Light experiments #1 – Reflections

#1 Take a photo or video of a light effect

Experiment #1: Projections on acrylic mirror. 

A single (audio-reactive, but that is not important) line is hitting a mirror. I bend the mirror with my hands to fold the mirror. Concave folding made the line fold into a circle, convex folding made it warp outwards, like a panorama.

Inspiration #1

Reflections by Olafur Eliason (A description of a reflection or, a pleasant exercise on its qualities, 1995).

I took this picture when I was on London this summer, Aug. 8 2019, visiting the Tate Modern, where Olafur Eliasson currently has the exhibition ‘Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life‘. I found this piece interesting, because I thought it incredible how a single spotlight, hitting a mirror (outside of the image) – which reflects onto another mirror (the one in the image which is turned by a motor), could make such a pattern on the projection screen.

There is such an organic quality to this light. But everything comes from a regular incandescent light hitting bended mirrors.

Inspiration #2

Cinzia Campolese, ‘Broken Panorama’ 2018

This second piece is again a bended mirror (this one is bended vertically), with a projector pointing straight at it, making a singular generative repeating pattern. It was shown at Mutek Montreal 2019.

This piece by Cinzia Campolese has the crispness of a digital rendering. But it is equally interesting to me because the light is cast all over the floor (hence the panorama title I’m guessing). To me this piece is interesting for it’s changing perception of space. But the digital rendering really takes “meaning” away from me somehow. Maybe it is because I am saturated from the amount of AudioVisual installations I encounter. Or maybe it is the lack of “natural light” qualities that come from projections. In which case I will seek to get these back with my own work on projections in the future. So a question for me to explore will be how to generate visuals that feel very natural, though projections are my main medium.

#2 Use a white light source(s) (can be LED or other) and combine it with a single colored material to create a light effect.

Using a reflective surface of metal (a coffee can) I reflected the light of me LED light, which splits 5+ Leds into a whole pattern using a refraction surface made of plastic. I wrapped it up in cloth so only a small amount of light was let through.

Then proceeded to move the can back an forth, to see the different reflections from the convex surface of the can. The anisotropic surface made the (normally completely round) lights very elongated. Sometimes I was able to hit a pattern which very much resembled water.