Keali-LookingOutwards08

Andante by the Tangible Media Group at MIT visualizes animated characters walking along a piano keyboard, as if they are playing the physical keys with each step. It was by chance that this project attracted me because of its aesthetic of the lit up figures, reminiscent of my recent Mocap project where I modeled the human figure as a pedestrian walking signal. The luminescent representation of the bodies are similar, and this project as a whole feels well-considered and completed; the attributes of the visualization successfully complement each other, and seamlessly integrate the virtual visuals with the physicality of the piano keys being pressed at the right times. I especially found the motive of the work to be very appealing as well: that it is based off the expressive, full-body, and communicative characteristic of learning music, thus promoting an understanding of how music is instinctively rooted in the human body–something that any audience can find relatable and introspective. It is also noted that such approach took advantage of walking as being one of the most fundamental human rhythms, indicating the careful and admirable consideration that went into the decision of representing the movement. I find charming in the color palette of the visuals, especially the brightness in conjunction with how the video in particular was recorded, amidst a darker background that strengthens the design choice of the figures–I can almost see the clips being from a dream or bedtime story scenario, of little lit fantasy characters bringing music to life in some sort of tale. Another neat characteristic is the variety of forms and physiques that were represented: different body types, walking postures, and even some animals! All things considered, I think this would make practicing the piano less lonely, and playing the piano more fun; it is indeed like a little other world.