Touch Sensors 1

12.27.2014 – Touch Sensors & Moon Painting

Alrighty…  I’ve decided that the Moon Painting is done.  Just as it is.  Unlit. Through my many experiments with light over the last month, I have developed a new technique for getting light into art, and I have many more, better ideas that I’ll have to build in to the construction from the start.

So, as I was looking at it today, I just was struck by it as it was, under a good overhead light.  It produces great shadows.  It looks pretty realistic and it creates a distinct mood.  I’d like to do several more of these, and some with lighting built in 😉 .  Acrylic on plaster and canvas.

Brad Ormand Moon Painting

The experiments with light animations and 3D art techniques, starting, initially, with this moon painting have led to many more surprises which have lead to what I’m doing now.

Speaking of which, I have been trying to develop touch sensors in my lab for some of the UI art that I have been starting on.  Eventually, I want to have a method for predictable capacitance (within a certain threshold) that comes out of the sensors I make.  I have done 3 or 4 different designs, with metal foil top and bottom layers (both staggered and whole), different dielectrics and different top cover material (mainly plexiglass).  Some of them work great, and some of them just completely failed.  I imagine I’ll be able to pick up about 10 or 20 millivolts of change over a quick charge or release time.  And, I’m still tasked with distinguishing proximity from real touches, because they start reacting before you actually touch them 🙂 .  Later, I want to get the leads coming from the bottom, too.  That’s yet to come.  But, here are two of them that worked okay.  They have a plexiglass top.

Touch Sensors 1

I’m making these to put into my UI animation projects.  For now, they’ll be kind of like what production designers do for movies sets.  They just pretty much sit there and animate according to the humans’ interaction with them.   And, if I get good results with that over the next few months, I’ll integrate them into my synth projects that I have been putting more work into, recently, as well.

Brad Ormand - Touch Sensor Test

So, there it is.  It’s been really exciting choosing the materials and trying to get these sensors together – working with materials and physics – wild, wondrous world.  The work is fun and it’s going towards a much bigger sphere of production.  Can’t wait to get something stable so that I can start putting them into real systems.

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