Want to show someone how you feel? A project from Brazil lets you do this literally by turning your emotions into physical objects. Love Project captures people’s data as they describe personal love stories and converts this into tangible items with a 3D printer.
Participants were asked to tell the defining love story of their own lives while covered in emotion-monitoring sensors. This may sound daunting, but each person did this in isolation so that felt comfortable and relaxed. While they narrated their stories, the sensors gathered data on their changing emotions through brain activity, voice and heart rate.
This information was interpreted through digital technology. Requena explains on his website:
Using environmental computational processing, an interface was created by D3 to interpret the data collected by the sensors, transforming the different inputs into a single language, and allowing real-time visualization of the participant’s emotional states.
This data was sent to a special program that the team developed to model 3D objects in Grasshopper, a graphical algorithm editor. The model is composed of particles which are shaped according to the emotional data. The heart rate determines the thickness of the model, the voice sensor controls the particle velocity and the brain waves cause the particles to either repel or attract one another.
Requena wanted the objects to be functional rather than abstract forms. As a result, the program creates three different every day objects: a lamp, a vase and a fruit bowl. The participant’s data determines which one of these objects will be created.
The models are each unique and, after being visualized on screen, they are sent to a 3D printer and printed in polyamide, ceramics, glass, ABS or metal.
Requena and D3 Studio are currently working on an app that will make it possible to tell your story via a smartphone and visualize it in a model in real-time. The participant would then have the option of sending this to a 3D printer.
Next year, the team will host workshops for children and teenagers to teach them about design processes with the use of technologies such as parametric software, sensors and 3D printers. Requena explains on his website:
Focusing on children and adolescents from low-income families, this step will expand the project’s sphere of cultural references, demystify these technologies and encourage young people to develop their own design projects.
Love Project takes self-expression to another level through data capture and 3D printing. What’s more, the decision to make the models everyday objects means that in the future you could give your partner a lamp, vase or fruit bowl that is truly from the heart.