Yesterday the team spent the afternoon just… playing around with lots of bright lights and various materials to make shadows, reflections, and refractions. It was free-form playful experimentation without a particular goal in mind, and it felt refreshing and energizing, a good reminder of how important it is to make time for “just play.” Here are some observations from it, in no particular order.
The overlapping caustics (sharp light lines) in the center of the magnifying glass are amazing, but it is the perfectly graduated shades of gray in the left of the image that caught my eye.
I love this simple Mylar light box encased in a circular frame with a wooden handle. It looks like a magnifying glass but for noticing the chaotic ballet of caustics and colors created by multiple reflections.
RGB lights in a circle create a very interesting and smooth gradient that reveals pinks, purples, teals, etc. And light escaping from the cracks between the blocks reverts back to RGB rays.
Simple explorations, like two lights and a pegboard, can become very interesting with a simple shift in perspective.
Speaking of pegboard, it can serve as a projection surface that also lets light through, creating interesting “pixellated” versions of the projections in the background.
Plus-shaped holes + (pun intended) multiple light sources = incredible complex patterns.
Slinkies make for incredible light exploration devices!
Water on a clear plastic plate creates incredibly sharp rippling patterns on the ceiling.
Delicious multicolored light Pringles spring into existence while playing with a magnifying glass.
1, 2, or 3 while lights with a rainbow of colored water reveals vibrant shades, overlaps, caustics, and color gradations galore!
All this and more was revealed in just 90 minutes or so. A self-reminder that time invested in free exploration produces incredible returns!