Interactive art with wooden mirrors – The wooden mirror (1/4)

OK, so this is a wooden mirror. It’s a large display, it’s made
out of 835 of these wooden tiles. Optically,
the way you get the image is, when the tiles tilt downwards,
they get to be dark, and when they tilt upwards,
they hit the light, like this one here, and they get to be bright. These are all motorised,
so they can move up and down, controlled by the computer. And on top of the piece,
on the ceiling, are spotlights,
aimed down at a steep angle. That’s how we get a good contrast
on the display. There are several motors that are
moving the wooden pixels, and can position them
from very down, probably 30 degrees
pointing down, to about 30 degrees
pointing upwards. In the centre of the piece, more or less at eyesight
of a typical average person, there’s a tiny camera. It’s hiding here
between four of the wooden chips. That video camera
is capturing the image of whoever or whatever
stands in front. That video signal
is then sent to a computer, and that image is evaluated in
greyscale, in black and white values, and each black and white value actually
corresponds to an angle of one of these wooden pixels. A video signal usually contains 500,000
pixels – a lot of pixels, and my system
only uses 835 of those. That is done by the digitiser
on the computer. The system is quite fast, so it refreshes itself
probably 15 or 20 times a second, so it feels
sort of a smooth animation.


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