Monday, May 20, 2024

Creating a different world with an immersive experience designer Daria Maksimova – Film Daily

Daria Maksimova near the exterior of the Vintage Cinema, World of Barbie, Toronto 2022

In a world where immersive experiences are becoming more and more popular, Daria Maksimova has managed to amass a truly impressive portfolio of performances. With a career spanning nearly a decade, Daria has worked on a variety of large-scale, multi-million dollar projects, each captivating the minds of hundreds of thousands of people across North America. Her vision has transformed prestigious venues into magical, interactive wonderlands. This article will delve into Maksimova’s creative craft, highlighting her most notable projects, commercial successes and insights into what it takes to create immersive experiences that leave a lasting impression.

From designing World of Barbie, an immersive and interactive tourism experience based on a beloved doll, to Dr. Seuss, an immersive brand experience based on the work of one of the best-selling children’s authors of all time, Maksimova’s work has left a lasting impression on audiences.

We recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Maksimova to discuss her forward-thinking approach to design and the refreshing philosophy that has made her such a powerful creative force in the industry.

“Each project is important to me and I treat it with the same care. It’s important to create something that will entertain different audiences. The children’s reaction to these interactive environments is really exciting and the adults really engage and want to immerse themselves in another world.” says Daria. “Being a lead designer of immersive experiences is a bit like being a film director, as I have to combine so many components into a single vision.”

When asked about her most notable recent project, Maksimova mentions World of Barbie, produced by Kilburn Live in collaboration with Mattel. It’s an immersive and interactive touring experience based on one of the best-selling iconic toys of all time, and Maksimova is beyond excited to open the show in Santa Monica, California, right before the premiere of Warner Bros. Barbie film in the summer of 2023. For Maksimova, this project is a dream come true, as it marks the first time that one of the shows she designed will open in Santa Monica, a place she has always admired.

Especially for the 2023 premiere in Santa Monica, Daria had designed a Vintage Cinema interior, a new addition that no one had seen before, with custom-made neon logo signs, arched wall decor, screen and soft chairs in Barbie color. “We’re at the heart of the home theater and entertainment industry, and as a movie fan myself I wanted to draw some parallels to that on the show.”

When asked about her creative process and design philosophy, Daria emphasizes the importance of thorough research and immersion in the subject. She believes that a deep understanding of the brand or topic can help bring about innovative ideas, allowing for fresh perspectives and unique designs that resonate with audiences. “I get a lot of inspiration from this city. A part of me always looks at this city through that lens. Barbie as a brand is also closely associated with those aesthetics. That connection is evident in the design of this show.”

Overcoming challenges is par for the course in the world of design, and Daria has learned to navigate the complexity of her projects by visualizing the end goal and breaking it down into manageable daily tasks. She also emphasizes the need to constantly practice and improve her craft, improving her creative skills with each new venture.

In parallel with World of Barbie, Maksimova continues to work on Dr. Experience. Seuss, another show she designed. Launched in Toronto in 2019, it quickly became a commercial success, making Time Out’s “50 Coolest Places in the World” list. The experience of Dr. Seuss is now open in one of Washington DC’s most prominent locations, Tysons Corner Center.

When asked about her aspirations, Maksimova said she would “like to create an immersive experience that’s based on a film, especially if I’m working with an IP that I have a personal connection to.” Daria draws parallels between films and movies as both can create a sense of being transported to another world.

Daria Maksimova’s success is a testament to the power of creativity. Her unique approach to designing these experiences and ability to bring innovative visions to life have largely contributed to her success in the industry, as her designs continue to entertain a diverse group of audiences across North America.

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