Personal Project: Projection Mapping by James Rountree
We'd like to share a recent project crafted and completed by our Lead Production Manager Jimbo Rountree, as part of our Cultivating Creativity Series. Through curious clicks on random projects creatives share online, Jimbo came across projection mapping projects and became fascinated by them.
Projection Mapping, also known as Video Mapping, is a projection technology used to turn objects, often irregularly shaped, into a display surface for video projection. These objects may be complex industrial landscapes, such as buildings. By using specialized software, a two or three dimensional object is spatially mapped on the virtual program which mimics the real environment it is to be projected on. This way, the computer knows exactly where to project its information as it can bend and highlight any shape or form. Almost any surface can be used to 'become a dynamic video display of 2D and 3D images that can transform what is reality for the audience into illusions and images of infinite possibilities'. Using this information, the software can interact with a projector to fit any desired image onto the surface of that object. This technique is used by artists and advertisers alike to add extra dimensions, optical illusions, and notions of movement onto previously static objects. The video is commonly combined with, or triggered by, audio to create an audio-visual narrative.*
After looking at some projects Jimbo decided to give it a shot and take on a simple box project. He researched the software to use, built a simple cube, created a simple animation and tested it. "I didn't think it was going to work" he says, but before he knew it the simple cube was mapped with an animation. After this success he was so excited he decided to build a more complex sculpture for a challenge.
The sculpture was constructed of plywood and MDO and it took about a week to make. The animation has 18 different blocks and took another few weeks to create and test.
The sculpture was designed with multiple angles to showcase that the video is directed to each angle of the sculpture. It was created to explore the challenges and possibilities of a 3 dimensional object. When we asked Jimbo what his favorite thing about this project was, he said "I was just super stoked to learn how to do it and then work on a larger piece". The animated sculpture was first featured in the 2013 Gainesville Fashion Week Art show and is now a permanent installation for the Neon Liger at Spannk. Go check it out, and rage while you're there! (wink)
This post was originally published on Tuesday, September 10, 2013.