Shadow Through Time (Final Project)

Although we are influenced by the light environment we experience everyday, we rarely take a close look at the nuances in those lighting moments.

Shadow through time is a 24-hour light fixture which highlights the change in shadow compositions through time.

The square shaped fixture contains four moving elastic bands lined up horizontally and four light sources in four corners. The light sources are mapped according to the direction of sunlight throughout the day. The  elastic bands act as as a clock rotating 180 degrees in 12 hours and back.

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Inside the piece:

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Process (after prototyping):

  • Cut acrylic according to designed shapes
  • Wire the motors
  • Solder and wire the lights
  • Place strings on motors
  • Put everything together
  • Close the top with white acrylic sheet

Parts:

Schematic references:

Code and illustrator files: 

https://github.com/hellonun/shadowthroughtime
(code to be updated with RTC and sunrise/sunset API)

Lighting Moment #10

Final Project Update

This week I continued to experiment with different materials, composition of light and light sources.

Materials:

  • black and white acrylic – I decided to use matte white acrylic for the main surface because it presents shadow best and use black opaque acrylic around the side to absorb the leaked shadows
  • black elastic band (Canal Rubber) – after a few experiments with ribbons, wires, strings and various shapes and sizes of elastic bands, I chose black square elastic band for the piece because it provided the most crisp shadows

Composition of light:

  • I decided to use 4 lights in 4 corners because it provided the most interesting shadow compositions
  • I decided to only have the strings in one direction (horizontal) to highlight the differences in shadows and to keep the aesthetic neat and clean

Light source:

  • After trying the chip on board light and the high power LED light, I decided to go with the high power LED because it was more direct thus provided better shadows and lighting for the piece

Prototyping progress:

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(testing the black frame to eliminate leaking shadows)

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(testing the direction of light)

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(photos of the piece lit from different corners using an iphone flashlight)

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(photos of the piece lit from different corners using an iphone flashlight)

DMX CONTROL

Assignment: Make a controller for a DMX-based lighting plot.

For the assignment I tried using both node.js and Arduino, and found the Arduino (Arduino MRK1010 board and Arduino MKR485 shield) to be much easier in terms of programming.

To start off I connected the DMX cable to the shield.

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I then set the channel on the DMX and tested the light using the ArduinoDMX library’s example and tested a few effects to see the light’s speed – I was surprised to see that it was very fast to turn on/off, much like a strobe effect.

 

Having worked a lot with audio and visuals on Max/MSP, I wanted to try using the program to control the light. The three main effects I wanted to explore where panning, rhythm and synchronisation/desynchronisation nature of audio and visual.

I started off by trying to send multiple data from Max to Arduino through serial communication (panning experiment).

Sending data from Max: convert all integers to ascii (using atoi object)

Receiving data from Arduino: convert characters to strings (using subString) to integers (using toInt) — StringSubstring and StringToInt examples on Arduino.

After I was able to run the serial communication smoothly I started building the sound files and the controls. These were the results.

Control interface:

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Max patch:

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Max/MSP patch and Arduino code: https://github.com/hellonun/dmx-control-maxmsp-arduino

I am very happy with both the control functions and the light quality. I hope to experiment with other sounds and visual effects in the future (as well as making the control more user-friendly)

Lighting Moment #9

Lighting Moment #8

Little Sun

Light installation exploring the effects of white light through motion, time and refractive materials; clear cubes and prisms. [2019]

ABOUT THE PROJECT

Even though we constantly experience reflection refraction and diffraction, they go unnoticed unless we pay close attention to them. The moments we do usually slow us down and make us more present: watching a sunset or noticing shadow patterns in a pool.

Little Sun generates light patterns and colors using a high-voltage LED light, three acrylic cubes and a prism cube (a cube made of four prisms joined together). The white light is shined through the rotating cubes creating a slow motion light dance that draws us to pay close attention to its changing forms.

The rotation is controlled using a stepper motor and an arduino.

Code: https://github.com/hellonun/little-sun

Lighting Moment #6