Willy Nolan


The software requirements for the visual control system at Halcyon in San Francisco were straightforward. It needed to control nine HD projectors as well as the club lighting system.

More interesting was the process of pixel mapping the 20 universes of individually addressable LEDs.

Mapping LEDs is a commonly requested task. Typically people create a structure, cover it with strips of LEDs and then want to be able to apply a video or image to that structure. This last step is usually where projects get interesting.

The mapping approach used at Halcyon was very similar to how texture mapping works in 3D animation and parts of the process are shown in the second image. The process was as follows:

This approach also creates a 3D model so anyone can pre-visualize how content is going to appear on the structure in real time.

The featured video is a behind the scenes look at the final installation before the nightclub opened. There are more examples online.

Halcyon GUI Mockup
3D model of LED structure
UV map for structure
Structure with UV map applied
Halcyon LED installation

The mapping process and eventual result.