Step 2: Design your piece

I won't get into any depth regarding designing stencils or graffiti pieces. I will also not go into detail on designing circuits for driving and sequencing LEDs. I will direct you to online and print resources where this information can be gleaned from reputable sources. I will also explain the specific design we implemented with the first two prototype electro-grafs.

Links to stencil design examples and tutorials:
Stencil Revolution
Visual Resistance
Wooster Collective
Street Crimes

Links for basic electronics for non-experts:
Tom Igoe's Physical computing online resources
Physical computing in print by O'Sullivan and Igoe.

Electro-Graf V1

The first prototype electro-graf, executed in the lab at Eyebeam is a mash-up of images of the state-of-the-art in military robots combined with quotes from soldiers, officers and military bloggers. Marine General, James Mattis, said," It's fun to shoot some people," when discussing his service in Afghanistan where US forces have killed over 3500 civilians. That's a lot of fun. More fun that even Bin Laden had on September 11th I bet. The image in this design was taken from promotional material about Foster-Miller's robot TALON. The weaponized configuration is called SWORDS. SWORDS was developed, in part, in a suburb in New Jersey at a place called Picatinny Arsenal.

"The TALON robot is the only mobile platform currently certified by the Department of Defense for remotely controlled live firing of lethal weapons." Read: the first robot licensed to kill.

For this piece we used a Stencil Revolution tutorial to create the stencil in Illustrator CS1 and cut them on a laser cutter. The control electronics were designed, built and programmed by Twin A in collaboration with a very good and up<a/> LED and video artist named <a href="http://www.villareal.net/">Leo Villareal. It is currently on loan from A for our experiments in the lab.

Electro-Graf V2

The first prototype outdoor electro-graf is currently up on the facade of Eyebeam. The design was intended to be minimal and entirely functional: to test the electro-graf capabilities in terms of size, weather-proofing, theft patterns, and public feedback.

Both electro-grafs are just technology demonstrations. I do not claim to be a writer, a bomber or an artist. I am a graffiti engineer. My intention is to develop and demonstrate tools that enable parity between the establishment and the graffiti writer w/r/t the ability to garner and direct attention.