Experiment 4 – Snow Day

Brian Nguyen – 3160984

Andrew Ng-Lun – 3164714

Michael Shefer – 3155884

Rosh Leynes – 3164714

Snow Day



Experiment 4 has gone through many developments and alterations when compared to our initial stage of the assignment. Essentially, our inspiration came from the concept of how movements could manipulate an environment. With the use of matter.js, ml5js, and the Posenet library, we set out to create an interactive installation that tracks an individual’s body movement and builds it into a skeleton that is capable of interacting with the environment within P5. The environment is set to mimic a snow day where particles gradually drop to the bottom of the canvas and the individual is able to interact with their physics capabilities through movement of the arms. The purpose is to provide an experience of playing in the snow via P5. Additionally, the installation promotes interactivity with others as it is capable of registering more than one individual onto the canvas and allowing all participants to interact with the environment.


Related Work

The inspiration for our concept stemmed from an article  that introduced us to Posenet and it’s capabilities described it more in depth. With it’s basic understanding and implementation into P5 we then continued to explore and develop the idea of physical body interactivity by looking at inspiration of particle systems in codepen before looking into other various libraries. Additionally, some of our group members have previously worked with the webcam and its capability to manipulate particles in P5 via a webcam feed, this previous knowledge allowed us to jump start our concept development.

Background Related Work



Goals for the Project


Our first goal was to implement Posenet into P5 to register a body with a background particle system on the canvas. This was achieved as pictured above. The basic points of the head, shoulders, and limbs was able to be registered and constructed in to a skeleton, furthermore it managed to capture more than one person. From there we continued to refine the presentation of the project by altering the particles, canvas, and skeleton.


With Posenet and our particle system working well in P5 our next goal was to actually implement the interactivity. While this goal was achieved come presentation day, we did encounter difficulty when attempting to implement it. With the body movement tracked and represented as a skeleton onto P5, we added squares to the points of the hands that would follow the movement of the arms and eventually interact with the falling snow via physics upon touching it. The boxes weren’t always responsive especially when they had to follow the movement of multiple people. Additionally, we experimented with what shape would be able to manipulate the snow better and ultimately settled on squares.

Our final goal came from an issue that we encountered during critique day. In order to register the subject effectively, the body had to be well lit. We managed to achieve this by installing light stands to illuminate the subject. We experimented with different ways of eliminating shadows, and angles in which the light dropped onto the subject. At the end we used two light LED studio lights installed alongside the webcam to a white backdrop in order to capture the subject movement effectively.


Code with References and Comments


Working Demo


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