Using AR to create virtual college experiences for graduates


Each year, graduates of the University of Louisville pose next to Rodin’s “The Thinker” as part of a 70-year tradition, to celebrate their commencement and accomplishments.


In response to COVID-19 social distancing and school closures, the University of Louisville campus closed for much of spring 2020 and into summer 2020. Graduates were forced to accept their diplomas and honor their accomplishments at home and were unable to snap their iconic graduation photo next to the statue of The Thinker.


BVK, the university’s creative agency, partnered with Tag to create a virtual experience for graduates. The concept was to build a microsite where graduates can pose next to The Thinker, virtually, and take photographs using their smartphones. Photographs are shared across social channels with the hashtag UofLGrads2020.

To create the virtual experience, Tag’s creative production team, Taylor James, developed a 3D rendering of the statue and the stand, combined the two pieces using computer generated imagery (CGI) and built in texture and lighting. The CGI model was exported using augmented reality (AR) to be easily accessed via smart phone technology.