I’ve been teaching myself bits of interactive coding recently, both through projects at Beakus and my own 360º video experiments. When a couple of friends asked me about setting up a photobooth at their wedding I decided to use my new nerd powers to make it happen!
I was inspired by Sam Cox’s similar project using Processing, but I wanted an excuse to try out OpenFrameworks instead, and teach myself how to use it. It was much harder than I thought, but I’m glad it worked in the end! Like Sam I attached a big button to the computer to make it easy to use. My version was based on The Awesome button. As a bonus, I attached a projector to the mac which was showing a slideshow of all the images captured so far.
We had lots of old hats and costumes at the wedding, which really made it fun. I would definitely set it up again if anyone else I know gets married!
I’ve uploaded the source code here if you want to try it out: https://github.com/leobridle/lb_photobooth
I got to make a bunch of little films for the National Maritime earlier this year, and they are now online.
I think the coolest one was this huge 3D version of a canaletto painting that we did for the lobby of the museum. If you go down there you can see it up on the screen for most of the summer!
Before that, I also directed some little educational films that play on ipads that visiting children can borrow. If you take a picture of certain objects with the ipad camera, then the programme recognises it and shows you a relevant animation.
The whole bunch were produced at Beakus. Big thanks to Phil Norman, Jesse Collett, Maja Tetlak and Eleni O’Keefe
Here is one of my favourite ones from that series, thanks to the hard work of Jesse Collett.
You can see the rest on the Beakus website here
A few bonus Train of Thought screenings in the past couple of weeks - firstly we were honoured to be included in Vimeo’s screening at SXSW in Texas last month. That’s a festival I’d love to go to at some point.
This saturday I gave a presentation about the inspirations and technical side of the film at Aniscape in Leicester.
and lastly, we are screening at HAFF in Utrecht this week as part of Paul Ward’s “Magic and Materiality” screening. The description of the screening seems perfect, and matches a lot of stuff that was in my mind as we were planning the film in the first place. I’ve copied it below.
Almost 3 years now since we finished that film, so I really ought to get my act together for a new one…
In viewing these films, it is the oscillation between credulity and incredulity that most interests me - the ways in which the animation is simultaneously held up as ‘magic’ and as a ‘technical process’. This means we as viewers are participants in a dialectic between enjoying the spectacle or trickery and admiring the ingenuity of the practitioner - one of the central tenets of any form of magic trick. In his book Performing Illusions (2008), film scholar Dan North talks about the development of special effects in the cinema, tracing them back to the magic theatre, and talks about a dialectic between ‘revelation and concealment’. This is what underpins the films in these programmes: the idea that it is more magical - indeed, some might argue it is only magical - when we are aware of someone behind the scenes, pulling the strings. (Paul Ward)