“Making Future Magic” is the goal of Dentsu London, the creative communications agency. We made this film with them to explore this statement.
(Click through to Vimeo to watch in HD!)
We’re working with Beeker Northam at Dentsu, using their strategy to explore how the media landscape is changing. From Beeker’s correspondence with us during development:
“…what might a magical version of the future of media look like?”
…we [Dentsu] are interested in the future, but not so much in science fiction – more in possible or invisible magic
We have chosen to interpret that brief by exploring how surfaces and screens look and work in the world. We’re finding playful uses for the increasingly ubiquitous ‘glowing rectangles’ that inhabit the world.
This film is a literal, aesthetic interpretation of those ideas. We like typography in the world, we like inventing new techniques for making media, we want to explore characters and movement, we like light painting, we like photography and cinematography as methods to explore and represent the physical world of stuff.
We made this film with the brilliant Timo Arnall (who we’ve worked with extensively on the Touch project) and videographer extraordinaire Campbell Orme. Our very own Matt Brown composed the music.
Light painting meets stop-motion
We developed a specific photographic technique for this film. Through long exposures we record an iPad moving through space to make three-dimensional forms in light.
First we create software models of three-dimensional typography, objects and animations. We render cross sections of these models, like a virtual CAT scan, making a series of outlines of slices of each form. We play these back on the surface of the iPad as movies, and drag the iPad through the air to extrude shapes captured in long exposure photographs. Each 3D form is itself a single frame of a 3D animation, so each long exposure still is only a single image in a composite stop frame animation.
Each frame is a long exposure photograph of 3-6 seconds. 5,500 photographs were taken. Only half of these were used for the animations seen in the final edit of the film.
There are lots of photographic experiments and stills in the Flickr stream.
The light appears to boil since there are small deviations in the path of the iPad between shots. In some shots the light shapes appear suspended in a kind of aerogel. This is produced by the black areas of the iPad screen which aren’t entirely dark, and affected by the balance between exposure, the speed of the movies and screen angle.
We’ve compiled the best stills from the film into a print-on-demand Making Future Magic book which you can buy for £32.95/$59.20. (Or get the softcover for £24.95/$44.20.)
1. Dom said on 14 September 2010...
Nice work all!
2. anthony said on 14 September 2010...
Really inventive. Great stuff.
3. tobias næss said on 14 September 2010...
Great idea and impressively excecuted. Awesome stuff! Cheers.
4. james said on 14 September 2010...
5. AnthonyE said on 14 September 2010...
Creativity at its finest. Im still trying to grasp how you guys rendered out the result of the virtual cat scan. Could you possibly elaborate on that a bit more?
6. Hauke said on 14 September 2010...
We need this as an App!
7. Omar said on 14 September 2010...
8. johnny green said on 14 September 2010...
beautiful film !
9. nick s said on 15 September 2010...
Five years since the Nokia 3220’s wave messaging, this. Wow.
10. Ben Hosken said on 15 September 2010...
Just lovely. Well done.
11. dotPax said on 15 September 2010...
I totally agree with Hauke! An app would be great.
12. Masa said on 15 September 2010...
If using in music stage will be big wow ! very cool inventive . I very love this system. from Tokyo.
13. Joe Treacy said on 15 September 2010...
Wow! Congratulations. I’m completely knocked out by your creativity…the light extrusion and the entire production!
14. Emma powell said on 15 September 2010...
Amazing project which makes my brain hurt! Great to see more of the process too on flickr.
15. Martin said on 15 September 2010...
Wow, this is stunning – looks like 3D holograms. Please release it as an app!
16. andrea said on 15 September 2010...
Good job guys…
posted on http://www.ipodmania.it/ipad/127-notizie-ipad/3701-lipad-e-magico-abbiamo-la-conferma.html
17. Alex said on 15 September 2010...
Do it with some another device then ipad
18. Zaib said on 15 September 2010...
Now that is what i call innovation
19. Simon said on 15 September 2010...
Beautiful. What’s the music?
20. martin rippon said on 16 September 2010...
ANOTHER POINTLESS WASTE OF TIME.
Nothing innovative with this as this was already done with lasers. Nothing futuristic either, what using an IPAD and a script and then move the ipad to create a light show.
Seriously yawn. Why not spend time in designing something new, innovative and useful that people can use instead useless piece of junk that has already been created by someone else, playgrisum.
Design should can change people life for the better, its should improve it and not hinder it with another useless tool, we already have many of these. So “Making Future Magic”, you already using old technology and the magic has already been created before. Rethink what it is that you want to create and think originally!
How many people life are you going to change with this? Especially when your a design company. Maybe stick with colors and drawing crayons
21. Dominic said on 16 September 2010...
22. Des said on 16 September 2010...
Beautiful lighting font! Can we have some more pls?
23. MrB said on 17 September 2010...
AnthonyE – looks like they are using Cinema 4D. Theres a few ways you can get the cat scan effect – easy one is just move a `slice shaped cube` through 3d space, use a boolean AND operation in your 3d package between the slice and your scene, and bingo, you have a moving `slice` cat scan type effect which reveals your scene one slice at a time – just render out as an animation.
24. red.dakini said on 19 September 2010...
since this page is open to comments, i suppose then it applies also to questions…
first of all, nice project. i think it´s something that could be extended into various contexts such as art installations, contemporary museums, happenings, to name only a few.
and finally, i´d like to know if there´s some kind of paper of the project, of public access, detailing other information, technical specifications, or some kind of elaboration on the method/software utilized for scanning the cross sections of each model; so, for example, once they leave the 3D app how the outlines are projected in order to be played back as volumetric movies?
25. Gandarinha said on 19 September 2010...
“The Great Design” !
26. christpoher said on 19 September 2010...
now somebody should tell me again that the iPad is not a creative tool! Incredible good work.
27. Berkan Cetinel said on 23 September 2010...
i made some test. and figured a bit out. thank you berg london for the insparation.
28. Skye said on 11 October 2010...
This is absolutely beautiful and compelling. Great work. Please share with us teh song you used. Custom or borrowed? Would love to won it
Ordering the book shortly!
29. Berkan Cetinel said on 15 October 2010...
I try to contact You Guys about the project. None of my e-mails where replied. If anyone can contact me please, it would be helpful.
30. Berkan Cetinel said on 1 September 2011...
Finally I am doing the project.
31. sue Gregor said on 3 December 2011...
This is a brilliant idea. Congratulations I will look forward to seeing what you do next with this!
32. matthew said on 11 May 2012...
WOW Just brilliant and innovative!
33. mona said on 12 July 2012...
Your light painting project is brilliant!! I love it! this is the exciting stuff when we start to play with technology becoming part of our 3-D world. As an experience designer, this is the part that I am looking forward to developing further. Great job!
34. lewis said on 5 December 2012...
Hi i am doing an as level in art andi have produced light photograghy with a nikon d3000 camera, i was wondering if there is a method to this so that i can encorporate in into my own work. i think this is wonderful and i would really like to do it.
35. ScottNE said on 6 February 2013...
A huge thank you for sharing this technique. I’m a college student and this is the first thing I have seen that has truly inspired me in my stop motion work. To think I was just about to get the plasticine out like everybody else. Not any more!
Trackback: Lightpainting mit dem iPad » News, Video » Poshpad 15 September 2010
[…] ausgeklügelten Kombination aus Software uns Aufnahmetechnik typografisches, dreidimensionales Lightpainting als Bewegtbild […]
Trackback: Using the iPad for light painting. | Physical Computing 2010 26 September 2010
[…] for light painting. Posted on September 26, 2010 by physcomp10| Leave a comment The project “Making Future Magic: light painting with the iPad” by BERG London and Dentsu London really inspired me with the film that they created using their […]
Trackback: Lekre lysmaleri laget med iPad 27 September 2010
[…] om hvordan du kan lage dine egne lysmalerier. Mer info om akkurat denne filmen kan dere finne hos BERG og Dentsu London. Litt om musikken, og i god web2.0-stil har de også laget en Blurb-bok med de […]
Trackback: MEX - the strategy forum for mobile user experience - Virtual 3D typography and iPad light painting 12 October 2010
[…] have since come across this example by design agency BERG, where they use stop-motion animation, displayed on the screen of an iPad, to […]
Trackback: Making Future Magic: iPad light painting « Beyondlight 11 November 2010
[…] more at the Dentsu London blog and at the BERG blog. No TweetBacks yet. (Be the first to Tweet this […]
Trackback: Animaciones 3D generadas con el Ipad. | El Planetahuevo de Darkpollo 10 December 2010
[…] no tiene nada que ver con las aplicaciones “normales”. Es una forma de sacarle partido al Ipad como herramienta para generar animaciones en 3D (con mucha paciencia eso si), pero no para v…. Primero la explicación y luego la […]
Trackback: Media Surfaces: The Journey – Blog – BERG 28 January 2011
[…] iPad light painting, we’ve made two films of alternative futures for media. These continue our collaboration with […]
Trackback: iPad News : Light painting in stop motion with the iPad 11 February 2011
[…] exposure light paintings. They created a set of 3D graphics and then programmed the iPad to show a set of cross sections, frame-by-frame, of those graphics. The cross sections were “painted” into the air with long exposure […]
Trackback: iPad Light Painting | unblogged 10 March 2011
[…] Más info de cómo lo hicieron, acá y acá. […]
Trackback: Making Future Magic: iPad light painting 13 March 2011
[…] berglondon.com Filed under Apps. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a Trackback (URL). […]
Trackback: iPad light painting: ologrammi con la tavoletta 19 March 2011
[…] Se voleste approfondire potete sbirciare i blog di Dentsu London e BERG. […]
Trackback: Making Future Magic – iPad light painting 22 March 2011
[…] berglondon.com Filed under Apps. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a Trackback (URL). […]
Trackback: iPad, Art and New Technologies « Oskoui+Oskoui Blog 4 May 2011
[…] For more information, you can check the article on Berg’s blog. […]
Trackback: Love on a post-it | nazia hussain 27 May 2011
[…] and Timo Arnall, both legends in their own right (Timo was one of the makers of Dentsu’s Making Future Magic project, one of my favourite things from last year). Our afternoon’s task was […]
Trackback: Light Painting with iPads | icnt.mx 27 May 2011
[…] BERG London – Making Future Magic : Light Painting With the iPad […]
Trackback: Immaterials: Light Painting Wifi de Timo Arnall | moi blog 21 July 2011
[…] A voir aussi: l’ecriture de typo ou de paysages en 3D grace a un Ipad: http://berglondon.com/blog/2010/09/14/magic-ipad-light-painting/ […]
Trackback: Light as a Medium | MadSci 31 August 2011
[…] control of the form, intensities and color of the light “brush”. A great example is the Berg project using an iPad and 3D simulation […]
Trackback: Pintando con la luz del Ipad « SlapRadioGroove 5 September 2011
[…] berglondon.com/blog/2010/09/14/magic-ipad-light-painting/ […]
Trackback: Making Future Magic – iPad light graffiti animation « davidjnolan 18 September 2011
[…] an awesome 3D light graffiti animation! Made in response to Dentsu London‘s question “What might a magical version of the future of media look like?” the video features 2D cross-sectional stills of 3D imagery, displayed on an iPad screen and […]
Trackback: Rory Hyde Projects / Blog » Blog Archive » ‘Know No Boundaries’: an interview with Matt Webb of BERG London 3 December 2011
[…] incredible Making Future Magic video by BERG and Dentsu […]
Trackback: Nuevos usos para el iPad: a medio camino entre la pintura de luz y el holograma - Gizmodo ES - The gadgets weblog 25 January 2012
[…] de una colaboración entre Dentsu London y Berg el espacio parece llenarse de letras flotantes en las imágenes que nos ofrecen como resultado de […]
Trackback: Weekly H » MAKING FUTURE MAGIC: IPAD LIGHT PAINTING 22 February 2012
[…] BERG Blog >> berglondon.com/blog/2010/09/14/magic-ipad-light-painting/ […]
Trackback: Light painting et réalité augmentée avec iPad | Le Publigeekaire 18 March 2012
[…] vidéo qui suit est le produit du travail de Dentsu Londres et Berg dans le cadre du projet « Making Future […]
Trackback: Textbook Studio » Future Everything & Handmade 29 August 2012
[…] exhibition. We got to have a look at Nicolas Feltron’s latest report and another look at the iPad Light Painting project. Another beautiful piece was the Wilderness Downtown music video, which drew quite a […]