Final Documentation

Over the course of this practicum, my project has evolved several times. I started off with the idea of backlighting a canvas with a painting or picture of some sort on the other side. I was also interested in casting shadows/making silhouettes. I decided to combine these two ideas and create a canvas with cutouts that would cast silhouettes onto the canvases when the light is turned on.

My idea eventually evolved into creating a three dimensional object that would give a larger sense of landscape. However, for my final project, I wanted to create something that the viewer would interact with by moving around it. To do this, I made each side follow a different color scheme, and then chose a nature related image to create the silhouette for.

The images of the final product are below.

When the room is bring and the internal light is off:

When the room is dark and the internal light is on:

A view from the top showing the different colors that are emitted:

Polish and Present

I finished up my final project this week. I added another layer of tissue paper to the canvases to give them richer colors. I also designed and made the cut outs to put on the inside of the box. I decided to follow the nature theme and chose a theme that matched each color scheme. I played with using different colored papers and different types of papers to create different shades of shadows. Darker colors cast darker silhouettes on the canvases. I attached the four canvases.

I wanted to create a dark top that would not allow light through, so I used an opaque canvas and painted it to resemble the sky. I like the effect of being able to see it when the box is in a lit area. But when you put it in a dark space and use the interior light fixture, it cannot be seen, like a night sky.

For the interior light fixture, I tried using a single light bulb, but I did not like how the light distributed itself on the canvases. Instead, I purchased a Styrofoam cube and wrapped Christmas lights around it. This way I was able to orient and arrange the lights in a way that lit the canvases better. I am really happy with how the final product turned out.

Everything Working

This week I had to buy new materials to create a larger, final version of the model I created for last week. I bought four 8 by 10 canvases. I also wanted to have a brighter light source, so I bought more lights and a base to attach them to. I wanted to create four different color schemes on each separate canvas, and then have four different themes associated with each side. I want all of them to be nature inspired. This week I completed the tissue papering of the four canvases. For next week, I need to create the cutouts to put on the inside of the canvas and assemble the entire piece. I am still trying to decide what I want to put on the top of the prism.

Failure, Recalibration & Iteration

This week I ran into a couple obstacles. I got the bleeding tissue paper in the mail and was trying it out. I was disappointed to find that the colors were not sticking to the canvases as I had hoped. I tried doing it on paper but the paper got too wet from the water. Finally, I decided to wet the paper on the canvas and the colors bled together well. I really liked that effect compared to the original effects made with the regular tissue paper. When I got the look that I like, I tried mod podging the tissue paper down. Then I let it dry. I made cutouts of mountains and put them on the back side of the canvas. There were areas that the light was showing through, so I had to recut the mountains so they were larger images that would stretch to cover those slits of light. The images below show the final product I created for this week.

The first image shows the tissue paper when it was wet, before I mod podged the tissue paper down. The second one shows the cube put together. There are cut outs on all four sides of the cube. The sides have not been glued together because I’m not sure if I want to keep this configuration. In the final, the light will not show between the edges.


I was thinking of creating a painting of sorts on a canvas and then backlighting it. But then I thought it would be neat to create a cube-like object and have lights in the middle. I started playing around with tissue paper and was hoping to do tissue paper painting, to try using a new medium. Using a small canvas, I created a sunset collage. I was hoping that the colors from the tissue paper would bleed on the canvas, but I accidentally bought the wrong type of tissue paper. So for the sake of the maquette, I glued the papers down.  I cut a cactus out of construction paper and attached it to the backside of the canvas. I thought it would be neat to have an image on one side, and when the canvas is lit up, another image appears.

Going forward, I need to buy:

Bleeding tissue paper

Larger canvases

Paintbrush for water/glue

Exacto knife

Lights for the interior

I am planning to make a small version of the cube once I can get some more of these materials, and also am considering other ways to make an additional image appear when lighting up the cube. Also I need to figure out what the best type of lighting will be, whether I should use string lights or a light bulb style lighting. These things I can test once I have the cube built.

Concept Proposal

At this point, I have two ideas that I am considering.

The first idea is creating a skyline projection using shadows. I could arrange a variety of objects and cast a light on them to create a silhouette on a wall. Here are couple of the images that I was inspired by:

I was thinking of doing a recognizable landscape, or of a place that I traveled to recently. Here are some inspirations I had:


My second idea was to create a painting or multimedia piece that was backlit in order to add a new element of lighting to image. I was thinking it would be interesting to have is simulate a window, by creating a landscape or something in nature, or literally having a window pane to give the appearance of looking out of a window.  Here are a couple paintings that inspired me:

With this idea, I could play around with different materials, textures, lighting and visual ideas. I am leaning towards this idea as there are more things I could do with it.

Light Artists: Jen Lewin

Jen Lewin is an internationally renowned light and interactive sculptor. She works in New York City, and over the past 15 years has created works of art that have been featured at many events, solo exhibitions, and publications.

Jen Lewin focused on making pieces of art for the public use. She wants to create experiences that will bring vibrancy to neighborhoods, parks, and public spaces. Her art encourages viewers to engage with her work, allowing viewers to becomes artists themselves as they interact with her pieces.

Aqueous – An interactive landscape of meandering pathways of light

Inspired by the symmetry in natural systems and composed of hundreds of interactive, stand-alone, modular platforms derived from the Golden Ratio.

Controlled from raw code that can process human interaction on each of the independent yet connected platforms.

In the day, Aqueous shifts in color and reflection to mirror the sky within a dichroic surface.

At night, Aqueous flows and glows in full illuminated interactivity.

Aqueous at Burning Man 2017 from Jen Lewin Studio on Vimeo.

The Pool

POOL verb – combine, blend, join, forces, league, merge, put together, share

Lewin’s most famous piece is called The Pool. It consists of giant concentric circles made from interactive circular platforms. The collaborative movements create swirling effects of light and color. This piece contains over 40,000 LEDs and has traveled to over 40 major installations across the globe within the past 6 years. The Pool is inspired by pools, water, the moon, and the sun.

The Pool Around The World from Jen Lewin Studio on Vimeo.

This piece is a permanent, outdoor interactive instrument. Sidewalk Harp is located in Minneapolis, Minnesota at the By The Match Registry which is a nonprofit National Bone Marrow Donor Program.

 Sidewalk Harp plays by passing your body through the 36 sensors capped with LEDs along the bottom of the 40 foot long form.

Sidewalk Harp from Jen Lewin Studio on Vimeo.



Part of the Dairy Block Art Collection in Denver, Colorado. Networked platforms form a community within themselves. Promenade reflects the environment in shifting colors during the day and comes alive at night with full LED color interactivity.

Introduction and Art Portfolio

I have always enjoyed art. I took a couple art classes in high school: drawing and painting and digital photography. It was a nice escape from the rest of the busy school day. In my digital photography class, I was exposed to the electronic side of art that I continued to pursue at WPI by taking classes such as graphic design and 3D modeling. When I was younger, I went to a couple art camps where I had the opportunity to work with many different mediums of art doing things like pottery and a variety of painting styles.

I have minimal background in programming, although I have worked with Java in the past. I also took an ECE course.

I started ballet when I was little and continued throughout high school. I also used to play the clarinet in middle school and sang in the choir in high school.

I am really inspired by nature. The sky has always fascinated me. I love watching sunrises and sunsets and looking at the moon. My family and I have traveled to many national parks, and I think that those trips made me appreciate nature and all the things it is capable of creating. I love taking photographs of these places, just to attempt to capture the beauty and awe of the place.

Thinking about all the art related things I have done in my life, art has not been enough of a part of my life these past couple years. I hope to pick up more of it again because it really does make me happy. I miss the feeling of feeling so accomplished for making something out of nothing.

Below are some of the works that I have created at WPI. The first two are 3D modeled using mostly ZBrush. The third one is a comic strip I created based on the character I made in Maya. The last two images are a magazine layout I designed and include images that I took.