I figure the main audience for this particular app will likely be teens and adults. They will be expecting Alaskan folklore, and likely some unique symbolism in how Alaskans view the raven. That is what we’ll be giving them, along with examples of how the views and symbolism of ravens has changed over the years.
One of the main draws we want to give is unique Alaskan art, especially the pieces crafted by local artists – one such example being Mary Ann Fortune.
I want this project to serve the purpose of not just sharing stories with visitors, but to have an actual impact in their lives. There is not a reliable way to judge the impact a story can have on someone, especially if the story remains only in their mind to risk being later forgotten. By tying the stories to other parts of the museum (such as the giant raven sculptures on the upper level) and to local artists, the audience will have stronger connections to the stories and to Alaska. By focusing on Alaskan artwork and on local artists, there is also a stronger likelihood that the visitors will purchase local art. Most Alaskana art pieces risk being kitschy and tourist-trap crap; not to mention being mass-produced in China or other nations. But artwork that is beautiful on its own and has the added value of originating in the same area in which it is sold…that has higher intrinsic value to the viewer.
By posting pictures of local art, we are raising the likelihood of that art being purchased. If someone goes to the museum and later wanders around town and sees a focused piece on display, they are more likely to stop and point it out. Having caught the attention and other connection, the piece is more likely to be purchased – especially if the visitor liked the story the art was attached to. With artwork and crafted items, people are buying the story as much as they are buying the visual attraction.