A glimpse of VR's infinite canvas

Quillswitch.

I've become obsessed with paintings recently. Not art in general: paintings. I've been going to galleries in London and leaning in close to see the brush strokes on the canvas or the wood. I've been learning about glazes, tints, and something called scumbling, which, it transpires, is almost as good as its name. It's been...amazing.

This started off because of my recent crush on Velazquez, an artist who applies paint so thinly that you can sometimes see the weave of the canvas peering through. He gets this incredible depth of feeling - integrity, the sense of a private moment captured and explored - and he does it with the lightest of materials, applied with a long-handled brush. You get a sense of speed. He's a genius, but the thinness of his paint really takes him to another level. Everybody who loves Velazquez mentions it: so little paint, and he does so much with it.

In a book by Matthew Collings I got a glimpse of what I've truly become obsessed with. Matthew Collings is an art writer of imagination and playfulness - he reminds me a bit of our own Bertie - and he's a painter, too. In Matt's Old Masters, he writes about the appeal of paint: "...the idea that the handling of it has an expressive, rich, luxurious life of its own."

"Anything can be art," he says, "but...I'm always surprised by the endlessness of painting... The type of painting I find gripping is the type where you can say, 'Well, the paint is everything here,' regardless of what the subject matter is or what's known about what was going on in society at the time."

I can't paint, but that passage rang a silver bell in my head when I read it. And the bell rang again this morning when I saw Worlds in Worlds on a friend's Facebook page. Worlds in Worlds is a work by Goro Fujita, who's the art director at Oculus Story Studio as well as a children's book illustrator.

I'm not going to talk about Worlds in Worlds very long, because it explains itself eloquently in the video above. It's made with Quill, a VR painting tool, and it's Fujita's response to the "infinite canvas" that Quill allows him: a canvas with boundless depth, where paint can hang in space, can form a solid sphere on which painted people can drive cars and stand and hold up soap bubbles, in which there are new worlds, with their own nested intricacies. A painting you can climb inside, a painting with corners that you can peer around.

And, well, the paint is everything here. It's so tangible, so alluring: a material that has made everything and made the exploration of a digital realm an almost tactile experience. Is it paint? Is it pixels? It's both, and it's also something new. We're inside it: art is made of stuff, and here is the stuff this art is made of.

Will you support Eurogamer?

We want to make Eurogamer better, and that means better for our readers - not for algorithms. You can help! Become a supporter of Eurogamer and you can view the site completely ad-free, as well as gaining exclusive access to articles, podcasts and conversations that will bring you closer to the team, the stories, and the games we all love. Subscriptions start at £3.99 / $4.99 per month.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Read our policy.

Jump to comments (18)

About the author

Christian Donlan

Christian Donlan

Features Editor

Christian Donlan is a features editor for Eurogamer. He is the author of The Unmapped Mind, published as The Inward Empire in the US.

Related

Here's a new trailer for Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection

The remastered collection is out next week on PS5, and later this year on PC.

The Elder Scrolls 6 may still be in pre-production

The claim was made via a now-deleted LinkedIn profile.

Halo Infinite Credits will be earnable in Season 2's battle pass

"We'll have more to share on this as we get closer to Season 2."

You may also enjoy...

Steam Deck can now support games with Easy Anti-Cheat

"This means that the two largest anti-cheat services are now easily supported on Steam Deck."

The Elder Scrolls 6 may still be in pre-production

The claim was made via a now-deleted LinkedIn profile.

Switch's latest software update improves N64 emulation

There are still plenty of issues left, mind.

Arcane's Vi is coming to Fortnite later today

Plus Jinx will be back in the Item Shop, too.

Supporters only

Comments (18)

Comments for this article are now closed. Thanks for taking part!

Hide low-scoring comments
Order
Threading
Eurogamer.net

Buy things with globes on them

And other lovely Eurogamer merch in our official store!

Eurogamer Merch
Explore our store