Now, what have we here?
The weird contraption you see in the picture above is a so called “Tagtool”. It is used for live-performances where (usually) two people work together, one who draws and one who animates the drawing when it is done. The set up is fairly simple: the person who draws uses a drawing tablet and a set of slide controls that regulate line thickness, transparency, etc… When he thinks the drawing is ready he hits the big button and the animator can now use the gamepad to play with the drawing, move it around, make it change size, etc… All the while the results are being projected with a beamer. This can be used inside of a theatre but also on the street or at a party as a VJ-tool.
This video will show you what it’s all about. It is made by 4 students of the Informations Design Course of FH Joanneum University of applied sciences in Graz. It is in German, but with what you already know, I’m sure you will understand what’s going on…
The best thing is it’s all Open Source stuff! The people behind it are OMA International (Office for Media and Arts), they are from Vienna, Austria and they strongly believe all knowledge gained by this project should be shared freely. You can visit the Tagtool-site and there you can download all the software you need, find all of the information to build your own tagtool and tons of tips and tricks to get to work with it. The site also has a whole lot of video’s, so you can see what other people are doing with the gear.