Day 2: our first major hurdle(s)… Last night we tested the projector inside the warehouse space. At 5000 lumens, brightness was not a problem, but the limited throw certainly was. The model of projector we’re using needs a lot of distance (throw) between it and the surface to be projected on, to create a large enough image for us to work with.
Whilst there is a lot of space in the warehouse, we couldn’t figure out a way to give us enough of a distance for a top-down projection that would feel immersive. The best we managed was around 4m x 3m, and once the area includes physical objects, this doesn’t leave much room for people to move.
We started rethinking the way we could present our concept: the possibility of using light boxes that would extend outside the projection area, or projecting on a wall instead of the floor. None of the options we came up with felt as strong as the top-down concept we’ve been working with recently.
So we’re on the hunt for a second projector. In the same way that multiple computer screens can be linked together for more desktop real estate, we can combine multiple projectors to increase the area of our work. The issue here is that data projectors are still considered a big ticket item by commercial hire companies. Our budget isn’t going to stretch far enough for us to hire one for a full week (we’ll need to do testing before the Underbelly Arts festival actually kicks off), so we need to call in favours.
In the meantime, we’ll push on with the projector that we have and test it with a rigged mirror. Because projector bulbs don’t like being pointed downward, we’ll instead setup the unit horizontally and bounce the projection from a mirror tilted at a 45 degree angle, sending the image onto the floor.
Rigging a large mirror from the roof of the warehouse will be a major task though, and we’ll need to employ the assistance of some clued up riggers/techies to make sure it’s installed correctly. Onward and upward.