PhD research on DMT visual hallucinations
Above: Still frame render created by Liam Key from an interpretive visualization of a hallcuination report conducted by Dr. Rick Strassman at the New Mexico Research Institute

The topic for my PhD at the Institute of Health & Biomedical Innovation at Queensland University of Technology was New scientified methods to visualise N, N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT) complex visual hallucinations. The goal of the research was to identify how there are currently no documentation methodologies surrounding complex visual hallcuinations, and as a result, there is no method for analysing accurately the contents of the hallucinations. Verbal and written form methods for communicating novel visual details are too innacurate to compare and find similarities among individuals. DMT causes unique but consistent visual hallucinations that are difficult to describe, and as such, are not well documented or understood in terms of where they are coming from, or what the contents of the hallucinations really are. Traditionally this role has been relegated to visual artists in the creative fields, but there are new methods that can level the playing field and allow non-artists to contribute to the bank of data.

Unfortunately, the study was rejected at the confirmation process, due to legitimate concerns regarding the validation of the results and data acquisition. While there may be no clean validation method for this field, it does not resolve the very real issues in the field of visual hallucinations and only highlights part of the complex problems. After the rejection at confirmation, discussions were held to shift topics onto a field that could be validated and that was encountering a similar problem set - this is why 3D face coposite software for police agencies was chosen as an alternative topic for the PhD as police and enforceable law require individuals to retrieve accurate details from memory via mental imagery - a replica process encountered for DMT complex visual hallucination reconstructions. This new topic showed promise at eventually developing a stable ground to build into the DMT topic, but this felt like an ever evaporating reality, and this topic too was abandonded.

This caused the withdrawl from the PhD and the process came to an immediate halt. All documentation of the entire process has been left in two PDF documents. However, the research never actually stopped - it simply moved underground.

Link to the research document on novel methods for visualizing DMT hallucinations is here