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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:

Software To Make Your Life Better

The title is a big boast, but it is the slogan of software program F.lux. F.lux is an application which adjusts the color temperature of your computer monitors based off of the time of day. Our monitors are designed with a daylight color temperature, however the majority of us rely on our computers outside of the daylight hours, and staring at daylight color temperature fixtures can negatively impact your sleep schedule. And we all don’t get enough sleep as it is!

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F.lux Disabled

F.lux allows users to pick any color temperature between 2700 and 6500K on desktop for daytime and nighttime respectively, with markers for common sources. On iPhone users pick between a list of common light sources including candlelight, halogen, and fluorescent. F.lux takes care of the rest.

F.lux is very compatible with fluctuating schedules as well, for example, if you have a nocturnal working schedule (here’s looking at you, Mouse!), you can set a daylight temperature for your nights, and an incandescent for day. Another way I find F.lux useful, is as an assistant lighting designer it is sometimes easiest to keep track of what is happening on the stage via computer. I set my monitor to a similar color temperature as the stage, so I can more accurately document the colors of different fixtures and cues.

The iPhone app hosts an interesting feature, “turn off for color sensitive work.” So far, I have not noticed it take effect, having opened applications such as camera, photos, and Photoshop Express. However it does seem like an interesting feature which they plan to port to the desktop applications. For the time being, you can easily disable for an hour at a time on your desktop, if you are doing work where exact renderings of colors are vital. There seem to be many more exciting features in store for f.lux to allow for even more precise and intuitive control.

My preferences for F.lux

F.lux specifies in the installation directions, “Tell f.lux what kind of lighting you have, and where you live. Then forget about it.” How very true. F.lux feels so natural, I often forget I have it running until someone opens their laptop at a tech table next to me, and I am blinded by the glaring, icy light.

F.lux is available on most Mac, Linux, and Windows OSes. If you have a jailbroken iPhone, you can also join the party via Cydia. Download here.

#GaffDressChallenge is Getting Down to Business

Have you been watching Twitter lately for news on the #GaffDressChallenge?  The 2010 Gaff Dress Challlenge is coming to a convention in Kansas City (March 31-April 3), and it is going to be crazy.  CRAZY, I say.  BMI Supply‘s booth on the expo floor (booth 1010) is where the action will be going down.

Here’s what we got so far – both of the competitors for the 2010 Challenge are bringing it:

Game ON.

The Gaff Tape Dress Showdown

Oh, SNAP.

Two of my favorite Twitter folks, @lekogirl and @a_mandolin, are gonna be having a showdown using Gaffer’s Tape to make a dress of some sort.  For those of you who don’t know gaff tape, it’s what we use in the lighting industry (and in pretty much all over facets of entertainment) as the duct tape for everything.

These rocking chicas are going to use it to fight it out, homemade dress style.

It is so on.  The bar is high – here’s @lekogirl’s color filter dress from LDI 2009:

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But watch out…  @a_mandolin brings this to the ring:

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I am throwing $20 USD into the winner’s pot for this competition. If you’re interested in donating to the 2010 Gaff Dress Challenge, get a hold of me through the contact form.  Any kind of donation (money or otherwise) is great.  I’m trying to make this worthwhile for these two talented ladies!

The rules are simple:

  1. The main fabric of the dress can be gaff tape.
  2. Yes, you may use non-gaff tape for fasteners, boning for corsets, zippers, whatever.  Make sure to ask first.
  3. The dress must rule the school.

Easy!  The end of this gaff tape dress-off will be at USITT 2010.  More details as they emerge.

Get ready, we’re going to get our faces rocked off.

LDI 2009 is Over, and I Had A Blast!

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I’m home from LDI 2009 in Orlando, Florida – my lovely wife Leia and my sister-in-law were with me on Saturday afternoon on the conference floor and at the LDI 2009 Tweet-Up that night.  Friday and Saturday I walked around mostly with Justin of iSquint.net and generally had a blast.

This was the year that I met more people in the span of two days than ever before in my life!  All of you wonderful people that I finally got to meet at LDI this year – you’re all awesome!

I have some excellent information from the conference that I’ll be sharing across the next several days.  Lots of stuff debuted at this year’s LDI conference, and lots of images were captured by my camera!  I think I took over a thousand pictures and video clips, so get ready to learn what went up and down at the show!

I have so many things to show you all…  now that you’re all hopefully back from Orlando and rocking the office again, right?  There were so many things that were awesome about the show this year – two of which are on this page.  One is my wife getting to walk the show floor and see what it’s all about, and another is our beloved @lekogirl’s awesome color filter swatch dress at the JimOnLight.com and iSquint.net LDI 2009 Tweet-Up on Saturday night!  Daphne, you are awesome!

Stay tuned!

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The Best Source Four Imitation EVAR

A young lighting designer that I think we all need to watch for as she progresses in her journey to become one of the great illuminateers posted one of the funniest pictures I think I’ve seen in a long time – a creative, intelligent, and shamelessly excellent representation of an ETC Source Four ellipsoidal reflector spotlight.  Daphne, this is one of the greatest costumes ever.  Thanks for letting me post these!  I just know in my heart that the ETC folks will be pleased as punch to see you were thinking of them!

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The Lighting Tea Bag


Daphne Mir (@lekogirl) from Twitter sent me information on a product that uses a phosphorescent compound in a tea bag to create an interesting, impromptu-esque light source – The Tea Bag Light!

Designer Wonsik Chae has created this source, “consisting of a cup filled with a chemical intermediate and a bag containing fluorescent molecules, the light works through a catalyst of this chemical reaction.”  Definitely a niche source, certainly boutique – but what do you think?  Post in the comments!

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Thanks Daphne!  Also, thanks to Yanko, Designboom, and Toxel!