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What about air guitar? 

Interactive Apps

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Yep, air guitar. 

Who doesn’t love a good air guitar? Tell ya what though, imagine being able to play and actual air guitar using glove. Well, that’s my project for interactive apps. 

Here’s the plan. Gonna use an arduino nano board, a bunch of either switches or touch buttons, and a nice pair of gloves and I’m gonna program four switches to play open bass guitar notes for the right hand…and four switches to alter them by fret 1-4. Thus giving a nice all round air guitar pair of gloves. 

The problem I’m facing is: 

A: My lack of understanding with coding. 

B: Playability regarding the wiring process. 

C: I’m gonna need a bigger board. 

So far I have bought a breadboard, solder less wires, two lots of switches (some touch and some on/off). 

Including a tutorial on how to program multiple buttons. 

So. Wish me luck xx

Audio Visual Project Presentation 

So. As I have a very “ooo look shiney” way of being, meaning my likes and attitude changes so radically that I make snow flake shapes look premeditated. My visual project went from moving patters, to music controlled images, to air guitar gloves controlled images,  to typography. To be honest, typography is the one that fitted best. 

The Reason = 2015

Two years ago this summer I met the inspiration for me to start my university journey. Paige, now a good friend, came to me while I was walking the dog after my marriage broke down. We got talking and she said she was a uni graduate of BA Film and production. Fascinating. Got me thinking, I want to learn and be qualified. 

So I applied to be a teacher. Completed a foundation year but teaching wasn’t for me. Music was the back bone to who I was. So, I applied for CMT. Since then I’ve seen some of Paige’s work, of which is her typography and graphic design business:

https://www.facebook.com/MoonDustMedia/

Typography Video by MoonDust Media

It is inspiring, imaginative, creative and fluent… Just like music. Just like art. Sunday April 30th, I decided I was doing typography. 

The song September means a lot too. The same year I met Paige was the same year I began DJing. One of the first dance floor filling tunes I played was September by Earth, Wind and Fire.

The Project

Part one of this module saw me make a 3 min video in 15 minutes of a fly failing to climb a window:

Go Fly Go

Part two, I didn’t make a video for as I didn’t know what it was that was required. So, I won’t lie, I blagged it. Went to lesson and talked about what I like the sound of or at least what fascinated me after seeing this video:

Absolutely Magic
So, I wanted my final project to be a fun, colourful, disco typography video. Almost as if the words are performing a dance routine to the music and in traditional form of a disco. Dark room with multiple shapes and sizes of bright colourful lights. Picking the twirly ‘?’ and ‘!’ for questions and answers in the verse, then the word ‘Stars’ written in the shape of stars stealing the word ‘Night’ away as the song suggests. With the small piece of hidden love being the ‘ha ha haiiiiii!!!!’ and the smiling sun. ‘Ha’ being one part of the word happy with a happy sun, sunshine being the personification of the happy feeling to most, other than albinos and vampires. Having the ‘BaaDeeYaa’ include firework like effects while adding my personality to the video through the subliminal messages and not being afraid to use a lot of pink. Everything you see in the video is created using font and text. 

My restrictions was the video program I used. Being the tight git I am, I downloaded a free program that watermarked the video and took away the finished 100% quality. Because I took as long as I did for the artistic idea to burst in my brain there is a restriction to my own output. Too many delays with the preview proved to be problematic with timing, causing a few moments to be a little off. Other than that the reaction from the audience, which for this project was my class mates, was exactly what I wanted. They awed at the artistry of how it worked, laughed at the parts I put in for humour and went with me in the journey into disco town. 

The Future

The course is boring. But only because I have let myself be bored. I have deliberately done the minimum needed to pass instead of utilising every thing I have on offer from the course tutors and university as a whole. Year two will see me expand on typography to incorporate video, moving images and some creative ventures I’m yet to dream up. My end goal being the capacity to provide a production, almost as alliterate as I am able to allow, to anybody. Being able to do anything. 

A great man once said: “Gav, you can do anything you set your mind to. It is one of your greatest traits”.

So, maybe I should set my mind to this…and in the words of Magnus Magnusson, I have started so I’ll finish.

Air Guitar! Not the McBusted song! 

This device was made with the intention of being fun. Having a MIDI controller literally at your fingertips. 

Before I go into it, there is a lot of growth with the hardware and even more with the software capabilities. At the moment it sits as press on release of midi activation switches. This cuts the sound of the note taking away a feel of a real guitar. Also, changing the buttons to touch reactive activators with velocity controlled synth, cue my complete lack of MaxMSP enthusiasm. This would free up the feel options to give more flow. 

Second half would be hardware. Wireless and self powered would be awesome!! 

It is a toy. Simply put. Toy. Imagine getting a pair of these at Christmas. 

Hard worker reaps what they sow

So, I have struggled hard with the audio visual project until one night it hit me. Earth, wind and fire. Well, the September addition of a captain planet comic. Gave me the idea of typography. Now, I’m not an expert or have the foggiest of what typography is, but with a little research I found out it’s word art to music…lush. 

So, as I have no experience and, never mentioned before that I’m a DJ, I thought to call it karaography. 

My project is a surprise…well, the visual is, you can kinda guess what it’s gonna be. 

I found a program called Filmora which is free (watermark in the video for my troubles) that I can use at home…honestly, its been fun. 

Roll on Friday. 3 days until the assessment and I started today. 

Swish. Don’t tell Aidan but I haven’t begun my guitar gloves yet. 

When you feel a drop out coming and need a chat!

So, this is officially my university portfolio blog for year one of CMT. For those of you reading this and who are on the course with me, may be seeing less of me after this year is finished. 

I have found the course to be rather boring. That’s not a reflection on the course but more of a self reflective viewing as I have been the one letting myself get bored. Advice to the flailing…talk to you tutor. I aired my points with Matt, those being the points of me not having the drive to complete the assignments and he talked to me about the end of year one being a milestone and that, if needed, I can transfer to another and not have a wasted uni start. This is fab news, though I haven’t really made any progress on my assignments since March. 

Well, that changed after our chat. Since then I have almost completed my annotations and got a great video idea for Stefhan (good old Ray Charles track with me doing a kaleidoscope style video). #boomerang 

Now, the main issue. Building my guitar gloves. I’m not altering the code as I have it working…basic but working. I’ll build them in the next week or so and update my progress. 

Now. Gotta finish my paperwork and go podcasting. 
Fozzy out! 

Moving Pictures

So far, 90% of this module I’ve learned using YouTube. To my tutors, this is why I have not bothered coming in as I feel I’m learning more independently (probably as each of us learn at different speeds).

#wheresthe£9k/yeargoing

For my project, the physical aspect of the air guitar, I’m waiting on parts to arrive. So, whole waiting I’ve concentrated on the visual aspect, mainly through more YouTube videos. 

processing tutorials

Set of 20 videos a showing how to do this… 

Yep, coded that myself…following the Gents instructions. 

Moving on #sillypun I’m aiming to have full control over the balls. They will pause when no sound, and move when sound. 
Win. 

My Project for Interactive Apps

In light of my current project, The Air Guitar Gloves, I feel the need to express all.

Introducing The Air Guitar Gloves

Following on from other items of multi purpose, I wanted to create a toy that is fitting for children as well as fitting for the budding musician. As a lover of guitar hero I imagined a world without an actual controller. Or more apt, a world where air guitar actually played music. Using a teensy board, several wires and a handful of switches, I set about programming the notes into the tiny device to turn it into a MIDI device capable of playing the first five frets on all strings for a standard four string bass guitar.

What had to happen then was testing (see other CMT related blogs). Testing saw the requirement for more usable switches. Touch switches were sourced, and have proven to be a much more suitable fret board adjuster and string activator than a simple push button. Alas, these require some code adjustment as they require 3V power to insure the button reads as active. The code is currently set to INPUT_PULLUP which means the signals are reversed and LOW means the note plays. Now the code needs to be adjusted so that LOW means off. Well, that was the theory behind them. Safe to say they didn’t work. So I changed back to oroginal push switches. 

To wire the switches in, gloves were sourced and the switches were stitched to the outside while the wiring threaded through the interior. One ground wire that connects to all the switches and one individual activator/pin wire for each individual and relevant button. 

The Look

Think Michael Jackson wearing two gloves while mimicking Phil Lynott  playing Smoke On The Water. 

I’m hoping this to be altered in the future to become easier to use. To be wireless and have the coding reduced to clear. The incorporation of MaxMSP to help with the fluidity of the gloves including wireless application and self sustained sound, would be awesome.