I want to quickly show you one of my first live art events, how it was set up and how I engaged people in the content. When I do live art events, I want to incorporate participation into the events entertainment and have this effect the structure of my live art. It’s so much more interesting for me when i don’t know what images i’ll be working on at each event!
By live art I mean digital/traditional painting that is done infront of the audience instead of a pre-made recording or animation. I know the term VJing is used alot for big events with artists working live but i’m not sure I fall into this catgory yet. I probably do but for now I like the term live art as I think it suits it better.
For the RoCH: Fans and Legends launch event at QUAD a couple of months back, I created a set-up where i created a backdrop and then asked the audience to take photos of themselves in dynamic poses and email these photos to me. I would then incorporate these photos into the scene infront of them, redesigning how they looked to fit the event theme of martial arts.
It was a fun session to do and there was a lot of participation, laughter and opportunity for the audience to come and talk to me as I worked.
The set up was very low tech, I had my laptop with photoshop, my wacom tablet, a projector and a screen to project onto. And a wifi connection as well, this is an important aspect as if I can’t get the photos people are sending me, I don’t have a resouce to work with. Kinda awkward…
One of the main things to bare in mind when you’re first looking into doing this, is the projectors lumen number. The higher this is, the better quality the image is going to be once projected and it also decides how powerful the projector will be. For the small scale set-up I had I didn’t have to be too picky, the projector just had to be good enough to see the details and colours and it was only projecting a short way so power wasn’t an issue either. If you want to project outside or onto a building, then you’ll need to look into higher powered projectors.
Instructables has a few great tutorials for outside projecting and its definately something i’ll be looking to do next year.
You can see from the photos that the event was a success and it helped me to understand how people like to engage with this kind of artwork. It was fascinating for me to see others so interested in the various brushes setting and image editing tools, which for me have become somewhat boring due to using them so often. Seeing how people enjoyed watching the image develop reaffirmed to me that this way of doing live art is something I want to keep exploring.