Handmade "unfolded" pano of the Pecos Mission Ruins. photo by ARTS Lab

In July, ARTS Lab and IAIA got together with Greg Downing and Eric Hanson of xRez.

Day 1, we went over Panoramic shooting using Nodal Ninja, Gigapixel shooting using robotic rigs such as the Gigapan Pro, HDR Lighting Capture, Shooting for Photogramatry and Use of Motion-Control Time Lapse rings.

Day 2, we looked at various software including Adobe Bridge, PT GUI, Autopano, PhotoFly, Bundler, and Meshlab.

Day 3, we looked at integrating various works into Maya and manipulating Maya for the dome. xRez gave a great demonstration of how the created their fulldome production, Crossing Worlds..

Below are links that xRez provided to fortify the workshop:
Maya, Mental Ray, PTgui, Nuke, Photoshop,
Bridge 3DEM (free, Windows)
MacDEM (free, OSX)
HDRshop (free, Windows)
PullSTDS (free, Windows)
Global Mapper, ($350, Windows)

DEM Source:
http://www.cherba.com/3D/dem_sources.htm http://vterrain.org/Elevation/SRTM/

Topo Source:

Earth Imagery:
http://www.unearthedoutdoors.net/global_data/true_marble/ http://www.truearth.com/


We will continue to add information about this experience and share as we build our own knowledge on the techniques we are learning.

To view images from the workshop, please see ARTS Lab’s Flickr page.

Digital Dome @ IAIA recently launched our own webpages as part of the Institute of American Indian Arts website. Here you will find more information about the dome, view a listing of courses and workshops, link to all of our social media sites, and you can request a demonstration for when you are in the Santa Fe area.

We will be expanding the webpages to include artist in residency applications, collaboration proposal applications, and more. Check it out!

We are preparing for the much anticipated three day fulldome production workshop with xRez. xRez are the creators of the spectacular dome show, Crossing Worlds
This workshop is a collaborative effort between xRez, IAIA, and UNM ARTSLab.

Using high resolution panoramic imagery integrated into 3D software allowed them to take advantage of it’s powerful flexibility while presenting real-world imagery. They developed a method utilizing a stitched panoramic HD capture, where they can far exceed even the highest resolution of emerging digital cinema solutions. Their first dome film format film, “Crossing Worlds” won a coveted “Domie” for Best Design in a Dome at DomeFest 09 in Albuquerque, NM and was later shown in the world’s highest resolution dome theater at Dome Day Asia. A visual tone poem designed for the emerging fulldome planetarium format, “Crossing Worlds” utilizes spherical photography from the American desert west to immerse the viewer in a transcendent spectrum of austere landscapes.

This hands-on workshop will cover basic approaches to capture and integration of real- world locations and CGI elements for fulldome production. The initial focus will be on photographic techniques, such as spherical panoramic background photography, HDRI capture, and photogrammetry for set reconstruction. Site survey techniques will be demonstrated as well as a brand new technique for 3d point cloud data capture based on Microsoft Photosynth software. Later classroom study will include formatting the content shot and integrating in Autodesk Maya for fulldome production.

We will have 2 components to the workshop, first a one-day field session to capture a nearby location (Pecos National Monument) covering spherical panoramic shooting, HDRI capture, gigapixel capture, and shooting for photogrammetry. The participants will perform most of the techniques illustrated w/ shooting rigs. The second phase will be a 2-day classroom session that will consist of software demonstrations in Photoshop, PTGui, Autopano, HDRShop, Maya, and Nuke to illustrate post-production workflow methodology. Integration of CGI elements within an image-based panoramic digital set will be the goal, and several completed works will be shown.

In preparation for this workshop to include purchasing new equipment to create four dome production kits and working on our shooting skills. Our kits include: Gigipan Epic Pro, Canon 600D, Canon EF 70-200mm F2.8 IS lens, Sunex SuperFisheye lens, and supportive gear.

Digital Dome @ IAIA fulldome kit

We will use these new skills to teach students at the Institute of American Indian Arts digital dome production courses. More to come on this workshop.

We are in the process of getting a Dome Advisory Council put together in order to implement a mandate, policy and procedures for the Digital Dome at IAIA.
Currently on our council is Ethan Bach- Director of the Digital Dome, Anne Filemyr- Academic Dean of IAIA, Ryan Rice – Chief Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts,
Laurie Logan Brayshaw – Director of Sponsored Programs and Institutional Research, and Leena Minifie – New Media Arts Student, IAIA. We are coming together bi-weekly to organize
and discuss the future of the dome, how we can engage community involvement, organizations and artists both inside and outside the institution. We are trying to answer the big questions-
such as: what will are artist-in-residency program look like, what our IAIA’s goals for curriculum for the Dome and what are the requirements to scheduling dome demonstrations for the public?
Our next meeting is July 14th, 2011.

Digital Dome @ IAIA has recently had the pleasure of meeting Klaus Dufke who is teaching Motion Graphics at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam in the Design Department. Our Dome Director, Ethan Bach, discovered this program through the call for work for the Currents @ the Digital Dome 2011 show, which took place on June 11. Two students projects were submitted from the University of Applied Sciences (UAS) and both projects were accepted into the show. Impressed by the work, Ethan contacted the professor, Klaus Dufke, who was more than willing to share his information. Turns out that UAS not only turns out interesting student work, but they have created a virtual dome testing software rightly named, DomeTester.

The DomeTester is a previsualization tool that takes flat images and places them on a three dimensional dome object that can navigate various perspectives of the virtual dome. This tool is amazing and will be a great help in creating work, teaching about the dome, and working with artists who do not have direct access to a dome. Before even looking at the software, Ethan was warned to “handle with care” as the DomeTester is still in development and has a hard time handling the computer memory.

This tool is easy to use, extremely helpful and accurate, and will become a staple in teaching courses here at the Digital Dome @ IAIA. As we were warned, the application is a bit RAM intensive. Our computer’s fan ran high while the software was running. I would recommend using this software for short intervals until the processing issue is handled. This should by no means keep anyone from using this tool to its full extent.

DomeTester is a freeware for Mac, Windows, and Linux. More information on DomeTester can be found on this translated link.

Domefest is back this year and Digital Dome @ IAIA will be an active part. We are happy to announce that we have been working with David Beining at ARTS Lab UNM to come up with comprehensive programming for the Digital Dome @ IAIA. As it stands now, Digital Dome @ IAIA will a host a simulcast of the Domefest juried shows here in Santa Fe while they also play at the LodeStar planetarium in Albuquerque. We will also give a presentation at the LodeStar planetarium on the use of culture and art in the fulldome and host software and hardware demonstrations at our unique fully articulating dome.
Domefest will take place October 14 – 16, 2011 in Albuquerque and Santa Fe, New Mexico
We will be sure to post more information as if becomes available.

Attendees watching Digital Dome Works

We thank all the participants  and attendees for our Event at Currents 2011.Overall it was a major success with over 100 people in attendance for the 3 hour event.

This is the first time that IAIA Digital Dome has hosted a public new media event displaying international and national artists. With it’s success at our backs we are already in the the planning stages for more public events where people from all over the world can submit their works. We will be posting these calls for work and artist in residence as they develop. 

Our Digital Dome at the Institute of American Indian Arts offers a variety of innovative space ideal for research, video production, full-dome production, special events, fund-raising events, and events that support our mission of combining science, art, and technology.

List of Artists That Particpated Below:

Ethan Bach, Charles Veasey (USA) www.ethanbach.com www.charlesveasey.com
David Colagiovanni (USA) www.colagiovanni.net
Bonnie Lane (Australia) www.bonnielane.net
Jonathan Strawn, Allison Hagerman (USA)http://finearts.unm.edu/artslab.htm
University of Applied Sciences – Potsdam http://design.fh-potsdam.de/
Daniel Wiek, Moritz Degan (Germany)
Lea Weber-Schafer, Julia Weisner (Germany)
UNM Students http://finearts.unm.edu/artslab.htm
DataMiner, Mitchell Marti (USA)
Mind Glitch, Ruben Olguin (USA)
IAIA Students – www.iaia.edu
Sydney Davis (USA)
Bryan Akipa (USA)
Louva Hartwell  (Navajo)
Ethan Bach
Jamelyn Ebelecker (Santa Clara)
Daniel Grignon (Menominee Nation)
Aaron Natewa (Zuni)
Orlando Leibovitz, Andrew Elijah Edwards, and James Brody (USA) www.orlandoleibovitz.com
Javier Felipe Gonzales Echeverri (Columbia)
Florian-Ayala Fauna (USA)
Leena Minifie (Canada) IAIA Student (Tsimshian, Gitxaala) http://www.storiesfirst.ca/

We are getting geared up to show some terrific dome work next Saturday, June 11 from 1pm to 4pm at the Digital Dome @ IAIA as part of the Currents 2011: New Media Arts Festival. Our two student interns are doing a terrific job of making dome masters – thanks Leena Minifie and Seph Turniseed.

Several local and international artists will be showing work. Check out the list of work to be shown in the press release below.

No.217 by Lea Weber-Schafer and Julia Wiesner

Currents 2011: Digital Dome @ IAIA

Santa Fe, New Mexico – June 1, 2011 – Currents 2011 and Digital Dome @ IAIA presents video art from around the world including Australia, Germany, Columbia and the United States at the Digital Dome. Become part of the immersive environment of this one-of-a-kind digital dome through this dynamic space of multidimensional imaging and sound.

The Digital Dome @ IAIA will be inaugurated as a fine art space for the larger Santa Fe community with Currents 2011. As Currents moves into its second year, many more venues are available in Santa Fe. The Digital Dome @ IAIA opened in November 2010 where hundreds of people turned out to witness the unveiling of this unique fulldome theater. The digital dome is the only dome in the world that is fully articulating – it can move up or down and can rotate from 0° to 90°.

Currents 2011: Digital Dome @ IAIA will not only showcase work on the dome, but will also showcase single channel video and interactive design in the lobby.

Artist work includes James Brody, Orlando Leibovitz, and Andrew Elijah Edward’s Big Bang, Ethan Bach and Charles Veasey’s Collaborate, David Colagiovanni’s Charting Course for the Unknown, Bonnie Lane’s An Ordinary Grind, Daniel Weik and Moritz Degen’s 3910, Lea Weber-Schafer and Julia Wiesner’s No.217, Jonathan Strawn and Allison Hagerman’s Cathedral, Javier Felipe’s GrandPaw’s Song, Florian-Ayala Fauna’s Falling into a Dream, Mitchell Marti’s DataMiner, Ruben Olguin’s Mind Glitch, Louva Hartwell’s Mandala, Sydney Davis’ xyz, Leena Minifie’s Interconnectivity, and Bryan Akipa’s Ta-Hok-Mu.

Charting Course for the Unknown by David Colagiovanni

This event will take place on Saturday June 11, 2011 from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. The Digital Dome @ IAIA is located just past the Santa Fe Community College at the Science and Technology building at the Institute of American Indian Arts at 83 Avan Nu Po Road. From SFCC, turn right onto Avenida Del Sur. At the three-way stop, turn left onto Avan Nu Po Road. Take your third left into the IAIA campus. The Science and Technology building is straight ahead.

Please visit our online presence on Facebook www.facebook.com/DigitalDomeIAIA or our blog www.DigitalDomeIAIA.wordpress.com.

Contact: Kirsten Jasna,  505-424-2309, kjasna@iaia.edu or Ethan Bach, 505-424-2349, ebach@iaia.edu for more information.

This fall, Ethan Bach will teach Digital Dome Production I  at the Digital Dome at IAIA.

Course Description:
Get in on the cutting-edge of this new technology while learning how to use the DigitalSky software, create panorama and fisheye images, and learn the history, present, and future of the digital dome. This course requires a willingness to experiment, research, take risk and break new ground. From the basics of how to place a still image on the dome to exploring and experimenting with storytelling, installation, and art. Students can work with the dome in various positions utilizing its unique ability to articulate. A public showing of work is required as part of the final project.

The 1 credit colloquial that ran this spring semester was a tremendous hit. Over 15 students took the course and walked away with basic concepts in dome production.This fall, Bach will revisit and build on these concepts in a full 3 credit course in digital dome production. The preliminary course outline can be found below. Non-degree seeking students can sign up for the course beginning on May 16. Instructor permission is required, so make sure to send email to ebach@iaia.edu prior to attempting to register or if you have questions.

For information on how to register visit http://www.iaia.edu/ or call 505-424-2300.

The course information is as follows:
NMAD351 Digital Dome Production I   Tuesdays/Thursdays  9:30am – 12pm.
Fall 2011 runs August 22 – December 9.

There is still plenty of room, as many IAIA students wait until after pre-reg to register. Please feel free to invite friends and colleges to this course.

Course Outline
Week 1

Review Syllabus and Introductions
History of Immersive Art
History of the Geodesic Dome
Future of the Digital Dome
View existing dome content

Week 2
DigitalSky Software – placement and previsualization
Students bring in existing work to place on the dome
Placing Images on the dome
File Formats and Resolution
Midterm project assigned

Week 3
Project 1: 360° Panorama
History of panoramic photography
Stitching the pano

Week 4
View student panos
Students pitch midterm projects
Making masks for dome projects

Week 5
Project 2: Fisheye
Fisheye Photography and Video
Fisheye lenses and digital fisheye effects

Week 6
View student fisheye
Experiments in the Digital Dome
Artist Lecture

Week 7
How to run a dome show
preview midterm projects and critique

Week 8
Midterm presentations

Week 9
Project 3: Surround Sound: Surround Sound recording and editing
Final project assigned
How to use the Digital Dome as installation
Artist Lecture

Week 10
Listen to student surround sound projects
Project 4: Video on the dome: issues and work arounds
Students pitch Final Project

Week 11
View student videos
Planning the end of semester show
Color Correction and Contrast: FCP Color and Photoshop

Week 12
Work on final projects
Making the fulldome Master

Week 13
preview final projects and critique

Week 14
Work on final projects

Week 15

K. Bibliography of Course Development:

Fulldome Blog by Hugh Walker. http://huew.wordpress.com/tag/fulldome/

What the Hell is Fulldome (video) by domefest. http://vimeo.com/2439886

Introduction to the Fulldome Master (video) by Chabot Space and Science Center


Hue’s Beginner’s Guide to Fulldome Production

by Hue Walker http://artslab.unm.edu/tutorials/dome1a.htm

How to Create for the Digital Dome by Ethan Bach

Other required readings will be provided by the instructor.

L. Adequacy of Library Holdings in This Area

-Rethinking Curating: Art after New Media by Beryl Graham and Sarah Cook

– What Sound Does A Color Make? by Kathleen Forde

-360 Degree Imaging: The Photographers Panoramic Virtual Reality Manual by Phillip Andrews

– Shivers Down Your Spine: Cinema, Museums, and the Immersive View (Film and Culture Series) by Alision Griffiths

– Virtual Art: From Illusion to Immersion by Oliver Grau

– Future Cinema: The Cinematic Imaginary After Film by Jeffrey Shaw

Also, the library has a collection of materials related to Native American storytelling traditions, both general and tribally specific.  There is also a thorough collection of Native American, First Nations and Alaska Native history materials in multiple formats, which can be used as background research and creative inspiration.  Films made by Native filmmakers are also actively collected and available for use by students.

On March 16, 2011 UNM ARTSlab, Santa Fe Complex (sf_x) and the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) shared our NSF PFI fulldome research at the Digital Dome @ IAIA in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The event was sf_x’s WedTech, a weekly semi formal presentation that usually occurs at the Santa Fe Complex.

Excepts of our annual report along with images from this public presentation are below.

Development of a software API for dome development
Team leader: Dr. Joe Kniss (Advanced Graphics Lab) Partners: AGL, ARTS Lab
Dr. Joe Kniss led a team of graduate students (Jeff Bowles, Matthew Dosanjh, Vahid Normoofidi, Andrei Buium) to develop an OpenGL software platform that would allow real-time rendering on curved surfaces. The basic idea of the software was to take a typical OpenGL application and intercept the rendering code to render to an off-screen buffer instead of the screen, as it would normally render. This off-screen buffer was then distorted by virtually mapping it to a spherical structure on the graphics hardware, which was used by the GPU to compute what each projector in the dome should display in order for the dome visualization to appear correct to a user standing in the center of the dome. The result was a framework that allowed us to run real-time rendering applications in dome environments without distortion, and all one needed to do was to modify the existing code to have this new rendering path. The project, called DomeGL, was a success and it enabled the students to port several applications to the dome quickly and easily.
Portable dome development

Team leader: Stephen Guerin (SF Complex), David Beining (ARTS Lab) Partners: SF Complex, ARTS Lab, Lumenscape

One of the drawbacks of digital fulldomes as raised in the brainstorming workshop is that they can be expensive and not many people have access to this technology. To this end, the teams from SF Complex and ARTS Lab worked on low-cost, portable dome solutions that would enable more people to experience dome technology.
The Santa Fe Complex (in association with Joe Abraham Dean from Lumenscape) worked on a cloth- based dome that could be easily transported and set up in about a day (Fig. 3). This portable dome has market potential since it allows users to set up dome environments at a relatively small cost.

A cloth dome designed and built at the Santa Fe Complex.    The fabric and structure is very lightweight, making the dome very portable for deployment in remote venues. This allows people who normally would not have access to a full dome to experience full dome content.

Calibration of projectors in multi-surface environments

Team leaders: Dr. Pradeep Sen (Advanced Graphics Lab), Stephen Guerin (SF Complex) Partners: AGL, SF Complex

Domes present an ideal surface onto which to project content because their shape is well known. This allows software such as DomeGL to correct for the aberrations introduced when projecting onto the curved surface in order to display content correctly. When projecting content onto arbitrary surfaces, such as the corner of a room, the problem becomes much harder. The purpose of this part of the project is to calibrate the projector and camera automatically, so that the image viewed from the point-of-view of the camera looks correct despite the distortions introduced by the room environment. This problem was tackled by both teams in AGL (Dr. Sen working with graduate student Vahid Noormofidi) and at the SF
Complex (Stephen Guerin working with Cody Smith, Steve Smith, Bjørn Swenson, August Swanson, Skyler Swanson, Scott Wittenberg).

Binary code patterns projected onto the corner of a room. Each pixel in each picture represents either a 0 or 1 in the camera-to-projector map.

New input devices for navigating virtual environments

Team Leader: Dr. Joe Kniss (Advanced Graphics Lab), David Beining (ARTS Lab) Partners: AGL, ARTS Lab

Dr. Joe Kniss (AGL) demonstrates the skateboard interface that he built along with a set of graduate students and the ARTS Lab team. The skateboard interface allows more intuitive navigation of immersive environments.

Teaching Fulldome Production Courses

Team leaders: Ethan Bach (IAIA), David Beining (ARTS Lab) Partners: IAIA, ARTS Lab

The teams from IAIA and ARTS Lab have built and set up a digital fulldome at IAIA, which is now in operation and being used to train the next generation of dome users how to work with this new technology.  The ARTSLab team is offering a course focusing exclusively on immersive media and interactive visualization. The purpose of this course is to teach students at UNM about the exciting applications that are being enabled through fulldome technology, and the students have the opportunity to put together dome content themselves as part of the course.

A wide-angle picture of the IAIA dome suspended in the air. The IAIA dome is designed to be rotated and lifted up and down, which allows it to be used in a wide variety of configurations and for a wide range of immersive applications.

Photo by John Hagen