Building my own LightScythe

Pacman made with LightScythe

Pacman made with LightScythe

Last week I got a link from a friend of mine linking to the LightScythe project of Gavin Smith. I was immediately sold of it. I experimented already with long time exposure photography and additional, man-made, light, but I connected with some electronic hardware makes it even more fun. 🙂

By using a full programmable 2 meter LED stripe one can write something into the air while the camera is take the photography (the sensor is exposed). The LED stripe changes its pixel according to a predefined scheme while walking. The sensor get this very bright LED light which ends in showing it bright on the photography. This way you can write something frozen in air which looks very unreal, but not faked in any way!

The LightScythe mainly consists of 2 meter RGB LED stripe from Adafruit. The special feature of this LED stripe is, that every RGB LED can programmed individually. This is done with a Arduino board. Because I already own some hardware from my NG-UAVP quadrocopters I use a bit different hardware setup then Gavin did. I plan to use Lithium-Polymer (LiPo) accumulators and a DC-DC wandler to power the LED stripe (Gavin uses a 6V SLA battery). Secondly I use a normal Arduino Duemilanove board (to be honest, it’s a copy from Seeedstudio called Seeeduino). The outputs of this board can be configured  to be 5V, this way no logic level converters are needed. My current schema can be found here, I hope everything is going to work 🙂

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