Textile interfaces : Sensitive Light Flowers
Updated: Nov 28, 2020
I was inspired by one old pro-democracy poem from Thailand.
"The more you pick, the more flower will bloom"
The quote was implied to the young generation who believe in democracy and human rights fighting for justice and a better society in Thailand. They have to face state brutality and injustice much time. But the hope of the people will never be destroyed.
The more you touch, the flower will shine.
The more state brutality, the people will rise like an eternal flower.
Making the Sensor
I decided to used conductive ink to create a capacitive sensor.
The design of the sensor was inspired by Arabic mosaic art. I used this design because I want every part of the drawing to be connected.
I did a DIY stencil technique to create a complicated graphic for the sensor. Firstly, I created the illustration file in Adobe illustrator and print it out with a transparent sticker and attack it with paper.
If I have a vinyl cutter, I would use it to cut the graphic out for me and everything will be much easier. However, I have to cut it by hand due to the lack of tools. After that, I pulled out the part that I need to paint. This process went for a couple of hours.
When finished cleaning up, I can apply the conductive ink to the sensor. and the final step is to pull out the leftover sticker.
- Bare Conductive Ink
- Adafruit Neopixels
- Arduino Nano 33IOT
To get the capacitive sensor working, I followed the tutorial from Bare Conductive site. The tutorial was very straight forward and user friendly. After getting the sensor value, I realized that the value came in a huge range, therefore I decided to calibrate the sensor at the beginning of the sketch to get the maximum and the minimum value.
When I got the maximum and the minimum value, I used it to map the value with the light position. In the end, the light position will be reactive with user interaction.
Assemble sensor with light
To build a durable structure for the piece, I decided to use a foam board as my prototyping material. I mounted the Neopixels light with the base layer and elevate the sensor up a little to diffuse the light.
I also marked the position of the light to match the position of the sensor.