I.L.L.U.M.E: Interactive Laser Light Using Multiple Editors
I.L.L.U.M.E will consist of an interactive laser projector, three control stations, and a circular screen. Participants will use the stations to change the patterns and color of the lasers displayed on the screen. Participants will approach a control center and see three identical control stations. Each station will control one of the three corresponding lasers (red, green, blue) and their set of mechanics. The controls will be intuitive, simple buttons, switches, knobs, and sliders. The controls will change the laser brightness, the rate the laser flashes, switch between optical filters, and change the speed and direction of motors that spin optical components. Below is a sample video of an example pattern possible with a single green laser and single control station. The mechanics will be housed in a transparent casing so participants can see how the contraption works. The resulting circular patterns will produce a radial-symmetrical geometric array of thousands of moving red, green, and blue points. The laser points will be diffused so as their paths intersect colors mix creating millions of color combinations. It will be viewable from both sides of the circular screen. The versatile screen will act as a canvas so the installation can be set up in any environment (even outdoors) and at different heights and angles to project above eye level when needed. Designed with safety in mind the lasers will only hit the screen even if the chance of malfunction.
I.L.L.U.M.E. is an acronym for “Interactive Laser Lighting Using Multiple Editors”. Interactivity is an essential element to the installation. The main control center is designed to have multiple participants use the three control stations simultaneously to edit the laser patterns displayed on the screen. While a single participant can move from station to station to edit the patterns, multiple participants editing patterns at each stations allows for collaboration and teamwork to create patterns. The inner workings of I.L.L.U.M.E. will be in a transparent casing, allowing participants to see how their input at the control stations manipulates the device itself. Being able to see the path of the lasers, mechanics of the device, and patterns they create on the screen will promote critical thinking in engineering, physics, optics, photonics, and color theory. I.L.L.U.M.E. lets people play, explore, and learn. It gives participants a way to create in a way never before possible.