Sound reactive light sculpture brainstorming

The Glow Festival is an annual Santa Cruz event that supports the local Museum of Art and History.

The IdeaFabLab Santa Cruz is our local makerspace.

We at the fablab are planning to make an interactive sculpture for the festival. The concept is that the sculpture will have two modules. The “light” module will be a peacock with LED illuminated feathers that will be designed by Jordan Layman.

The “sound” module is my part of the project. We wanted the panel to be large (exaggeratedly so) and kid friendly. I wanted it to also be capable of producing actual music. What I have so far is strongly inspired by skinnerbox’s 2049 max for live percussion synth, but with the addition of a 4-voice melodic wavetable synth. Left side is the sequencer section. All patterns can be randomized. All patterns can be saved and recalled. 16 presets available. Right side is the synth section. All parameters can be randomized. All parameters can be saved and recalled. 8 presets available. I hope this set of controls is attractive (looks like fun to play), allows for happy accidents as well as intentional music, and provides easy ways to recover from sad accidents. I will probably implement all of this in Supercollider on a, but that’s somewhat TBD. Apologies but you’ll need to zoom to see the labels. Big circles are illuminated arcade buttons. Small circles are illuminated push encoders. This panel currently works out to about 4 feet wide and 2 feet tall.

If looking at this inspires any ideas you’d like to share with me, please do! I’m especially interested in interesting ways to make the sound and light work together. The light module has two sections of “feathers” and for each we can control brightness, color, X position, Y position.

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I’m getting some sense of color coordination between the instrument and the peacock, not just similar palette but that certain instances would align with certain colors. That seems valuable.

Yes, I agree. Definitely something we should explore.