How Technology influences Art - a research group at the Maastricht Institute of Performative Arts - Zuyd

3D scanning

for a more detailed look into this project,
please visit the project website
(updated regularly)


TO BE OR NOT (May-June 2020)
A live performance project questioning our disapearance into virtuality, open for international theatre students.
this research projectbuilds on the collaboration in the
PLETA project - Platform of European Theatre Academies
a research project by Peter Missotten and Woody Laurens (Toneelacademie Maastricht)
Application form can be found here

resulting into '
Der Untergang der Titanic'
this research is part of the
PLETA project - Platform of European Theatre Academies
a research project by Peter Missotten and Woody Laurens (Toneelacademie Maastricht)

3D SCANNING FOR THE STAGE (part 2 - May-June 2016)
resulting into '
HADES' a performance as part of the PLETA project 'An Odyssea'
a research project by Peter Missotten and Woody Laurens (Toneelacademie Maastricht)
with Diederik Kreike, Caro Derkx, Tim Bijtelaar, Hendrik Kegels and Amanda Dekker.

3D SCANNING FOR THE STAGE (part 1 - May-June 2015)
a research project by Hans Lasschuit and Woody Laurens (Toneelacademie Maastricht)
with Kaz Schoonebeek, Evelien Cannaert, Stijn Van Erp e.a.

In this research project, we try to find out whether virtual, 3D scanned 'actors' can be introduced in a performance, without the need for hightech stuff.

Nefertiti Hack / Nefertiti / Free
by AD&D 4D
on Sketchfab

3D scanning of persons is a well established practice, especially within the Hollywood movie and gaming industry. But the machinery for it remains rather hightech and expensive, well outside the reach of a small performance company. 3D scanning in general is a booming business, but almost exclusively orientated towards the scanning of non-moving objects for the industry. Most scanners require you to sit down very quiet for quite some time, unless they are done with a huge and expensive rig of over 30 professional camera's in a dome like construction.

Is it possible to do that with a much smaller rig of cheap consumer camera's? How workable is that in practice? And how does the technology influence the artistic practice?

In this first round, several software solutions were examined - Strata Foto 3D, Autodesk’s 123D Catch, Agisoft Photoscan etc… It all didn't work out self evidently, most of times because of some tiny technical problems. Firing all of the cameras with the remote control proved to be challenging, even with IR-relay modules. And Strata Foto requires an underlay print which proved to be very unpractical for moving objects.

All in all, the research time proved to be way too short to get a decent and usable result. At the same time, the students designed a very inspiring 3D installation, as a set for the project. Somehow, thinking in 3D influenced their mind and gave them inspiration for a new kind of set design, even if the 3D scanning proved to be quite challenging.

Next year (2016) we had a second edition of the same project - this time resulting in a full fledged performance as part of the Odysseus project, where several European theatre schools showcase their specialities. It's fun thought that the Toneelacademie chooses to participate with virtual actors.

To be continued….