24×360: Experimental Light Painting

Hi ho, your resident wearable-light ink slinger here! A while back, Aron Altmark sent me this amazing video, and on my quest to step closer to the nigh-impossible Inbox Zero, I rediscovered some absolutely amazing light art.

Timecode Labs created 24×360 using twenty-four cameras to capture 360 images of fifteen different moments in light. Combined, the images create 360 degree views of some amazing light painting. The twenty-four camera are laid our in a ring surrounding the model, and were triggered to create the “bullet time” effect. Also known as a “time slice” or “frozen time,” bullet time in its original form took a series of still cameras, all triggered at the same time or with a brief delay depending on the desired effect, to orbit a specific, normally too-fast-to-experience moment in time. Combined with something as fleeting, and typically displayed in two dimensions as light painting, this is a visual triumph.

The team consisted of Patrick Rochon, an extremely talented light painting photographer and first prize winner of the Nikon Photo Contest in Japan, Eric Paré,  and Timecode Labs of Montreal. A different style of bullet time light painting has also been done with a 96 camera rig here, by Richard Kendall.

I can only imagine what a combination of 24×360’s bullet time and this amazing piece of software could create to give a view beyond time in to how these amazing light artists create their work!

At only 55 seconds, you have just GOT to watch this video. No. Really. Watch this:

A few stills of the light paintings:

LED Freerunning: Light Emitting Dudes

Meet the Light Emitting Dudes! Three freerunners from Bangkok, Sydney, and Frankfurt take on the streets of Bangkok in RGB suits and it is just awesome to behold. Despite the effortless grace of their movements, and the beautiful surreal images exposures of their suits moving through spacetime create, it is no easy feat. The international team shot for two weeks while constantly maintaining these first-gen LED freerunning acrobatic suits, and trying to avoid attention in guerrilla filming situations (apparently the suits attracted a lot of attention, who would have thought?).

But despite all of the challenges, Director Frank Sauer says,

The cool factor of looking like a general bad ass never wore off. I think a lot big kids dream of dressing up like superheroes and leaping around the city. That’s something I can cross off my bucket list, now. We had a great time together. In the end, it’s definitely worth it to create something new and unique in a way only you can.

Check out the fantastic video:

Light Emitting Dudes – LED Freerunning from Frank Sauer on Vimeo.

Awesome Art History Appreciation: Magritte

The Empire of Light is a series of paintings by René Magritte. Painted between 1950 and 1954, The Empire of Light contains three paintings housed at famous museums around the world, in New York one at each MoMA and The Guggenheim, and in Brussels (where I encountered this piece) at the Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique in their fantastic Magritte gallery.

This piece is absolutely more spectacular in real life, though the images available online of his different renditions are still fascinating. The juxtaposition between the daylight skies and the manmade light on earth is fascinating. It is a simple yet superbly strong surrealist gesture.

Art is such a fantastic inspiration for us as lovers of light. That which is not lit cannot be seen, let alone painted, so these renditions of the world are our kin, and studying them can only benefit our work. This is a very theatrical piece, which shows how a tiny schism can create a spectacularly unsettling scene. What do you think of Magritte’s Empire of Light?

Lego Lighting Design: Foster the People

Sometimes people laugh and tease, “Daphne what have you NOT thought about lighting?” Well, I admit, I there is something… It never occurred to me I could be a concert lighting designer for Legos before. And having seen this video, I have no idea why not!  Dylan Woodley, the 17-year-old creator of this video made a spectacular concert lighting design for this stop motion lego phenomenon:

I especially love all of the references to the original music video’s lighting design. Dylan used lighting fixtures as visible set pieces like in the original video, starting from the first moment when drum hits and back light bumps align. He also references more subtle uses of lighting in the film below, particularly color. In the band’s music video, when the performance faces an audience for the first time, blues and purples are added to the lighting palette. Dylan also added a similar color scheme to the band’s lighting around 1 minute 30 seconds.  Check out the original music video below:

Fun Trivia: Hide and Seek Hopper in ETC’s HQ

Electronic Theatre Controls’ headquarters in Middleton, Wisconsin is generally accepted as unbelievably awesome. ETC won In Business Magazine’s “Commercial Designs of the Decade” award for best development in a large building. Amongst the tangle of storefronts, theaters, and towers; its own “town square” buzzing with inspiration and creation, is a replica of a very famous diner–American realist painter Edward Hopper’s “Nighthawks.” Some cool trivia many do not realize is–quite a few more of Edward Hopper’s paintings influenced ETC’s Town Square. The storefronts were influenced by “Early Sunday Morning” and the bank entrance at the headquarters which houses the finances department with “New York Pavements” and “Summertime.” Characters from Hopper paintings are also visible, including:

• From “Four Lane Road” an older man in a chair, located across from ETC’s deli

• Also from “Four Lane Road” the woman is seen leaning out a window above the Habberdashery (the clothing and swag shop) • “Girl at a Sewing Machine” is also across from the deli, but closer to Manufacturing

• The man from “Pennsylvania Coal Town” is seen by the Century Theatre’s ever-changing marquee

• From “New York Office,” a woman seen above the bank

• From “Room In Brooklyn” the girl sitting with her back to the window

Edward Hopper was a fabulous painter and printmaker. His works portray all the light our eyes harvest from the world magnificently, and it is really fantastic that Electronic Theatre Controls’ headquarters holds such clever tributes to Mr. Hopper. Without light, there is nothing for a painter to portray.

 

 

 

Nighthawks reception photo by John Jacobsen.

Incandescent Cloud

This has been making the rounds, but with good reason!  Caitlind r.c. Brown created a cloud out of 1,000 functioning and 5,000 donated burned out light bulbs for Calgary’s Nuit Blanche. For those of you who don’t know, Nuit Blanche (All Nighter, or literally “White Night”) is an all-night public arts festival. I personally have always really been drawn to the concept of Nuit Blanches, and would love to work on one. The closest thing I personally have been to is Santa Monica’s Glow, which was wonderful and an idea I really hope to see expanded on.

In Incandescent Cloud, pull strings glimmering like rain hang from the cloud. Nuit Blanche attendees could manipulate the cloud’s luminosity using those strings, creating random small flickers singularly, or working in teams to pull the strings at the same time. It is a wondrous installation, and I’m sure must have been a blast at Nuit Blanche!

Check out some photos and video below:

Light Rhapsody: Body Light Art

Two french directors, Marc Czerwiec and Vivien Testard have used light to paint a beautiful short film in “Light Rhapsody.” Projection designed around a model’s body wraps it–and it is gorgeous! I’ve included a couple stills from the video below.

I highly encourage checking out the video, but I have taken the tame path and not embedded it here given their use of a nude model could be construed as Not Safe For Work. (Though I haven’t seen a Severe Period Greek sculpture blog saying Myron’s Discobolus is NSFW!)

Take your own responsibility, and click-through to view the beautiful short here!

 

Thanks to Fox for the heads up! *jump in air high-five*

Misnomer Majestica: Fire Rainbows

So-called Fire Rainbows actually have nothing to do with fire or rainbows, however they are absolutely awesome! The correct nomenclature for this optical phenomenon is circumhorizontal arc (circumhorizon arc and lower symmetric 46° plate arc are also accepted). A multi-colored halo (spanning from the red wavelengths at the top to the indigo like a rainbow) that runs parallel to the horizon occurs when the sun’s height in the sky is more than 58° above the horizon and its light passes through a cirrus cloud or haze consisting of ice crystals. These ice crystals must be hexagonal and plate-shaped, facing parallel to the ground. When light enters the top of the ice crystal through its vertical side face, and exits bending through the lower horizontal face, it separates like a prism.

While the circumhorizontal arcs are indeed arcs, they frequently only appear in small sections of wispy cirrus clouds where the ice crystals are properly aligned, which leads to the misnomer “fire rainbow”. Here’s a small gallery of this spectacular optical phenomenon:

Quadrotor Light Show

What happens when you take a four rotor helicopter and some photons?

 

With the help of mirrors… ONE TOTALLY RADICOOL LIGHT SHOW:

So what did you just see? The production by University of Pennsylvania’s GRASP (General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception Lab) uses 16 quadrotors both as lighting devices, but also the mirrors they’re equipped with to manipulate light.

If anyone has more information about how the quadrotors, mirrors, and fixtures are controlled and their interactions programmed, I would love to know! Please post a comment, or you can always reach me via my bio in the footer, the contact form, or daphne (at) jimonlight (dot) com!

Congratulations to the team: Jonathan Santana & Xander Smith (event concept), Juliette Larthe (producer), Marshmallow Laser Feast (Memo Akten, Robin McNicholas, Barney Steel, Raffael Ziegler, Rob Pybus, Devin Matthews, James Medcraft), KMel Robotics (quadrotor design and development), Oneohtrix Point Never (sound design), Sam & Arthur (set design) Holly Restieaux (production supervisor), and Farrow Design (typography and design).

Thanks to Peter Kirkup for directing me to the topic on Blue Room!

Dancing With Light

I’m going to just let this video speak for itself… Anything I say isn’t going to begin to express the INSERT-EXCITED-AND-OVERWHELMINGLY-POSITIVE-ADJECTIVE-HERE-ness of this video.

Thank you so much to Nicola Andrews for sharing this on her Tumblr, and to TED for sharing the fact that design and light can be just as inspiring as the variety of their other talks.