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Adafruit’s Phillip Burgess posted this fantastic tutorial to their Learning System on how to use Raspberry Pi to paint with light. We’ve covered this technique before and it involves setting a long exposure on the camera and using moving light sources to “paint” within the frame. When you involve computer- or microcontroller-controlled LED strips in the process, you can get some astounding results. This project relies on a Raspberry Pi loaded up with Adafruit’s own distro, Occidentalis, which includes the necessary hardware SPI support for the LED strips.


Simply porting this project to Raspberry Pi wasn’t enough for Phillip, so he put another spin on it. Instead of a straight LED strip, he attached it around the circumference of a hula hoop and braced it with PVC pipe. He attached the rig to his trike and now he can ride the streets, painting with light:

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson is a Brooklyn-based creative technologist, Contributing Editor at MAKE, and Resident Research Fellow at New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP). He’s the co-author of Getting Started with Raspberry Pi and the author of Getting Started with BeagleBone.


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Comments

  1. HANKIENSTIEN says:

    Can some one post video or a link, id like to see this in real time, because those effects could be put on with photo shop, not that i doubt the lagitimacy of the photos or anything, i just am curious how it looks in real time! its an amazing achivement, keep on it!
    HANKIENSTIEN

  2. [...] Light Painting with Raspberry Pi Adafruit’s Phillip Burgess posted this fantastic tutorial to their Learning System on how to use Raspberry Pi to paint with light. In addition to the Pi, the project uses an RGB LED strip, a recumbent bike, and camera set to capture long exposures. [...]