Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Friday, 22 May 2015
I slept until 9.00 this morning, having gone to bed without any dinner. This video event has taken up 90% of my waking thoughts for the last 2 weeks - the other 10 being my real work - and if anything could have possibly gone wrong only to be put right with 5 minutes to spare, it has.
Last night I blew the amp to the speakers, meaning we could not test the soundtrack. I left the artist at 11.30 pm, and as far as I know he was mapping away on the frontage until about 2.00am. The projectionist said that he could pop in around lunchtime today, bringing a different amp and something to play music through. I hope he remembered to get the transmitter from the mapper, otherwise we still won't be able to carry out a sound-check.
I spent yesterday whiting out windows and blacking out a street light with a 15 foot pole with a brush taped to the end of it. This takes longer than you might think, but it only takes a second or two to blow an amp.
Rachel joked that the electrician has gone off on a long weekend. He actually has. Tonight, I will be in charge of a load of sophisticated electrical equipment of which I have no knowledge at all, having always left electrical stuff to the experts.
I stood on the street last night, watching the meticulous process of 3D mapping against a full-sized building, and marvelled at the way the windows appeared to warp and bend until the image fitted precisely with the real stonework.
I have seen a rough edit of the video, but in one dimension on a small screen, you cannot get any idea of the finished effect. At one point (which I had not seen on the edit) the block-work of the stone front suddenly shifted in and out until great lumps of stone seemed to be on the point of collapsing and falling into the street, all following the actual joint lines which had been mapped in.
Then it was if someone had re-painted the entire building in a brilliant blue, with violet edging around the windows. Moments later, the program grid appeared, filling the front of the pub whilst the artist locked various components into position on his screen. Space Invaders scuttled along below, shooting down aliens which descended from above.
I do not know the man-hours which have gone into this 6 minute display, but I would guess them to be well in excess of 2,250 when you factor in the logistics of it all.
Last night, after about 3 fruitless hours spent trying to fix the amp, I went downstairs and the 300th person asked me what video-mapping was all about. "Just fucking turn up and see for yourself!" was my somewhat curt response.
In 11 hours time, people will be standing in the street, looking up and expecting a sound-track to go with the visuals. What could possibly go wrong?
(This blog just crashed and froze when I tried to load the image. I had to go somewhere else to see if it had been saved. I hope that's only God having a little fun with me - again...)