Final Project: Soot Spirit Run


Row House Cinema

The wall we projected on

Soot spirit in Spirited Away

Flyers for the game

To celebrate the Studio Ghibli showcase at the Row House Cinema, we decided to do a large interactive game inspired by “Spirited Away” in the parking lot next to the theater. The installation was done the night of the 13th of December.

We began setup at around 6 pm. The game was up and running by 9 pm, which is the time we advertised. We had created little flyers that introduced the running time and location of our game. We printed the flyers, left them inside the theater on the concession stand for movie seers to pick up, and also personally handed out flyers to nearby passer-bys.  

How it works

Front stage

It takes two participants to complete the game. Each player holds a black cylinder (mimicking the coal that the soot spirit carries) with one hand and taps a silver or gold star button (mimicking the star candy that the soot spirit eats) with the other hand to control the game character, the soot spirit, to move left or right.

crafting controllers

The game controller(Made up of Makey Makey and conductive parts)

Tap to move the character

The goal is to avoid getting hit by the spotlights and get the soot spirit to the far right of the game stage. Participants need to coordinate with each other in order to win the game because if two people press the star buttons at the same time, the soot spirit will not move anywhere.


We have a Unity made game that is run on a laptop. The laptop is connected to a projector, which projects the game onto a wall. Instead of playing the game through a keyboard, we used MakeyMakey to allow external control of the left and right arrow keys on the keyboard. MakeyMakey requires the use of two hands to connect to ground and the electrical input of the circuit. We used graphite powder to cover the cylinder, and golden/silver leaf to cover the star button to ensure conductivity. The player is able to grab the black cylinder with one hand for circuit’s ground connection and tap the start button to give electrical signals to the left or right input of MakeyMakey. The entire setup is powered by a gasoline powered generator.


Looking out 2 – Qiao Yin

Generative video for LED media facade of Rockheim

The generative video for LED media facade of Rockheim (Norway’s national museum of pop and rock), Trondheim. The facade is a relatively low resolution but wraps around the “box” in all directions with varying pixel density.

The “box” design of Norway’s National Museum of Rock and Pop Music was inspired by the museums’ collection. Photorealistic images of album covers of Norwegian music are printed across hundreds of panels of glass.

The interesting part of this is that the outer shell of the box sort of represent the inner atmosphere of the museum. And From the outside view, the “box” coordinates with the building pretty well. The old looking museum forms an obvious contrast to the modern-looking box.

Sep. 12 In-class exercise-Johnny, Qiao, Sujay

Arduino Light Sensitive Bar Graph

Team: Johnny Wu, Sujay Kotwal, Qiao Yin

The project uses Light Dependent Resistor or a photocell as the input sensor. The internal resistance of LDR decreases as the intensity of incident light increases. The LDR is connected in a voltage divider circuit with a 10K ohms resistor. Arduino measures the voltage across the LDR at the analog input pins. The input voltage is mapped by arduino and depending on the intensity of light, the mapped and quantized input signal is used to drive the 3 LEDs connected at the digital output pins of arduino. The 3 LEDs give a visual representation of intensity of incident light.

Looking Out 01 – Qiao Yin


The light installation creates floating graphic objects which animate through space as they do through time. The creators constructed a phantom effect of light with millions calibrated beams.

The visual story follows the journey of a digital form. It begins by passing through the Light Barrier, so that this digital form transcends the limits of its home reality and enters into our physical one. It then explores the possibilities of its new found physicality, whilst attempting to assert its digital identity. Finally, the form travels through the Light Barrier again to pass away to the next reality.

The reason I found it fascinating is that it consists of deliberately calibrated constructions but the visual effect out of light surpasses the physical limitation and creates a gorgeous and phantom-ish feeling, which is beyond those traditional light usage such as projection or physical light tubes.



Spectra-3 by FIELD – Choreographing a physical-digital system

Created by digital design studio FIELD, Spectra-3 is an audio-visual light installation premiering at London’s Lumiere light festival on 14th January, 2016. It is a physical-digital sculpture that tells three stories of communication through a choreography of movement, animated lights and spatialized sound.

It uses a symbol of human seeking for extraterrestrial civilization as the form to present the interconnection among human. And also it’s stunning and visually engaging,  which becomes an Instagram magnet that spurs a social population. The underlying reason for this phenomenon is also worth exploring when it comes to making an installation a social and interavtive attraction.