The Art of Blending — When learning, playing and technology come successfully together
What happens when learning, playing and technology come successfully together? The result — Masters of Play x IPEVO, a collaboration between Finland based artist Arlene Tucker and IPEVO Inc. Masters of Play is a workshop designed and conducted personally by Arlene with the aim of integrating New Media with Performance and Drawing using technology. Arlene has long been an avid user of IPEVO products, as she loves the ease of use and the portability. And with much honor, IPEVO invited Arlene to Taiwan this summer, bringing with her the much anticipated Masters of Play workshop, which was held over 5 days with 16 participants aged 7 or below.
This is not the first collaboration between IPEVO and Arlene, the first being Dear You international art exchange program, which revolved around classroom-to-classroom artwork sharing and cultural exchanges between countries using IPEVO technology. And this time round, Arlene seeks to further enrich her Masters of Play workshop and entice her young participants by incorporating the positive use of IPEVO technology. So let’s take a look at how Arlene did it!
A new drawing medium — IPEVO IW2 Wireless Interactive Whiteboard System
Drawing is a big part of this workshop — drawing is fun, and drawing helps bring out the inner artists of the young participants and allows them to freely express their thoughts.
Besides encouraging and letting the participants to draw using conventional mediums such as paintbrush, crayons, color pencils, watercolors or ink throughout the workshop, Arlene took the step further by introducing a new drawing medium to them — IPEVO IW2 Wireless Interactive Whiteboard System. The IW2 is a 3-piece device consisting a Sensor Cam, Interactive Pen and Wireless Receiver, and when used together with a PC or Mac and a projector, it could turn most any surface interactive, changing the surface into an interactive whiteboard instantly.
And setting IW2 up is easy, it only takes a couple of minutes. For detailed instructions on setting IW2 up, please refer to the following video tutorial https://vimeo.com/129763268.
For a start, Arlene would like the participants to familiarize themselves with the IW2. Hence, Arlene set up the IW2, pulled up the free IPEVO Annotator software, projected a world map onto the projection screen, do a quick introduction on Finland, and invited the participants to draw what they thought the flight route from Finland to Taiwan would be like using the Interactive Pen of IW2.
The young participants were really engaged, their responses were overwhelming, and they came up with all sorts of different, interesting flight routes. They even used the different colors available in the Annotator software to color code their respective flight routes. And in no time, all the participants had gotten the hang of using IW2.
Further down the line, Arlene projected pictures of the participants (taken throughout the workshop) onto the screen, and challenged them to think out of the box by turning their original pictures into something different through adding drawings onto the pictures using IW2. It was amazing to see how creative and imaginative these young kids were: some of them fancifully decorated their pictures with wings or feelers, turning themselves into butterflies or bees; some changed the colors of their skin and clothing to their likings, and some added hats and shades for a summer look. It was magical for the kids to see their appearances changed within simple touches, and they really enjoyed this newfound medium of drawing.
Turning iPads into interactive drawing canvas with IPEVO Whiteboard app
Although the IW2 was a big attraction, there was only one projection screen available for one participant to use it at a time. Hence, in order to ensure that all the participants had their fair chance with IW2, taking turns was necessary. This was when Arlene divided the participants into smaller groups of three or four, and handed out iPads to those groups who were not using the IW2.
Prior to handing out the iPads, Arlene had the same set of pictures (of the participants) transferred to the iPads. In addition, IPEVO Whiteboard app was also installed on the iPads. As the Whiteboard app is a free app for iPad and Android Tablet that allows users to draw, annotate and add text directly onto blank “whiteboards” or live images coming from sources such as a connected IPEVO document camera, iPad’s real-time camera image, or a Photo Library image, with this app installed, the participants could achieve the same magical drawing effects on the iPads as with the IW2.
And the results? The young participants were similarly enticed. This proved to be another innovative way for the participants to have a hands-on experience with interactive drawing using IPEVO technology.
Going beyond documents with iZiggi-HD wireless document camera
Just as Arlene opened the minds of the young participants with new drawing medium, it was also an eye-opener for us to see how Arlene stretched the use of IPEVO iZiggi-HD wireless document cam. iZigg-HD is a wireless doc cam designed to connect wirelessly to iPad, Android Tablet, PC or Mac, giving you the freedom to capture and present materials anywhere in the classroom, office, or out on a field trip.
With this “freedom” in mind, Arlene went beyond the usual way of using iZiggi-HD to capture documents or share participants’ artworks to capturing the real-time actions and reactions of the participants for an on-going activity. First, Arlene had a Macbook set up with the IW2, then she had an iZiggi-HD connected wirelessly to the same Macbook, and finally, she pointed the iZiggi-HD at the participants during one of the activities. There was a wave of excitement and anticipation as the kids looked amusingly at their own live images being projected onto the projection screen.
Instructions were then given for them to work together as a group to form different shapes while keeping their hands held together.
At the same time, iZiggi-HD was used to capture the whole process and to stream their live action onto the projection screen. And once they had successfully formed the required shape, Arlene started to draw on their projected live images using the IW2. They were immediately turned into raindrops, apples trees and much more. Excitement grew, and the kids added an extra element of interactivity by making faces and jumping about, creating “smiling” raindrops and “jumping” apples.
The kids also had their turn to draw, expressing their creativity by changing their fellow participants into something dramatically different. It was definitely one of the highlights of the workshop!
Throughout the 5 days of workshop, it was heartening for both Arlene and for us at IPEVO to see that learning, playing and technology can indeed integrate seamlessly and successfully, as long as we have the right blend of all three elements. And so we called this success — “The Art of Blending”.