About two weeks ago, I had a vision. A vision brought down upon me by entities from another dimension. They showed me a chaotic revelation of a war between humanoid interdimensional Rhinoceros Beetles who hate humans, and humans. The beetles looked something like this…
It seems that in their dimension they were able to became the dominant species. Their hatred of humans stems from a late night tv infomercial for a bugspray that somehow entered into their dimension via radiowaves. The beetles saw this transmission, and were horrified, they took this as a threat towards their species and decided to invade our dimension and take over. I have now for this project decided to recreate this vision I have been given in order to warn mankind of the dangers that lie ahead.
How do these vile creatures of hatred work? In their nose they contain two glands of light that begin to glow based on how much pressure they exert with their teeth. As their loathing for us increases and they bite down on us even harder, these little glands begin to blink faster and faster. Once they have reached an ultimate anger point, they give a fatal bite that releases toxic venom and kills us instantly. At this point their antennas glow a bright red that reflects their own internal hatred for us. It is demonstrated in this video.
I decided to recreate this vision by carving into blue foam to create a nose similar to that of a regular Rhinoceros Beetle. I made sure to measure my nose so that I could fit it on. I then painted it green with acrylic paint, and then covered it in latex completely.
I created two little horns out of the blue foam as well, and repeated the process I did for the horn.
For my coding I began thinking of how I would do the blinking. I started out trying to experiment with one LED to see how it would work if I added blink after an FSR reading. At first I had a hard time getting it to work, but then I realized that the pins themselves worked as power outage, and would not work if I connected them to the 3v outage pin that my FSR sensor was connected to. After disconnecting the LED from the power source pin, it began to blink as planned.
I then wanted to add a second LED in order to have one on each end of the horn. I added a second set of
directly under the first one and renamed it LEDpin2. But the problem with this was that both LEDs would not light up at the same time, no matter if I re arranged anything, or changed the delays. Then I remembered a toy I had taken apart from dollarama that lit up the way I wanted it to, so I checked the way the LEDs were set in parallel to each other, so I copied it. But they were very dim, so I decided to get rid of the resistor, as it wasn’t letting enough energy come through.
I now had both blinking at the same time. I then added different speeds to different readings from FSR. And decided to add another set in red. This set would be attached to the horns. And I did the same things for it that I did for the green LEDs. After Setting up both sets of LEDs to the FSR and having them working to my liking. I began to put together my circuit. But first here is a video of the process in action as I tested the code to make sure it was working while I listened to some Chilean 80s power ballads in the background.
I soldered the green LEDs to green wire so they wouldn’t be as visible. And then covered everything in latex once again when attached to my horn in order for it to look more natural in conjunction to the horn. I did the same thing for my red LEDs except I also added a optic cable as antennas to the LEDs and used shrink tubing to hold it together. I covered all of this in latex once again.
I put the pressure sensor inside a plastic hand. The hand hang from the hat I added that the beetles wear (they wear human body parts as accessories). I sewed the hand closed but attempted to give it a sort of surgical stitch effect by making obvious big stitches across it. I also twirled together the 3 wires coming from the sensor so that it would be neater.
I attached my Bluefruit to the hat by sewing it on as seen here. The Battery pack was glued onto the top part. The hand hangs from another wire looped onto a hole in the hat.
For the horns I added additional paint, and some latex in order to make the wires look a little more natural on them.
After this I decided to finally add the rest of my wiring, connecting all the horns. I also added bits of hair as if to camouflage the Feather 32u4, battery pack, and some of the wiring.
Then with some spirit gum I attached all the wiring to my face. I finished it off with some very light and casual makeup for a subtle effect, and VOILA! I have become a humanoid interdimensional Rhinoceros Beetle who loathes humans.
Electronics Parts List:
Force Sensitive Resistor Sensor x1 – Creaton
Feather 32u4 x1
10 mm LED Green x 2
10 mm LED Red x 2
Fiber Optic light tube
9v battery holder box
10k ohm resistor
Heat Shrink Tubing
-All electronic parts obtained at Creatron
Lessons Learned/ Next Steps
I feel that the eventual invasion of the humanoid interdimensional rhinoceros beetles who loathe humans is key information for all of mankind. So, to improve on this prototype I think I would like to find new ways to deal with the wiring, as it proved a bit cumbersome to mask. I’m thinking of perhaps covering all the wiring in latex as well, or trying to be very minimal about the connections. I was also not satisfied with the use of biting the hand in order to activate the effect, while it went with my theme, I feel that it could’ve been executed differently. There is something that feels disjointed about it, but it may just be the fact that the hand is obviously a halloween prop. I feel this was a successful prototype, I enjoyed working with the pressure sensor. I think I would like to further explore what other things I could do with it, and hopefully build onto this idea in order to integrate an even more interesting wearable and performance relationship.