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April 25, 2013

The other day, I had to send some samples of my work to two dJs, to see if a collaboration could be possible. The possibility of mixing sound and interactive processing, one of my favorite interactions. I found this great object I thought I lost when my old drive crashed. It’s a quick installation artwork I made for Fontenay-Sous-Bois (east suburbs of Paris) “Les portes ouvertes” event, in may 2011. On this occasion, all artists open their studios to the public. It’s an excellent occasion to test some participative material. I did this to allow children, parents, everyone to create their own digital musical painting.  Just with a laptop, its webcam and a video projector.

Here is the how it works:

First, you print and make a scissor’s cut on your “interactive colored paper mouse”.  You can download it here, or preview and download there. This is the object you will manipulate in front of your incorporated laptop webcam.

The color you put up allows to unlock some actions on the app. blue is for the “+” in the left corner. Then choose between fractal drawings on the left or floral musical neurones on the right.

blue is on top, moved my cursor to the

Choose your element, then move wherever you want on the scene. Turn your “mouse”, putting the red color on top. Now, you start drawing or making floral musical explosions. Here, on this example, I’m starting via fractal lines.

drawing quickly some lines...

On the floral musical neurons, you won’t have ever twice the same thing. To make it interesting, and different, with few elements, I did plug a lot of random calculation on a simple fractal model. You can even have only the floral elements and nothing of sound. That’s what I call random, everything is possible ;].
Next screen, I put blue of my “mouse” on top again, moved my cursor to the “+”, and chose the musical option.

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A last word on the technique of this object. It’s based, for the “mouse” part, on Didier Brun’s RGB Wheel Tracker. The musical part is based on the work of Soul Wire’s AS3 particle node sequencer. With a little difference, Justin – in his app – plays with Tonfall, an extraordinay AS3 Audio Framework by Andr√© Michelle. I kept the graphic neuronal aspect because it fitted perfectly. But the sounds played on my installation are from my personal sound design. I managed to turn it into a “connectecting sampler”.  I will use the powerfull Tonfall possibilities another time.

If you want to try it, you can download this .zip. Unzip it in a folder, and just open index.html. The flash version will ask you to allow access to the webcam to start your experience.

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