Interactive Halloween Mirror





Introduction: Interactive Halloween Mirror

About: We are the Lichtbaendiger from germany. We are manufacturer of optical glasses. If you like to see what we do, you are welcome to visit our website.

We have made an interactive Halloween mirror.

It is a computerprogram with a face recognition module. It use a webcam to take a live video and put funny Halloween masks on the faces on the screen.

Step 1:

You need just a few things for the Halloween mirror:

  • Computer with a monitor or a Laptop
  • Webcam
  • Computerprogram (can download here)
  • Decoration for the monitor (like dark cloth, spiderwebs,...)

Step 2: The Program

The program is written in processing. This is a language developed for electronic arts and visual design. It is based on the java programming language and generates java bytecode.

Step 3: The Frame

The decoration frame was painted with corelDraw.

The field in the middle is for the video.

Step 4: The Masks

The Halloween masks also made with corelDraw.

We made nine different masks, they will change all 5 seconds.

Step 5: Installation

We uses the Intel openCV library for the face recognition. You must install it first.

You will find it here:

Important, you must load the version 1.0. After installation you need to restart the your system.

If have no java virtual machine installed on your computer, you should do it:

And check that you have this two DLLs in your SYSTEM32 folder. Most computers will have them. If not, you will find them on Microsofts website, or ask a friend.

After this you can download the installationprogram of the Halloween mirror, unzip and install it.

If the video is not so smoothly on your computer, then you can try to reduce the resolution.

Step 6:

Now you can set the monitor on a good place, like the buffet or near the house door. So every coming guest can see it.

You can make some decoration at the monitor, like black cloth or spiderweb, bats, ...

If you like our program and use it next halloween, please take some pictures of it and send them to us.

We wish you many fun with our Halloween mirror

The Lichtbaendiger from germany
Ruth and Thomas

An update after 6 years ;-)

I have made the program as an experimental Android App. It runs on several devices. I also tried it on an old Samsung Netbook with Android x86. It works.

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    25 Discussions

    Now I have an Android App of the Halloween Mirror.

    It worked great!! Thanks!!
    Souce code wou be cool thou

    Is it possible to change out the frame and the mask files? I'd like to use this for our church's fall festival and change some of the bloody masks to some that are more friendly for small children.

    I know that the last comment is over a year old but I'm hoping the author still checks occasionally. I just stumbled upon this instructable today and am trying to get it to work on my Windows 7 SP1 computer but all I get is a gray screen. I see that others have had this problem but I haven't seen anyone post a definitive answer to this problem.

    I have followed the instructions step-by-step, first installing OpenCV_1.0, then rebooting, then copying the DLLs and running Halloweenspiegel.exe. I even copied the DLLs to the SysWOW folder along with the system32 folder, just to make sure.

    When I run the program, the activity light on my webcam turns on but all I get is a gray screen. If I run the program without the webcam I get a message complaining that no webcam was found.

    Halloween is only a few weeks away and, along with all the other preparations, I would like to get this working in time to set it up for the kids. Does anyone know what might be wrong? As I said, I've followed the step-by-step instructions. Any help would be much appreciated. Happy Halloween!

    1 reply

    I've checked it with Win7. The gray screen comes if the OpenCV is newer than 1.0 and if these DLLs MSVCP71.DLL MSVCR71.DLL couldn't be found.
    If these DLLs are there it works.
    Please check it.

    I have also installed this program and have the gray screen issue. I installed OpenCV, and I have placed the DLL files in system32, however this hasn't resolved the issue. I think there should be detailed instructions on how to setup the folders and properly name them because it didn't say I had to create a "lib" folder until I got an error saying it was required. Would love to get this working in time for the halloween party next week! :)

    3 replies


    you can also do it step by step:
    - first install openCV V1.0 (not an other version)
    - reboot
    - unzip the
    - copy the folder "halloweenspiegel" (with lib) to your programmfolder
    - copy the DLL to your system32 folder: DSVL.dll myron_ezcam.dll
    - check that you have the following DLL in system32: MSVCP71.DLL MSVCR71.DLL

    hope that works
    Greetings from Germany

    Thanks, it works now! On my computer, I had to put V1.0 instead of V2.3.1

    Is it possible to use different mask / frame? I would like to design a high resolution version in photoshop that will go well with the decorations! I can share them on here

    Thanks again, this is lots of fun! :)

    I still am having the same issues I would get a grey screen and the pc reboots

    Here is what i did for the instal am i doing something wrong??

    1) installed Java ( have tried multiple versions from 1.4,1.5,1.6 latest)
    2) installed open CV V1.0
    3) installed Halloweenspiegel to C:\Program files
    4) copied halloween dll's (DSVL.dll myron_ezcam.dll) files to win\system32
    5) verified MSVCP71.DLL MSVCR71.DLL are in system 32
    6) rebooted

    After doing these steps once I launch Halloweenspiegel I get a grey screen and the system reboots.

    if I disconnect the usb camera I get an error message stating no camera detected

    my only thought is I missed something or the camera I am using is not compatible (which is a Logitech Quickcam pro 4000 Model# V-UT16)

    BTW I am running this on a XP sp3 machine as well

    I anyone can shed some light on this it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

    Ugh, this looks way kewl, but it is not working - indicates a file is missing. Can you advise? Not sure if this is for this year.

    3 replies

    Ups, yes you need two more DLLs. Most Computers still have them.


    in the SYSTEM32 folder


    Oh My - also just visited your website! Your glasses are amazing! I'll be sending you a separate email for some more information. Beautiful work!

    Thanks much for the reply! I checked these and have them, but also realized after reviewing your instructions very closely that I installed version two. I uninstalled version two and reinstalled version one, however, now I get the gray screen some have referred to below. I also made sure I had the myron_ezcam.dll in the sys32 as well but still getting the gray screen. :( Any other suggestions? This looks so incredible! :(

    If you're getting the grey screen, make sure the myron_ezcam.dll is also in sys32, with the two others mentioned above.

    Great!  Can't wait to hack in some of my own pics!

    Really cool idea, i just wish i could get it to work on my computer. All i get is the blue screen of death :P

    1 reply

    Hi, do you have installed Java and openCV (don't forget the restart)? And is DSVL.dll and myron_ezcam.dll in your system32 directory? Maybe your Webcam didn't work with opencv?

    I have installed OpenCV. Processing, and Java Runtime. When I run the Halloweenspiegel only see a blank grey screen?? How can I fix this :(

    1 reply

    Hi, do you have restart your system? And is DSVL.dll and myron_ezcam.dll in your system32 directory?

    This is wundervoll! I hope that translated correctly. Thank you for sharing this before Halloween. We always invite the neighborhood over to set up on our driveway. We set out a long table at the front of the driveway for all the neighborhood candy bowls. The kids in costume go from bowl to bowl. One stop covers about 10 houses. Every family brings their own home made chili and we mix it all together in one pot. It turns out to be the greatest chili you could ever eat. I'm going to set my laptop up on a table outside so any one without a costume can look in the "mirror" and instantly be transformed. Thank you so much. Gary Palmer - Phoenix, Arizona, USA