Stick Man - Mad Mapper

Stick MaN

A projection piece, Stick Man shows a character on a seemingly endless quest, never able to get to the point he is heading. He keeps walking and walking and seems to find himself back in that same spot again.


Original Story Path

Original Story Path

I worked on this project with my partner Mingna. Our first ideas spoke about using a video of a character walking around the confines of the projection. This turned into thinking of the character being on a sort of loop. We created an intricate story for the character, going through inside a castle and falling into moat where they are eaten by a crocodile, sent to a purgatory like place where they open a door restarting the loop. We realized that aspects of Mad Mapper kept us from creating this as it works on a loop, not a timeline, and  we would need sequencing to make that happen.  

From there we looked at creating a projection that was layered in 3D-space. Looking at different MC Escher pieces, we played with different ways of layering in the physical space to project different layers on to. Our first attempt at the projection onto layers was a flat wall that we layered strips of tape on top of. Throughout this I was teaching myself how to animate a stick figure in After Effects, my first time animating anything on a computer. Started with different sizes of our stick figure walking across the strips of tape, the shadows of the tape, and the wall itself on an endless loop, each on their own respective layers. We built a frame out of PVC piping to put the tape on top of, but once we installed that we both felt that it wasn’t exactly what we wanted. 

Mockup of Corner Tape Placement

Mockup of Corner Tape Placement

The next day we decided to project onto a corner of our classroom that had a wall in that corner, cutting it into a 45 degree angle. As soon as we saw it projected in that corner, we knew it was the right was to project that version of the piece. From there we started designing  shapes inside of the projection and making more animations. 


Once getting to the corner of the room, I feel in love with the project. At first I wasn’t in love with the tape concept, but I think it being on top of the flat wall was the issue. Once it was in that setting, and with the shapes and colors that Mingna chose, I couldn’t get over the piece. I was excited to make more and more animations to put in it.