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Blog . Tips For Video Installations

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Tips For Video Installations

04/10/14  |  Posted by Leah Yochman  |  Posted in Digital Creativity

Video Installations are one of my favorite things to watch and to create myself. I have learned the ups and downs of installing them, so here are some of my tips and tricks to think about before you start. Some of these things may seem like common sense, but they are things most people (including myself) might overlook or just assume will be available, when that is not always the case.

Get Thinking

First, decide if you want to make something that will be projected on a wall, an object, through an object, a corner, or multiple walls. Those aren’t the only options, those are just the ones I have experience with. Do you want a bunch of people to view it at once or do you want only a few people to view it at a time? This is important when deciding on your space. Next, decide if you will need one video or multiple, if you need multiple videos you also need multiple projectors. Make sure you would be able to have access to the amount of projectors you need before you start. Once you have thought and figured those things out it's time to start thinking about the place this will be at. Whether it’s going to be in a room designed for videos, a classroom, hallway, or some place where videos aren’t typical played at. It's important to go to the place you want to install and see how many outlets there are. If the lighting will be right for viewing your video, is there enough space to have the projector far enough away from the surface you need it to be? Will there be enough space for the amount of people you want to view it at a time?

Setting Up

When it comes to viewing your installation, make sure that the place you pick has enough space for the projector to not be in anyone’s way and that no one will be walking through the projection, unless that’s what you're going for. Extension cords are always something you should make sure you can get, in case an outlet is too far away from where you need it. Projector height is also something to think about. You may need to buy or build something to set your projector on to adjust the height and angle so it is projecting exactly where you want it to be. If you want to have multiple videos, which means multiple projectors, you need to do the same thing you would do for only one projector. I cannot stress enough, relying on the projector feet is not always the best option when you need a specific angle/height. It will save you so much time when it comes to more difficult projections.

Projecting Through/On Objects

If you want to project through an object/sculpture to distort the edges of your video and activate the space, there are a lot of options that can be really fun. Clear plastic is a material that will distort the video on the walls, along with the video playing on the surface of the plastic. Projecting through a plexiglass box (rectangular), in a four-walled room, at an angle will project your video onto all four walls. One wall will be a clear image that will get smaller and less clear on the other walls. Projecting through a shower curtain does similar things as the box mentioned above, but gives the wall projection an underwater feel. Those aren’t the only options, just the ones I am most familiar with. Projecting on a curtain in a corner of a room is something that I truly enjoy doing. I put objects and furniture behind the curtain to distort my video while having it viewed in the traditional rectangle size. Curtains and cloth are great things to project video on if you want to go for a textured feel or have your video distorted with a pattern. Have fun and I wish you the best of luck!

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