

Inspired by an abandoned pile of postcards, Who Is Flora is an interactive narrative that follows a woman traveling across America in the 1940s. Each screen is designed around a specific card, and I paid close attention to period magazine design in order to reflect that in the screens. In the story, Flora is traveling alone, reflecting on her life. Parallel screens (hidden on the right until selected) tell my story, and the two often intersect ideas and moods.

The structure of the navigation is progressive; as each screen is visited the link for the next appears (and stays for the duration). In this way the user reads the screens in a linear order, creating narrative structure, but can visit previous screens in any order. The navigation is represented by a US Map in the upper left of the screen, with numbers representing links other destinations.

FLASH FORWARD FINALIST: Story Category, Amsterdam

ELECTRONIC LITERATURE ORGANIZATION (ELO): State of the Arts Symposium, featured work and database listing



ART GALLERY SHOWCASE: Sao Paulo, Brazil We are surrounded by pieces of the past--concrete messages from lives that have gone before us. Yet these artifacts are largely ignored in our world of planned obsolescence and digital communication. Who Is Flora combines unsuspecting messages from a past life, my interpretations of those messages, and a computer interface through which to understand them.

In the summer of 1998 I discovered a number of postcards from the year 1942. They were sent by a twenty-something woman named Flora who traveled the United States alone, sending postcards to her family. The postcards moved me because Flora and I have many things in common: our ages, upbringing, and struggles, and our travels. This piece focuses on studying the cards, the messages they shared, and my own impressions gathered from them. I was able to categorize the cards into four dominant themes: age, sense of place, time, and communication (primarily with family), and from those themes I created a storyline. The storyline here deals with the marriage of a friend and the tension between independence and love.

Who Is Flora was originally completed with two main storylines, as an interactive CD-ROM using Macromedia Director, but was later modified and re-released using Flash.