Member project: Cosplay prop for Chappie costume
This weekend, I helped decorate for a Halloween Party at my sister’s house. There’s an odd hallway that connects their main large public room to the rest of the house. It’s used for storage, and has shelves on both sides.
This year, I decided to decorate that area by creating a video wall effect. Something like a Television Control Room of Terror!
To start with, I simply filmed my brother-in-law with a video camera – only from WAY TOO CLOSE! I shot macro video of his eye and mouth. Then I edited the footage to create a custom looping DVD.
In the hallway, I set up multiple monitors. These are old monochrome standard definition monitors that were on their way to the recycling center. They were professional monitors, which means that they can pass a video signal through from one monitor to another, making it easy to daisy chain several monitors.
Next to the monitors, I set up three DVD players (including one car DVD player – hey I use what I got!) to play the three different custom DVDs – Right Eye, Left Eye, and Mouth. Each of the three videos is a different length, so they will continue to drift out of sync. That way, as they loop, the visuals are a continuingly changing experience through the whole evening.
Above the monitors, I set up a video camera on a tripod and fed it to some of the monitors. That way, when party-goers look at the monitor, they also see themselves. Having feedback on some of the monitors adds a sense of interactivity to the project.
After the monitors and DVD players were all set up, I covered the rest of the shelving with black paper. In a dark hallway, lit only be black lights, it’s a great effect of creepy images floating in the hall.
If you want more details on this project, I made a full step-by-step write-up on Instructables.
I’ve lived in Bay View for the past 9 years and I have always loved trick-or-treating night here in the neighborhood (despite the fact that it isn’t actually on halloween!). After I got some good photos of great costumes last year, I wanted to run a photo booth in front of the house on trick-or-treating night. Add some procrastination, python and a couple of arduinos to a good idea and voila: Bay View Boo! was born!
I started by building a shelf to hold the photo booth (and double for an extra shelf in the garage for the other 364 days of the year). On the shelf, I set up an HDMI monitor, driven by my laptop and a logitech webcam for the camera. The electronics were simple: I had an orange sanwa arcade button attached to an arduino to trigger the photo to be taken and another Arduino connected to a thermal printer from Adafruit to print out a link to the photo. On the computer, i had a Processing sketch to drive the display, perform the countdown when the button was pressed and send the filename to the printer. I also ran a little python app that pushed the images to Google Cloud Storage. An AppEngine app displayed the photos. I was in a bit of a rush to finish Saturday as I spent half the afternoon at Fantasticon and in my haste I forgot to add page navigation links to the front page. Oops! Ah well. I had the site updated after i tore everything down for the night. I had one trick or treater ask me if I had “like a raspberry pi in there or something” and I said, “Nope, but i have a couple of Arduinos!”. “Cool”. Cool, indeed.
None of the individual pieces of the project were very difficult and it all came together pretty nicely. The most gratifying part of the night was hearing from people that they had heard from other people to come over and get their photos taken. Word spreads quickly in Bay View! I’ll be posting all the code to a github repo shortly and I’ll update this post with the link when I’ve done that.
For next year, I plan on making a couple of changes. First, I want to have a nicer enclosure for the photo booth and something more permanent to mount the button and printer in than the white cardboard box i cut holes in with an XActo knife. The second thing I want to do is make some interchangeable front pieces for the booth. I could use this for lots of events and it would be great to be able to bolt on something that was more thematically appropriate than a painter’s drop cloth with holes cut in it and secured by shiny duct tape! Ah well, it got the job done and after a while it was dark enough that no one could see my shoddy craftsmanship! That brings me to my final change for next year: lighting. I had one 250W light ready for when it got dark and it basically sucked. To everyone who showed up in awesome costumes once it was dark: I’m sorry. I’ll have better lights next year so everyone can get a great looking photo, even if you don’t come out before the sun goes down!
Here are a few of my favorite photos from the booth. I hope everyone who stopped by had a good time and enjoyed your photo! I’ll see you again next year! In the mantime, head over to Bay View Boo! to browse all the photos from the evening!
Dim the lights, get out the jack-o-lanterns, and send the little ones to bed, because on Friday, 31 October, it’s time for…
Hack-o-ween is Nottingham Hackspace’s Halloween party, with elaborate jack-o-lanterns, plenty of snacks and drinks, spooky movies, scary music, and plenty of fun.
There will be a costume contest, so be sure to get your maker skills out to wow the competition!
The party starts at 7pm, and will continue until the werewolves howl outside!
Be there, or look out for hauntings!
Electroluminescent Wire (EL Wire) is an easy way to make things glow. It's colorful, flexible, and easy to power with batteries.
I'll be teaching what EL wire is, how to connect it, and what is needed to make your own glowing art.
Included in the class fee are 1m or so of wire, a battery-powered inverter, and an information sheet for soldering your own splices and connections.
Learn how to measure and cut the length of wire you need, and what is needed to power your creation.
See what you can make for halloween!
Halloween coming up too fast for you?
Come to THS to make a robot costume!
We'll provide tools, aluminum foil, and maybe some cardboard.
Come and have fun building!
Nottingham Hackspace’s first Halloween Party will take place on Saturday, 27 October, starting at 7:00pm.
Enjoy spooky movies, terrifying music, gruesome snacks and frightening cocktails as we raise the dead and dance our way to Hell with grim grinning ghosts coming out to socialise.
Costumes mandatory, and the more handmade, the better.
For more information, contact your Ghost Host, Kate, at email@example.com.
Want an extra-special detail added to your costume this year? I’m teaching a short series of classes on theatrical makeup starting this Saturday, the 8th, at 5pm-7pm [possibly shorter depending on the number of students]. The class will cost $10-20, based on the size of the class. the more people show up, the cheaper it’ll be, so bring your friends! The first class will be going over bruises, scrapes, and small superficial wounds. The second class will focus on deeper cuts, peeling skin, bites like the one pictured, and some serious gore. The third class will be focusing on embedded items, like pencils, knives, and so on, and will include a recipe for washable, edible theater blood and we’ll be making our own embeddable items!
Days: October 8th, 15th, 22nd
Cost: $10-20 based on attendance [the more the