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Updates on the OnLights!

durham-JOL

This is where I got to write all last week — breeze, sun, outside. Peaceful!

Laura and I are on the move this week!  We spent the last week with Laura’s mom and stepdad at their cool house in Durham, Ontario — there is something completely different about Canada when you get away from the city centers.  Toronto is not representative of Ontario, or even Canada really — it’s like a mix of the nationalities you would get by sticking LA, Chicago, and NYC all into a huge cauldron and stirring it up.  Rural Ontario is amazing — the people are friendly, the towns are quaint, and there’s lots of road to be driven.

Tuesday morning we begin the next leg of the trip:  Durham, Ontario to Peoria, Illinois.  In about 10 hours we’ll stop driving and get out of the car to go to sleep!

We’re officially on the way to making Laura a permanent resident in the US, but in the mean time, we know we’re going to have to spend some time apart based on the residency maximums for a Canadian in the US.  It’s ok though, we’re ready for it, and Skype is an amazing thing.  This week is Illinois and my sister’s house in Peoria, IL.  If you’re within an half-hour of Peoria over the next week, send me an email or get ahold of me through the contact form and we’ll Tweet it up!

Our final destination is Dallas, Texas.  We’re heading there to set up camp and start promoting Lumen Buddha Studios, rock the full-time JimOnLight.com, and get back to the warm Dallas sun!

Now we return you to your regularly scheduled lighting adoration!  Have a great Monday, everybody!

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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:

Good Morning Inspiration! Berlin, from Space, at Night, from Colonel Chris Hadfield at ISS

Good morning, Earth!

An awesome piece of inspiration this morning from Canadian Colonel Chris Hadfield, Commander of the International Space Station.  Col. Hadfield took a photo of Berlin at night from the ISS (he does this all over the Earth, btw, and they’re all awesome), showing an obvious color temperature divide between the higher quality HIDs of West Berlin and the crap Sodium Vapors of East Berlin.  To look at this photo gives me inspiration, and I hope it does for all of you.  West Berlin has 43,000 sodium vapor lamps that are being phased out slowly.

Also, are you on Col. Hadfield’s FacebookWHY NOT?  He is AWESOME!

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GOOD MORNING!  THAT’S NOT TOO LOUD, IS IT?!  I LOVE YOU ALL!

LEDs, Lady Gaga Smell-Well, and Projections at Nuit Blanche 2012

Did you go to Nuit Blanche 2012 in Toronto in October?  Laura and I did, and we took some photos that I’m just now able to get to after the trade show season.  I spoke with lots of people on the street at Nuit Blanche this year, and everyone seemed to have a great time — the only thing that was a bit hard to manage was the influx of people that were present downtown for this event.  There were some awesome exhibits and light installations — but anything interactive was pretty much mobbed with people and hard to really get a sense of the artists’ messages.  Regardless, it was a lot of fun!  Check out some photos below, and experience my entire trip with the photo gallery at the bottom!

There were some fun words at the top of this post that describe how f*cked up some of the Nuit Blanche-goers got, it’s worth a quick peek.  It’s totally true — lack of organization, and a real lack of general community.  Read the post.

As we walked by the Hudson’s Bay Company in Toronto we noticed this freaky storefront window scene that we had to stop and check out — and it was Lady Gaga’s perfume on display.  That’s some pretty crazy perfume marketing, huh!  I definitely liked the design enough to take photos…

Lady Gaga's Smellwell

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Apparently this perfume makes you smell like a psycho mad scientist:

Lady Gaga Does Window Displays

Oh, officially of course Lady Gaga had nothing to do with Nuit Blanche, but her display was part of MY Nuit Blanche, so that’s why it’s here!

Something that we saw but didn’t really get a chance to experience was Beam of Underground Sun by Arezoo Talebzadeh and Kaveh Ashourinia — ostensibly, they had taken some very bright LED sources and put them down under the street at several meters down.  Arezoo and Kaveh also added some powerful fans and some silk cloth under the street to give the effect of waves of light being cast up through the grate they chose in the street.  Check this one out, it is beautiful, especially with the photos of no people around it:

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This, however, is what the real Nuit Blanche Beam of Underground Sun experience was, which was different than intended I assume but had its own jua de vive, if you will:

It was still beautiful, just mobbed with people standing directly in the way of the beam and the overall everything of the piece.

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You can kind of see down into the shaft with the fan, the fabric, and the LED units:

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It was pretty cool to be standing in an intersection of Bloor Street with no one trying to honk at me or run me down!

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Probably one of the coolest things I saw this year at Nuit Blanche was the installation called Planes by Tricia Brown Dance Company — and it was awesome!

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…and behind the walls you can see a little behind-the-scenes action!  I almost didn’t want to see this — the movement of the dancers and the projections themselves were so riveting that seeing the how-to took away from it for me.  Ah, the life of making mystery for the audience!

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Check out the Gallery View below of the Nuit Blanche event in Toronto — and check out the official Scotiabank page on Nuit Blanche so you can see the intended (and actual) views of the art from this year’s show!

Happy Thursday!

Happy Thursday, everybody!

Sorry for not posting yesterday, I have gotten a wicked case of Strep throat.  I’m glad I was able to finally find a Canadian clinic that would treat me after going to three (regardless of the fact that I have Canadian health insurance, how messed up is that?), and since I’m heading to Germany on Saturday for the ProLight+Sound 2012 Show in Frankfurt, there was no better time than the present.  One lady told me – and I’m not making this up – that the clinic could not treat me because “Americans love to sue, so we are unable to treat you.  It’s our policy.”

I’m sorry, but what the f*ck does that mean?!  Can you *really* refuse someone treatment in Canada for that kind of bullsh*t?  Where are all of the awesome Canadian strangers who aren’t douchebags, eh?  I need an honest Canadian hug!!!  Someone help me out, here!

ANY-WHO:  this is something LASER AND AWESOME for your Thursday morning!  Enjoy!

Jim Hutchison Promoted to Product Manager at CAST Software

W00T! <hands raised in the air quite in the same fashion as if I didn’t care>

So this is some pretty awesome news I want to share!  I am not really a press release guy, but this is MY press release!  Sorry I’ve had to be so secretive about this news, there was some Immigration stuff that had to happen first before it could all be released!  I’ve taking over the Product Manager gig at CAST Software in Toronto, Canada for wysiwyg and Vivien Virtual Event Designer!  I’m moving up here to Canada for a while, but still doing the tradeshow route and traveling the globe talking about light and the world of lighting!  Here’s the release, sent earlier today:

TORONTO – CAST Software of Toronto announces the promotion of Jim Hutchison, creator and editor of the internationally renowned JimOnLight.com, stepping up to assume the role of Product Manager for CAST Software’s wysiwyg as well as for Vivien Virtual Event Designer, the CAST software suite for the special events industry.  

Hutchison has been contributing marketing and technical copy for CAST Software as their Social Media Manager since early 2009, in addition to writing various articles for the company’s newsletter, The Plan. Given his technical experience with the company’s products, CAST has chosen Hutchison to lead the way forward for wysiwyg and Vivien Virtual Event Designer.

“I’m beyond thrilled to be leading the amazing development team at CAST,” Hutchison said. “I’ve been a wysiwyg User since Release 4, and I don’t think that there is a design I haven’t created in wysiwyg since the early part of this century. I love the products, I love the teams, and I love talking to our Users about how wysiwyg works for them. I’m excited to bring my industry enthusiasm and knowledge to the Product Manager role.”

Before joining CAST Software, Hutchison was a full time writer, lighting designer, and professor, teaching lighting design and production lighting technology. He started JimOnLight.com in 2008, writing about all genres and applications of lighting. He is a practicing lighting designer, a member of United Scenic Artists Local 829 and a contributing member of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America.

Gil Densham, CEO of CAST, says, “We are excited to have Jim’s enthusiasm and industry expertise in the Product Manager’s role. Knowing the vigor Jim invests, it will no longer be quiet around CAST as we look forward to the future, with a grander vision for wysiwyg and Vivien Virtual Event Designer.”

Email Hutchison at [email protected] or phone him at +1.416.597.2278 x271.

Somebody asked me at PLASA Focus if I was still going to be writing JimOnLight.com.  I had to respond with “OMFG OF COURSE I AM.  I’m JimOnLight!

Let’s Play CHECK IN with JimOnLight.com in Canada!

I’m in Toronto right now.  Next week I’ll be in Phoenix for a week long show run.  The week after that?  I have no idea.  Let me check my calendar.

So, for those of you who were at the Broadway Lighting Master Classes this year, sorry I missed you!  I wasn’t able to attend this year because of a gig I have in Toronto right now, but I hear I missed some fun partying in the Big Apple!

Let’s see:

I’m lighting up the inside of an excellent space in downtown Toronto this week for the Centre for Social Innovation, who just bought a building!  I’m partnered in a company with everybody’s favorite lumen hunter, Amanda Lynne Ballard, called LX Injected – we’ve started up this venture to bring light art on a large scale to the world.  One of our upcoming projects is the Centre’s new building – LX Injected is lighting up the inside of one of the floors for a gathering this evening, and we’re happy with the product we made last night!  I’ll post lots of pictures after the event is over this weekend.  We’re extremely excited to help out the Centre for Social Innovation and bring some lovely lux to their new digs!

Most of all, I just wanted to check in with the world.  I hope everyone is having an excellent week, a wonderful summer and end to the school year, and enjoyable production and design experiences!  Get out there and light up the darkness!

Something Illuminated to Start Your Day – Good Morning!

One of everybody’s favorite ladies of light and art (Amanda Lynne Ballard) sent me this great video – it’s actually a Tropicana OJ commercial, but it is absolutely excellent nonetheless.  Tropicana took some OJ and some illumination to Inuvik in Canada during the dark months period of no sunlight.  You know, like Ice Road Truckers Inuvik, the one in the Northwest Territories?

Check it out, and happy Tuesday!

Peace Bridge and All of Its Glorious LEDs

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Philips Lighting and a federal agency called the Transportation Enhancement Program have teamed up to light the Peace Bridge with LEDs – it’s the bridge that connects Buffalo and Fort Erie, Ontario. The TEP is a part of the Federal Highway Authority.

Check out this video – it’s a bit fast for really getting a feel for the lighting orchestration of the bridge, but something is better than nothing, right?  The Philips press release is below the video:

Buffalo, NY, USA and Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada – Proving that city landmarks and structures needn’t go dark to be energy conscious, the Peace Bridge has undergone a 21st century transformation made possible by advanced light emitting diode (LED) technology.

The $1.2 million project was funded by the federal government’s Transportation Enhancement Program, with support from the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority.

Formerly lit by metal halide floodlights that had fallen into disrepair, the 3,580-foot bridge is now illuminated by nearly 700 tri-color LED lighting fixtures – each capable of digital control to produce millions of colors and dynamic sequences. Unlike conventional light sources, they don’t require maintenance-intensive gels, filters or color scrollers to customize the bridge’s appearance on the fly for special events and holidays. More importantly, the entire LED installation will consume just one third the energy of the previous system – reinvigorating the signature bridge in a smart and sustainable way.

“At the turn of the last century Buffalo was known as the ‘City of Light,’ recognizing its status as one of the first cities to be illuminated by hydro-electric power. The Peace Bridge Authority is pleased that over 100 years later we can deliver a project that builds on this heritage, utilizing state of the art technology and energy efficiency,” said Ken Schoetz, Vice Chairman of the Peace Bridge Authority.

“The interplay of light with a signature landmark serves much more than decorative purpose. It should reinforce the form, content and volume of the object as well as reveal the essential character and nature of the architecture,” said Paul Boken, Senior Lighting Designer at Mulvey & Banani International. “For the Peace Bridge, LED technology allowed us to transform a static monument into a vibrant, ever-changing form – all while meeting budget requirements and the need for sustainability, security and versatility.”

“We’re thrilled to bring the extraordinary impact of LED lighting to this important landmark, demonstrating that energy-saving lighting upgrades can be both practical and visually spectacular at the same time,” said Jeff Cassis, CEO of Philips Color Kinetics. “This installation perfectly exemplifies the large-scale exterior applications that LED technology now allows – enabling the use of vibrant color where it was previously impractical, while simultaneously alleviating energy and maintenance concerns.”

In addition to their aesthetic versatility, LED systems are highly durable and therefore well suited for difficult-to-access and vibration-prone environments, such as bridges. For the Peace Bridge installation, a combination of ColorBlast® Powercore and ColorReach Powercore was specified – the former illuminating the deck of the bridge and structure below, and the latter applied to illuminate the bridge’s arches.

Additional information is available at http://www.peacebridge.com.

Sweet.

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La Vitrine by Moment Factory and Photonic Dreams

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I just read about a permanent installation project in Montreal called La Vitrine, which is an interactive LED wall that reacts to people as they walk by and glance at the project.  From Fubiz:

Moment Factory (momentfactory.com) developed the interactive system and designed the interactive content.  PHOTONIC Dreams (photonicdreams.com) created the original LED video wall of La Vitrine, in Montreal.

The installation includes tracking devices and low-resolution LED displays and is capable of showing many different visualizations based on the presence and movement of people.

Visitors can interact with the installation every night from 7 PM to 11 PM.
La Vitrine, 145, rue Sainte-Catherine Ouest, Montréal

Also, from the Moment Factory website:

Moment Factory’s recent premiere of North America’s first permanent interactive giant exterior wall won the Grand Prize in Montreal’s 2008 “Creativity Awards” in the Urban Integration category and found itself on the front cover of the awards’ journal. Initially a temporary pilot project, the wild public popularity of La Vitrine led it to be rendered permanent. The judges summarised the project as being “quintessentially Montreal,” expressing the playfully collective identity of the city.

La Vitrine – Montreal from steven bulhoes on Vimeo.

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