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The Virtual Magic Shop

The Virtual Magic Shop draws inspiration from the group psychotherapy technique known as 'The Magic Shop,' wherein a shopkeeper (typically the therapist) interacts with customers (patients) who seek to acquire or exchange human characteristics or psychological qualities like Empathy, Ignorance, and Patience. In light of the ongoing challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on people's lifestyles, The Virtual Magic Shop aims to provide a nurturing environment for personal growth within a playful virtual setting. Through this platform, individuals can engage in beneficial transactions to enhance their mental well-being and address the changes brought about by the pandemic. Utilizing 3D space and Augmented Reality, customers can explore the virtual portal and participate in transactions that are visualized as self-care products tailored to their needs. The Packaging Design for the project won first place in HP Indigo's Digital Print Creative Challenge 2020.


Branding / AR / Packaging Design /
Three Dimensional Design

Concept

The Magic Shop is a psycho-drama technique aimed at self-evaluation, personal growth and self-actualization (Verhofstadt-Deneve, 2000). The Magic factor is that any customer can buy any intangible human characteristic they wish to have by giving something they currently possess. The discussion to understand what they truly desire and bargain fairly is at the heart of this technique. The Magic Shop Technique has many variations. The main framework is somewhat similar.

The qualities available to buy or give up are recyclable. Meaning, a quality that someone gave up can be a quality that another customer can buy. The technique helps to understand that “good” and “bad” qualities have their advantages according to their amount. Too much of a “good quality” can sometimes be bad, and having a little bit of a “bad quality” can be good. Bringing this concept into our current scenario and the universally accessible virtual world, The Virtual Magic Shop conducts each group session online using a specific procedure.

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Business Cards

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Invitation Card

Invitation Card

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The Virtual Magic Shop Procedure

1

Invitation

An introduction letter and Walkthrough card are emailed to each willing participant. It explains the procedure and concept of the Virtual Magic Shop. The date and time for the video call session are specified here.

Walkthrough Card

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2

Entrance and Dreamscape Waiting Area

Approximately 20 minutes before the group video call, participants are provided with a link

to access the Augmented Reality setup in the comfort of their own environment. This setup consists of a virtual entrance to the shop that opens to a zen garden-inspired environment. The garden will include visually pleasing shapes and three pools of water and plants.

 

The Zen Garden is well known for helping monks meditate and clear their minds. Applying this here will help participants attain peace of mind and clarity before making a life-changing transaction. Participants are encouraged to explore this 3D setup in Augmented Reality as they focus on what they desire to buy from The Virtual Magic Shop.

 

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3D Renders created on Adobe Dimension.

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AR model of the Entrance

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Scan the QR code to access it on Adobe Aero!

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Dreamscape Waiting Area

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3

Group Video Call Session

Ideally, a group video call session will have seven participants, including the shopkeeper. Each customer will talk with the shopkeeper one after the other, observing the remaining customers. Other customers are allowed to provide their own experiences and advice if the situation of the ongoing customer talk is relatable to them. 

Each customer may take up to thirty to forty-five minutes, so it’s strongly advised to clear their schedule on the day of the session. 

The shopkeeper has a specified list of questions they ask the customer to truly understand what they desire and what they can give up. The conversation must be welcoming and organic to help the customer make choices.

4

Product Specification

After finalizing the bargain, the shopkeeper asks the customer to choose one self-care product from a given list. According to the chosen product, they can choose their desired ingredient/colour that is “infused” with the purchased quality they can “use” for a lifetime.

5

Commitment

The transaction is only complete once the shopkeeper receives a promise of commitment to use the purchased quality daily. This has proven fruitful, as it was noticed that people stick to their commitment even weeks later.

Self-care

Product Choices

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Face Cream

Pills

Shampoo Conditioner

Handmade Soap

Toner

Face-mask

Lip balm

Serum

Bubble Bath/Bomb/Salt

Essential Oil

Deodorant

Wine

Sanitiser

Jewellery

Chocolate/Gummies

Chewing Gum

Hand Cream

Massage Oil

Dumbbells

Loose Tea Leaves

Sleep Mask

Journal Set

Blanket

Diffuser

Scented Candles

Dissolvable tablets 

Heat Pillow

Eye Mask

Perfume

Book Subsciption

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Product Visualisations

A total of two sessions were conducted with family and friends, out of which four transactions are visualized as “products” they can use for a lifetime on Adobe Dimension. The customers picked the self-care products.

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1

Purchase: 40g Courage

Price: 30g Honesty

 

Self-care product: Handmade Soap

Core Ingredient: Charcoal

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2

Purchase: 10g Ignorance

Price: 30g Compassion

 

Self-care product: Essential Oil

Core Ingredient: Cranberry seed

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3

Purchase: 30g Authority

Price: 50g Sensitivity

 

Selfcare product: Scented Candle

Core Ingredient: Vanilla bean

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4

Purchase40g Efficiency

Price: 40g Helpfulness

 

Self-care product: Natural Lipbalm

Core Ingredient: Grapefruit

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Packaging Design

The Design showcased here continues to feature the unique elements and colours used across the project. Each package is personally customized for the customer and includes the following:

1) Chosen self-care product

2) Personalized letter with an instruction card

3) Brand stickers

4) Brand business cards

5) Circular box to carry the smaller items

6) Shopping bag

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Winner in HP Indigo's Digital Print Creative Challange conducted earlier this year.

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