KINECT For Artists: Motion – Sensing

This workshop explores the possibilities of depth sensors in artistic contexts, focussing on Microsoft’s Kinect devices. How can a gaming device become a new creative tool? What are the possibilities for artists-developers? What is the technology? What are the limitations?

This masterclass has a modular setup. You can choose to participate only one day or go for the full 2-day package.

The first day, we will get to know the technical foundations and limitations of these sensors, review existing artworks that successfully used the Kinect and explore available tools. We’ll see how the Kinect plugs into popular frameworks and programs such as MaxMSP, Unity, processing or openFrameworks. At the end of the day participants will be able to brainstorm project ideas for projects such as installations, dance and theatre and discuss them with the instructor.
The second day we’ll walk through some more advanced projects and examples in a hands-on programming session in Processing or openFrameworks. Topics include point clouds, projector calibration and facetracking.

• Day 1:  Introduction
▪ Introduction to 3D Cameras
▪ Kinect capabilities – examples of video, depth, infrared, point clouds, skeleton tracking, face recognition, speech recognition
▪ Examples of works made with Kinect
▪ Overview of different versions (V1, V2) and other depth cams
* Don’t re-invent the wheel! Overview of existing Kinect tools such as Kinect Studio (MS), Brekel tools, Z-Vector, …
* Create your own projects in Max MSP, Processing, OpenFrameworks and Unity
* Project Ideas – evaluating potential Kinect based project concepts

Day 2: Hands-on session with the Kinect and walkthrough examples, such as:
* Kinect Motion Tracking – locating objects in space
* Kinect Point Clouds – the stuff Kinect data is made of
* Kinect and the Body – driving projections through body movements
* Kinect-Projector Calibration – how to align a Kinect with a video projector
* Kinect and the Face – face tracking, smile detection and other features
* Kinect Avateering – Controlling 3D models with movement

This course is for:

Beginner (= explorer) – Intermediate (= developers)
The course is intended for beginners with interest in sensors and movement-reactive installations. Basic programming experience in Processing or openFrameworks is recommended for the second day, although the concepts can be applied in other frameworks.

Material required:
To guarantee driver compatibility, a laptop with Windows installed is needed (or Mac with Bootcamp + windows 8 or newer (trial is ok)).
• A Kinect (V1 or V2) device if possible; some Kinects will be available for participants.

Artistic guidance:
Bart Moens (Who’s this?)

Course dates:
This course will not be organized this season. However, it is available on demand. Please send an e-mail to for more information.