Friday, 26 August 2011

Firefly Adventure Club: More Photos

My neighbour, Ramin Eshraghi-Yazdi recently left a CD of photos at my apartment door.  He took some amazing photos from the Firefly Adventure Club, and we're really grateful that he shared these shots.  If you want to see them in their full glory, I recommend you click on the images to enlarge them.  It will be totally worth the 2 seconds. 

 Everyone was welcomed at the soldering station.  It is great that for a couple of Calgarians, the first time they ever soldered an electric circuit board was under the 4th Street bridge at Elbow Island Park one summer evening.

 Once the circuit boards where soldered together, folks could place them in mason jars with some foliage to create jars with captured fireflies.

 One of the great things (and not so great things) about night time LED projects is that they are generally pretty tricky to photograph.  In spite of that, this is one of the amazing photos of the installation under the bridge.  Using string and floral wire we mounted hanging LED lights in the area where an acoustic set would happen later that evening.  The floral wire worked really well for mounting the LEDs into the ground to give the appearance fireflies fluttering just above ground level.  Whenever wind would enter the tunnel, it looked like they were flying all over.  

 The LED station remained busy all night long.  Vlad drew really great instructions with sharpie on the cardboard we were using as 'work stations'.  

 People built multiple LED fireflies, had conversations and made new pals under that bridge.  Power to the people!  Special thanks to the folks from Protospace and Solarbotics for lending us generators, back-up AC power supplies and soldering irons!  

Click to see this image.  Elbow Island Park is a small island right off the south end of the Mission community.  The lights you see in the darkness are the LED fireflies (yellow and green) installed into the park.  You can almost see the Safeway sign from the other side of the Elbow river through the trees and bushes.

 During this experience, a lot of us talked about wanting to spend more time on the island in the future.  It's such a neat space, and it really just needed some friendly folks and a little bit more light to make it the most inviting and magical space.  

 People got super creative with the LED lights.  They put multiple LEDs on a lithium ion cell.  We even saw a couple of folks who synchronized their blinking LED lights to produce some really neat flashing patterns.

 More firefly clusters.

 There was one path that folks would travel down to add their LED firefly.  One of the visitors in attendance noted that every time you walked down the LED path it got a bit longer and longer, as other people added more LED fireflies to the path.  The last LED light along the path marked how far onto the island people were willing to go.  It was a really neat observation. 

 Folks got really involved with the general DIY mood of the evening.  Will Knoll, who is involved with Protospace, brought his prototype of the JeLEDfish; an electronic device raised into the air with helium balloons with really neat oscillating purplish lights.

 Here it is getting ready for launching.

The soldering station was constantly full!  You can see Ben Reed from Protospace at the left giving some tips for soldering.  Thanks Ben! 

 A lot of folks came on their bikes, and they attached some LED lights to themselves for safe rides home!  Stay safe night cyclists!
Someone holding their glowing jar of blinking LED lights.  Some folks took their jars home, others added them throughout the park and even along the river. 

 The LEDing continues.  

 The JeLEDfish takes flight!  It wasn't released into the atmosphere (don't worry green pals!).  It was anchored down, so it could be re-launched in the future.

Vlad and I were unable to take photos this evening, with all the running around and chatting we were doing.  But this is the image we were both hoping someone would take.  You can clearly see all the LED fireflies under the bridge in this shot, as folks peer into the space.  We encouraged people to go in there even before the acoustic set.  That way they could push around some of the hanging fireflies to create movement when there was no wind.   

 Vlad and some folks and a lone balloon under the bridge. 

Getting set up for the acoustic covers under the bridge.  This was another event during the Choose Yer Own Festival organized by Sean Stewart and Peter Hemminger.  

 Ben Reed from Protospace and Mark Martens from Solarbotics taking in the music after a night of soldering and LEDs.  

Enjoying the jams and some ambient lighting. 

This was such a find!  A couple of folks made LED light mobiles that they they added to the bridge tunnel.  In the dark it looked a bit like the outline of the Starship Enterprise.  So glad people really got into things! 

A memorable evening.

This is what the soldering station looked like right before we had to clean up.  We'll post some images of what collecting the LED lights looked like after.  Thanks to everyone who came.  Thanks for everyone who's shared photos with us.  And thanks for everyone who helped collect all the LED lights that evening. 

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