Introduction: Day/Night - Interactive - Changable - Social - Home Entertainment Art

About: My name is Al Farmer, and I live in Sausalito, CA with my longtime husband, Andy Cramer, whom I married in 1998, and again on our 10th wedding anniversary, in a short window between the repeal of Prop 8 and th…

Basic components that make this art work unique :

Day / Night - glow paints are incorporated into the design, so a day view and a night view under UV light create a completely unique views day and night.

Changeable - rare-earth magnets are used in the work to allow the user to move certain elements that are magnetized to be moved around to different spots of the work. Since magnets are the main functional component, any metallic element can be added to the work. A collection of spoons connected to each magnet on the work can completely change the look and feel, with little to no effort on the part of the participant/owner.

Interactive - A glass shelf is suspended below the work to provide surface for the LED black lights to attach as well as hold magnifiers and black-light flashlights to activate glow paints that can be charged with exposure to this light.

Social - Adding an iPhone to the instillation, with a personal Facebook page for the work of art brings together the social interaction and the users in a historic collection of recorded interactions with the work. As time passes, the history of the work will evolve both online using the Facebook page, as well as how each user interacts with the work.

Facebook Page

Step 1: Paint Canvas - Night and Day Glow Paints

Be creative and know that the mixing of glow paints with day glow colors is effective for having multiple patterns show up between day view and night view. I suggest that you apply paint for each in the same pattern, but use different patterns for each type of paint. Example drip paint for day, draw lines with night paints; mixing together and make each consistent. This will help give each their own character.

Here I created layers and layers of color from paint directly from the container. The detailed landscape created when looked at with magnification creates an entirely new experience with the same work.

Step 2: Add Magnets in Paint to Seal Them Into the Work

Be sure to line up the polls of your magnets before attaching them to canvas. Mark a 'set' of magnets with nail polish. This will help to verify that each is lined up before attaching. Since we are using two magnets to attract and hold the objects to the canvas, all magnets attached to the canvas must face the same direction, and all magnets on the objects must face the same aligned position to allow all objects and locations to be interchangeably connectable. When attaching magnets to objects, in my case mineral crystals, I used a transparent 5 minute epoxy with a strength of 1500 pounds per square inch. If using flat canvas, consider adding a stainless steel sheet behind the canvas to allow the magnets to connect in any location. Heavier objects hold best magnet to magnet with little between them. An additional touch was holding cabinet for the extra elements when not used.

Step 3: Create a Social Space for Your Work and Provide a Device to Capture Media to Upload

I created a page on Facebook to share the posts from the provided iPhone. Images of magnified elements or videos of the interaction will build up over time creating a history for the work.

FaceBook Page

Step 4: Embellish

My first attempt at mastering this art form allowed me to experiment with rock minerals, glowing paints, unique light sources and magnifying beautiful colorful landscapes found within the painting at scale. Each of these elements led to embellishments in the work, provided inspiration to add tools for viewing, magnifying and exploring. This embellishment solved for how I should provide for interaction, all embellishments allowed me to bring my art closer to the explorer.

I keep functionality of the user in mind with the addition of the glass shelf and magnetic element case added. Luckily an electrical outlet for the lighting was also nearby the installation location, allowing for minimal exposure of power cables. Also included with this was a coffee table book.