Graphic Design

Light Collage

Caio Vita
An investigation on light as a physical material.
Project Major
Major Graphic Design
Year Third Year

Light Collage is an investigation on light as a physical material. This technique gives us a tangible way to create and manipulate images, with a similar effect as the Photoshop's Blend Mode. We can render digital shapes, patterns, colours and typography using paper as a support for light.

Experiments with analogue film

With the use of a projector as a light source, and some optical objects such as prisms, mirrors and lenses, we can control, give direction, distort, and overlay the projected image to create an illusion of transparency, made possible by the Additive Color System also known as RGB.

The process was very organic, and developed by doing. I was discovering the ways of manipulating the light by any kind of optical objects that could change light on a psychical level, and testing it with projections. So the results you see on the website are also a documentation of the process.
I also conducted some experiments with analogue film, but chose to change to digital camera because it was faster and cheaper to experiment with.

Why?

  • As a tool to be able to manipulate digital images manually, adding the serendipity and exploration to the creation process.
  • To create curiosity and intrigue the viewer, to make them wonder if it's a photo, a 3D render, or a mixture of both.
  • As a visual way to communicate the idea of illusion, the blending of the digital and the analogue world.
  • To create patterns and backgrounds for posters, sites, identities, covers...
  • To create motion design by moving the optical objects while filming the projection.

The Tools

Mirrors

You can use the mirrors to direct and to multiply the projected light. The position and the angle of the mirrors will control the direction of the projection. You can multiply the image that's being projected by positioning one mirror in front of another. You can use several mirrors to zigzag the light before it goes to the surface, this way you will create multiple versions of the same image. With the support I've created you can adjust the angle of the mirrors. The idea is to use the mirrors to direct the projection into the paper surface.

Holder

I’ve designed a support for a 15x15cm mirror that can be laser cut in acrylic or wood.

Projector

The projector is our light source, it uses the RGB system to form the image on a surface. It's necessary to use the projector lenses to focus the image according to the distance of the support you are projecting on. The projector should be on top of a table, or a flat surface, with enough space for a big piece of paper.

Paper

You can use the mirrors to direct and to multiply the projected light. The position and the angle of the mirrors will control the direction of the projection. You can multiply the image that's being projected by positioning one mirror in front of another. You can use several mirrors to zigzag the light before it goes to the surface, this way you will create multiple versions of the same image. With the support I've created you can adjust the angle of the mirrors. The idea is to use the mirrors to direct the projection into the paper surface.

Prism

The property of this object is to refract light, it has angled surfaces inside that will separate the light channels and reflect the projected image creating new colours, duplicating the image and distorting it. It should be used in a playful way, you can turn it around, position it in front of the projector, in front of the mirrors or on top of the surface to see how it is affecting the projected image on the surface.

Curious about other projects?  Visit Caio Vita Silveira's website.


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