File another project under “project imagery everywhere.” In the latest illusory technique for merging digital visuals with the physical environment, this uses motors to make the visually-activated object to seem fully virtual. It’s also another example of goodness with vvvv and the ubiquitous “interfacing with the real world” platform, Arduino.

(Side note: it was a real pleasure to get to meet Arduino co-creator David Cuartielles this week at the Open Design Symposium. More on the results of that event soon, but I’ll say this: how many physical computing innovators do you know who will dress up in a dinosaur costume and walk around the streets? That’s David. And it’s beautiful to see, in surprising projects like this, what the platform he helped make can do.)

Details – a work in progress, but already showing some potential:

In this first test we combine a stepper motor controlled turntable with a realtime projection mapping. The motor, turntable and projection are controlled by VVVV (Using “pade” by …. and Arduino. As stated in the end of the movie it is possible to project on more complex objects. It takes about two hours to calibrate the system inclusive the mapping. The system is able to control bigger industrial stepper motors as well.

  • Hello

    Projection mapping is a very clever technique. It’s also becoming a tedious cliche. We get it. You can get images to seem to lie on oddly shaped surfaces. Wow. Wow twenty more times with slowly decreasing enthusiasm. Like any technique it has moved out of the learning curve and proof of concept and now needs to earn respect not for the ability but the subtlety of the art.

    There’s been some lovely work (even Peter Greenaway has some fine examples) so let’s lift the game from ‘Amon Tobin can project onto boxes!’ to ‘so what does Amon Tobin project?’ Let’s get past the paint brushes.

    • Right, but —

      Here’s my core belief. I think that in order to focus on content, you have to master the technique. You have to be bored with it. As a piano player, you get *bored with scales*. You don’t practice them to be musically interesting. (Well, then you do play with ways of getting less bored with them, keeping them interesting, but they’re still practice etudes.)

      I think the technology has to do the same thing. So, actually, if I can bore people a bit with this technique but familiarize them with what’s possible – if the people working on these techniques are doing elaborate etudes to learn how to work technically and not artistically – then you accomplish something.

      So, I admire these kinds of exercises. They’re clearly not the content. But if you get good at them, it means when you do get around to making something you would want to present publicly, you can focus more easily on what you have to say. And familiarity with the technique means just seeing people projecting on boxes won’t cut it – as you say.

  • Viesueel Geweld

    Looks very similar to this project which was done summer 2011:

    With this project the audience could rotate te object and the projection follows the movement.
    Same techniques, except they didn’t use vvvv.