Friday, January 10, 2014

Software controlled DMX portrait lighting with Kinect based automatic positioning, 12 Nikon camera satellite

The goal: to create a portable lighting system able to capture diffuse, specular, and normal texture maps with even shadowless lighting, and capture a 3D model of the actor or subject at the same time, with or without augmented structured light from a satellite of five projectors. Add in enough software control of lighting to create a mesoscopic normal map.

I spec'ed and designed the rig, and wrote the software that drives the cameras, projectors, and lighting, as well as an automated Kinect-based trigger that detects the moment when the subject is in position and holding still.

A mastery of the Nikon SDK was required to control the cameras, but USB timing limitations required a separate microcontroller-based hardware trigger to half/full press with precise timing.

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