I hadn’t quite figured out what I could do with a chandelier, but as I’ve decided early on this semester, I wanted to integrate my own culture into as many projects as possible. And as long as it made sense.
As I headed down to Canal Plastics to pick up some acrylic for the project (I had thought of lasercutting them, although in what shapes I didn’t know), I stopped by the quintessential Chinese market in Soho: the Pearl River. In there (they don’t allow photos, unfortunately), I saw a variety of colorful Chinese lanterns and I knew right then I wanted to use them. I just needed to make them look like a chandelier, which, coincidentally, isn’t too far of a stretch since Chinese lanterns are hung in multitudes during the Chinese Lantern Festival, which marks the end of the Lunar New Year:
Chinese lanterns symbolize togetherness, well-being, and good fortune, having been part of the Chinese tradition for at least two thousand years.
Since lantern were originally used as portable lights (they helped blocked candles from the wind, making them basically an ancient form of flashlights), I wanted the LEDs to mimic the flickering motions of the candle flame. To do that, I plan on modifying the “Blink” code along with the “Button” code to control it: