Brief statement of the revised artistic premise, including identification of unresolved creative questions.

For our final project we are leaning towards representing changes in nature within a suitcase as some sort of “dynamic snow globe” wherein the suitcase symbolizes the globe and our robotic motions inside represent idyllic scenes of changing seasons.

In short, instead of one idyllic scene, we aim to create something that changes visually over time and also gives a full sensory experience for the viewers through some motion/actuation/lights/fan on or off/sound etc.

Our artistic premise comes in play when we identify what this stands for. A snow globe can stand for “a perfect world” or “an image of being trapped in a perfect world” and we wish to cycle through all the states of this “untouchable world” before the viewer.

Will the experience we create evoke a positive or negative emotion for the viewer?

The experience for the viewer will depend on their personality; if the fleeting nature of time proves to be nerve-racking, it may be a negative emotion. But if the continuous cycling of the world is comforting to them, it may be a positive experience.

Will the viewer have control of this world we are designing that in reality cannot be controlled?

It is possible we give them a type of “control” over the cycle, like their distance to the suitcase might affect the speed of the cycle but the viewer will never be able to change the idealism of the perfect world we create underneath “the glass.”

Sketch of an idealized final result

Brief explanation of the most pivotal technical questions: what unresolved elements of implementation will make or break the idea?

How will we make the seasons change?

How will the changes be continuous, without need of reset?

How will we decide the light colors associated with each season?

What materials will we make our tree out of? And how are the seasons portrayed with the rotation?

What will the patterns cut out in our acrylic be?

If we decide to have some type of user control, how will we do this? What will that look like? Will it be a distance sensor that controls the speed of rotation/fans?

The idea will be mostly defined by how well each season is portrayed and the speed at which the cycles occur. We will need to make sure we design it so the acrylic really makes it look like a trapped perfect world, and the confetti will have to move at the correct times and reflect the light in a purposeful way.

Text and sketches outlining a proof-of-concept experiment which may resolve the idea. What can be built and tested in about a week which will reveal the most new information?

A starting point for this project is by starting to implement one of the many things that contribute to the “season changing”. We think that the outside the box lighting experience is quite important to achieving this effect and we can perhaps start with that. To do this – we can create this mechanism:

The acrylic plates lining the suitcase along with the lights.

Alongside, we should start building our rotating tree.

Identification of any immediate material needs

  • fans
  • motor for tree to spin on
  • shiny confetti to trap under the “glass”
  • acrylic to be the “glass” – possible laser cut patterns into this for the light to shine through
  • LED light strip
  • materials for our tree (we are going to experiment with in class materials and laser cutting to figure what we like the most)