How To Series: Creating an AR Mural

Our "How To" series are meant to share the knowledge on creating immersive content and break down the magic behind Augmented Reality. Here are some guidelines for you to create an AR mural yourself!

We know it might seem complicated, but creating an AR experience is just a matter of a few steps. We promise after this you'll transform your art in unimaginable ways! 

Welcome to our "How To" Series where we are going to walk you through the creation of the Augmented Mural. 



Let's begin with the target. A large mural will be used as an image target with the SQUARS platform to create an interactive AR experience at the mural’s location.

The AR Mural on the Donaukanal, near Spittelau


The first step is to establish the vision for the combined mural and AR experience. Ideally, the physical artwork and the digital content will be linked, sharing a common theme and aesthetics, so that the overall experience is cohesive.

First sketches of the mural on-site

Consider whether elements of the mural will feature in the digital content, and plan how they will appear in both mediums. 



Mural Design

Develop the mural concept on paper and prototype with the SQUARS platform. The image target can be updated at any time with a new version of the mural design. Although the final mural may be very large, it can be prototyped on a standard piece of paper.

mural design 1-min-adjusted brightness

Test the quality of the image target tracking as the design develops. Aim for high-quality tracking for the best user experience. 

mural design 3 (tracking check)-min

Once the design is painted at the location, a final image target file can be created by taking a photograph of the completed artwork. The photograph will capture any additional details and textures, such as brickwork, pipes, and so on, to aid tracking on site.

Any unwanted parts of the mural location, such as windows, can be masked by filling them white on the tracking image.

Content Design

Placeholder content can be used for the augmentation, and updated as it develops.

Think about the use of 3D, animation, sound, and video.

Animations, sound, and video can be triggered by tap events within a scene.

You can use default assets provided by SQUARS or import files from your computer.

Multiple scenes can be used to present completely different content, much like chapters in a story. The user can transition from one scene to the next using tap events.

Consider depth, utilizing the space in front of and behind the plane of the mural.

Once you're ready to share your AR creation with the world, simply tap "Publish" and share your AR story with your audience.


Remember that the experience can be viewed from different angles. If there is an ideal viewpoint, consider marking it on the ground to guide viewers where to stand.

Consider where to place the QR code. Will it be part of the artwork? Is it large enough and clear enough to activate from a distance?

We're suggesting publishing a “coming soon” scene early so that viewers will have something to see when they activate the experience, and will know more is on the way.

Now you know how to create an AR mural experience. Start with an image on!



AR Creation Steps

Are you ready to start creating your own AR experience? You can do it in 5 simple steps:

Step 1: Sign in or create your SQUARS account

To create your AR experience from scratch, you must first sign in or create a new SQUARS account. Once logged in, you can start a new project from your Workspace. Your Workspace is a unified hub for keeping your work organized and accessible. Now you're all set and ready to go!

Step 2: Choose an image and create your first scene

In order to start working on your project, you have to choose a Target object. This can be a QR code or your image of choice

The image chosen will serve as the 'target' for the augmentation. In other words, it is the base for your 2D animation or 3D elements. These will be connected to the image and overlaid on it, in the final AR experience.

The image you choose can be a painting, an illustration, a mural, a photograph, or any other image you have in mind or you have already worked on.

You can also change your target choice later on while working on your project. 

To ensure the AR content works as intended, check out these guidelines when selecting an image target. 

Step 3: Import assets to your scenes

You can use default assets provided by SQUARS or import files from your computer. Find default assets on the Left Panel in the SQUARS STUDIO.

If you're creating your own 2D and 3D assets, feel free to choose programs you're most comfortable with.

Our platform supports the following formats:

  • Images - .jpg, .png or .bmp (max size 20MB)
  • Videos - .mp4 or .mov (max size 30 MB)
  • 3D objects + animations - .obj, .fbx, .gITF, .glb (max size 50MB)
  • Audio - .mp4.wav.ogg (max size 10MB)

Step 4: Add interactions to your assets

Turn your augmentation into a dynamic journey by adding the following interactions (or "Events"):

Step 5: Publish the project on SQUARS

During the creation process, you can always preview your AR content.

The Preview Mode allows you to see what your augmented content would look like if it were already published. You can rotate, pan, and zoom your camera to see your AR experience from all sides and angles. There are 2 types of preview: Desktop Preview & Mobile Preview (recommended browser - Google Chrome).

Once you feel like you're ready to share your AR creation with the world, simply tap "Publish" and share your AR story with your audience. No apps or long explanations are needed. Just send the link (or the automatically generated QR code) and enjoy the AR experience together!

Congratulations, now you are an immersive storyteller!

More questions?

Contact us now, and we'll be happy to help!


Start With the "How-To" Tutorial Video


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