I was given some excellent assistance by my tutor this week, in the form of a Processing sketch that receives OSC data. Using the oscP5 library, this allows me to take information from the Wii remote to OSCulator via Bluetooth, which is then passed on to Processing in OSC format.
Whilst the output of this Processing sketch is a reasonably primitive change in RGB colour mixing (dependant on the XYZ movement of the Wii remote), I don’t imagine that it will take a great deal of work to change this into something I can use as a DMX control.
This basic framework will be the visual side of my project. The next step will be trying to separate distinct messages from multiple Wii remotes at the same time, so that multiple stage lights can be controlled.
I also put together a more thorough concept plan during the week. This provides me with some guidelines for the direction I’ll be taking over the next couple of months and will be presented in the next class.
Aside from general points about the idea and workings of this project, I mapped a brief movement of a ballet dancer. This was done to give me an insight into how I may be able to expect the Wii remotes to move when attached to a performers body. It was quite a valuable step in the process, as I immediately spotted some ways to cut down the amount of data I will attach events to. I also took some sound I had worked on previously and changed parameters/triggers to fit the clip, so that I’m able to give an example of what certain movements may be able to do.
The concept plan also allowed me to think more clearly about how I imagine the layout of the performance space will come together. Using stage lights instead of video or other visuals will allow me to give a sense of movement and changing space during the piece. Pairs of lights at the front, side and rear of stage will probably suffice to create this effect.
Importantly, I now need to nail down performers to work with for this project. At the moment, it’s still just a concept, and I imagine that once I begin working with the body, new problems will emerge that I hadn’t thought of before.
I do have a backup plan, should working with dancers prove too difficult: the work will become an interactive installation. Instead of a composed piece for dancers to work with, all sound and light will be looped. Once a participant enters the space, they will be able to change and interact with the sound and light via the Wii remote. This fallback uses all the same technology as my initial concept, so it shouldn’t be too much of a problem to change my direction, even at a late stage.