Prof. Biju started the class by introducing the relationship a camera and a projector had. Kind of like how while a camera ‘took in’ light, a projector ‘gives out’ light. He also had a screen with several sensors on it, and proceeded to show an example of dynamic projection mapping. A circle was projected onto that screen, and when moved, the circle actually maintained its size and proportion. We all thought that that was really interesting because we would normally imagine that when shifting the screen, the image either gets blown up or scaled down. How it worked was that there were cameras all around the room tracking the 7 sensors on the screen (3 on the left side, 4 on the other) and updating its x-, y- and z- location in a software each time its moved. The movement is then ‘cancelled out’ in the software and hence the projected image does not move.
Prof. Biju then explained how a Xbox Kinect works in kind of the same way. As I don’t remember word for word what he said but remember the whole gist of it, I had to do a bit of research to see how exactly it works. This excerpt from an article describes it best. The Kinect “maps, in real-time, three-dimensional space from its point of view, creates textures to wrap around these real-time geometries and can recognise body parts and even facial movements.” (taken from https://www.videomaker.com/article/c14/19018-add-motion-capture-to-your-3d-animation-workflow-using-an-xbox-one-kinect)
This workshop piqued my interest in dynamic projection mapping! And while the Kinect has certain limitations like how it is not a motion capture studio with multiple cameras all around (like the one we were in), and how it is only from a one-point view, it would be interesting to try incorporating this motion aspect with a Kinect into my future works.
Also, this workshop reminded me of Lit Tree Installation by Kimchi and Chips that we heard Elliot Woods talk about during his presentation at the Urban Media Art Academy. The Kinect was used in projecting mapping onto the moving leaves of the tree.