The Skittish Nightscape is an interactive art piece inspired by Aparna Rao’s piece, “Pygmies.” (A link to which can be found below.) The Skittish Nightscape is a sound sensitive, behavioral piece. In a nighttime forest scene there are stars twinkling, a firefly cruising through, and creatures lurking in the trees and shrubbery, all represented by LED’s. When it is quiet, the stars fade in and twinkle, a firefly starts to move across the scene, and the eyes of creatures start to appear sporadically, blinking once lit. Some of the creatures are curious, coming out sooner than the others, and some are a bit shyer, taking longer to come out. However, if a loud sound is made that disturbs the night, all the creatures go into hiding and the process starts over should things settle down again. The behavior continues until the display is no longer powered.
Here's what one cycle of The Skittish Nightscape's behavior looks like:
Aparna Rao: High-tech art (with a sense of humor),
Start at 1:50 for Pygmies or watch the whole thing if you're awesome.
Step 1: What You'll Need
- 1 Arduino Mega
- 1 Arduino Uno
- 1 electret microphone break out board (or build you own opamp circuit if your comfortable with such things)
- We used the SparkFun BOB-09964
- 54 LED's
- 12 blue (stars)
- 42 yellow (15 eye pairs, 12 firefly positions)
- These numbers are limited by the number of digital ports on the Arduino Mega
- 1 bread board (just nice for trial circuits but also necessary in Step 5 for ground connections)
- Stock acrylic and laser cutter for forest cut outs
- Wood or other materials should be just fine. The forest shapes can be whatever you want.
- Plenty of single core wire in at least two colors and the means to solder