When SHOWstudio was founded in 2000, director and founder Nick Knight assembled a carefully-selected team of creatives to help craft fashion's digital future (one fashion film, 3D scan and interactive at a time). Using a hugely innovative array of cutting-edge technology, Knight and his ever-evolving team of creatives have helped pave the way for many fashion firsts, one of which included live streaming a fashion show - McQueen's Plato's Atlantis.
One of those masterminds was the fresh-faced 20-something-year-old Daniel Brown, a rising coder and technology strategist at the time. Although the digital designer was still young, Brown was setting in motion an extraordinary career, which would include being featured in The Observer's '80 people who will define the next 10 years' list, to starring in the Creative Review's 'Stars of the New Millennium'. From receiving prizes, accolades and notable mentions in abundance, to appearing in The Barbican's touring Digital Revolutions exhibition and featuring in Apple's Thirty Years of Mac documentary/commercials, Brown is more than just a digital designer; he's a revolutionary.
'What's important to remember is that not only was Daniel - and still is - a fantastic digital strategist, but he also had a huge interest in fashion which is quite rare for coders. When we poached him, he was really working on a new visualization of the world, and these were things that nobody had seen before, which helped us work towards projects that had never been done before', said Knight. When asked what projects Brown contributed to specifically, Knight laid bare the intricate detail that Brown committed himself to then and continues to do so now. 'So, for instance, we did a project called Virtual Accessories, where he took the colours and patterns of the season - taking all sorts of visual codes from fashion houses - and made his abstract interactions which as a user passed their mouse over it, the pattern would change to be in the style of that house', a very abstract way of looking which resulted in the changing face of how people interacted with fashion online. A project similar is part of our 2005 series, Dress Me Up, Dress Me Down, offering SHOWstudio's audience the chance to dress and undress British model Liberty Ross in a unique combination of garments from the A/W 05 'Ecclesiastical' look. 'He was very keen on this language of digital animation and interactivity, which I was very keen on too', Knight concluded.
Fast forward to 2022, and Brown's head is back in the SHOWstudio game; after a long period of focusing on his own work in the fields of generative and interactive design and art, Brown has decided to return to the place where it all started, SHOWstudio. Speaking of his longtime colleague and friend's return to the company, Knight added ('it was) his love of fashion that brought him back to SHOWstudio and coupled with my love of refinement, it seemed like the perfect pairing.'
Not only did Brown's love of fashion bring him back, but also the new ventures SHOWstudio will be embarking on. As we're hurtling towards the metaverse at breakneck speed, it's more important than ever that SHOWstudio is surrounded by the best designers to communicate this new vision sprouting from Web3 and NFTs. Founded as a platform on the precipice of technological innovation, we are now redefining ourselves as a platform fit for the metaverse. 'The reason we started SHOWstudio was the fact that all of a sudden, you were in touch with your audience. We wanted the design (of the website) to allow our audience to interact and change it - those were the sorts of projects we enjoyed working on together, and this sort of engagement with the audience is what Danny was and still is really strong at.'
So, what does tech whizz Brown himself think of it all? He's more excited than ever before.
'I’m incredibly excited to be rejoining SHOWstudio, especially at this moment in time. Digital media is undergoing massive change thanks to technologies such as 5G, Gaming, Web3, and VR/AR, all converging to offer truly revolutionary experiences for the public. I believe the benefits fashion will inevitably reap will be particularly far-reaching.
Nick and I have long shared a vision of using digital interaction to allow people to participate in the creative process, and I’m looking forward to helping the team at SHOWstudio utilise these new tools and explore their potential.'
Stay tuned to see Brown and Knight's partnership unfold in Web3.