Interactive lighting workshop

responsive light interfaces

Experience prototyping

Umeå Institute of Design

Year / Duration

2010 / 1 week

Teaming up with

Yangchen Zhang


This workshop is focused on learning methods and technologies to interface and create responsive light works using arduino as a platform.

This excercise was made during the 5th week of the experience prototyping course in the Umeå Institute of Design given by Daniel Hirschmann.

Row column scanning technique

This particular technique allows us to lit and control just specific LED's within a matrix.

The secret is to know how to wire the led's to the arduino board and get some basic understanding of the code we have to type down on the software.


Shift registers

We also explore the usage of shift register which are chips to control a series of led's. The shift registers we were using had a limit of 8 led's connected at the same.


Shift registers in parallel

We also used the PWM shift registers which allow us to connect up to 16 channels at the same time. It is also easy to connect them in parallel to get a larger matrix of led's.

DMX shield

The dmx shield can be mounted on the arduino board. It converts the aduino into a DMX broadcast device. We can connect up to 512 channels


Catch the light

Catch the light is a public interactive installation where the user(s) is meant to match the color and brightness of the figure seen on the display by stepping on the pads located on the floor.

See the demo in the video below.


This video is a documentation of the week when the workshop was given.

This video is both for me as a personal documentation and for you if you want to know more details about the process and progress during that week. Enjoy!