Video Sculpture – Toilet Paper Prototype

Problem Statement

How to make people aware of the danger of mob psychology through representing the toilet paper mania during COVID-19?

I want people to remember how mob psychology can badly influence everybody globally during this pandemic. I want people to feel dissatisfied and intrigued when they interact with the project.


A virtual museum of toilet paper mania during COVID-19 through first-person view.

Sketches and Interaction:

Creating a toilet paper museum/pool where toilet paper are floating on top of the water. Each toilet paper roll will play popular YouTube videos that mention about toilet paper. People can interact with each toilet paper roll to get an understanding of the toilet paper mania. But when the approach closer to individual toilet paper roll, the footage stops and the roll dissolves into the water.


Why Hong Kong panic buying happened: herd mentality, the media, overreaction and distrust

Toilet Paper Mania

Publisher’s column: Panic at the Costco — shifting away from the mob mentality
“The possible explanations for toilet-paper hoarding are myriad. Unlike hand sanitizer and test kits, toilet paper is not a commodity subject to increased need in the current crisis.” (The New Yorker)

Some behaviors 

  1. Fighting over toilet paper 
  2. Price surging high 
  3. Stock numbers 
  4. Giving away for free – seems like wanted to get views for me – to pretentious 
  5. News
  6. Comments other than news – ted talks, songs, games, and other forms 

Potential video footage to use for the video sculpture project 

  1. The toilet paper shortage of 1973
  2. Give away for free 
    2. Giving Away FREE Toilet Paper In Front Of Grocery Stores! (COPS CAME!)
  3. Trump Supporter Confronted After Buying Store Out of Toilet Paper | NowThis
  4. Talk shows about the toilet paper 
  5. News
  6. conversations/comments


I followed the roll-a-ball tutorial again to mock up the prototype for my project. I created a pool with toilet paper rolls floating around.

I had a test video shown on the cube as my experiment. However, I couldn’t find a way to rescale the video.

I used the lowpoly water asset from the asset store in unity but I plan to build one my own since the effect here is not as pleasant. I would also want to make sure the toilet rolls are floating with the same motion as the water.


Problem with Vuforia Engine

Originally, I wanted to create an AR environment using Vuforia Engine. However, everytime I hit play with AR Camera in my scene, Unity crashes. I tried uninstalling and installing for three times, I got the same result everytime. I searched online about troubleshooting, however, I gave Unity permission to use my camera, still didn’t work. I couldn’t see myself when I hit play in the camera in Unity and the cube attached to the ImageTarget(MetroCard) disappears. I spent the whole morning trying to figure this out and then I gave up to create an interactive environment.

Moving Forward

  1. figure out how to resize the footage to fit the toilet paper size
  2. use video player, mouseposition, and collider in unity to create the interactivity
  3. figure out if i need to use downloaded videos or stream the videos from YouTube to Unity
  4. change the rectangular pool into a huge cylinder with the texture of toilet paper.
  5. create water effects with toilet paper floating on top. [resource]


  1. balance with contents – more than youtube videos – don’t gamify it too much
  2. mock design of the virtual exhibition – a 3d model of the toilet paper exhibition – with lighting and reflection
  3. think about the placement of the content and the user flow
  4. do more research about the content
  5. Sue mentioned the podcast: 99% invisible
  6. Nick mentioned about having a toilet paper rolling motion. [What if I have the tissue rolling from the handle?]

Published by Yiting Liu


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