Projection onto a building near london bridge
By Joe Sandford-Hughes
Projection Mapping

What is projection mapping?

Projection mapping is a technology which allows you to transform everyday objects into a canvas for video and other digital content. It's a way of bringing the visual power and impact of large-scale video or digital content to almost any surface - from buildings, to cars, to retail window displays. Unlike standard video which is projected onto a flat screen, projection mapping uses clever software to 'map' the projected image to the contours and shapes of the object it's being projected onto.

A face projected onto a tree

How to set up projection mapping

Setting up projection mapping requires a few key things:

Understanding of the space and environment

The first step is to understand the space or object that you want to project onto. What are its dimensions, its shape, its features? Are there any obstacles in the way, or any particular angles or perspectives that you need to consider?

Content creation

Once you have a good understanding of the space, you can start to create the content for your projection mapping piece. This could be anything from abstract visual effects, to storytelling and narrative-driven content, to brand messaging and advertising. The possibilities are almost limitless! The key is to create content that is specifically tailored to the shape and features of the object you're projecting onto, so that it 'fits' and looks as amazing as possible.

Projection equipment

You'll need high-quality projection equipment, such as projectors and lenses, that are capable of delivering bright and clear images onto your chosen surface. The number and type of projectors you need will depend on the size and complexity of the projection mapping set-up.

Media server and mapping software

A 'media server' is a powerful computer that is used to store and control the content for your projection mapping piece. It will often have specialist software installed that allows you to 'map' your content onto the object or surface in front of you. There are several different software options for projection mapping, including industry standards like Disguise and d3, as well as more accessible and user-friendly options like Resolume.

Installation and technical expertise

Setting up a projection mapping piece can be quite technically complex, and often requires specialist knowledge and expertise. This might include skills in rigging and hanging projectors, calibrating and aligning multiple projectors, and programming the mapping and playback of your content.

Testing and refining

Once your projection mapping piece is set up, it's important to spend time testing and refining it to ensure that the images look as good as possible. This might involve adjusting the position and settings of your projectors, fine-tuning the mapping of your content, and considering factors like ambient light and viewing angles.

Why does projection mapping look so good?

Projection mapping is a popular choice for events and installations because it has the ability to make static objects come to life and create truly immersive experiences for audiences. By using clever design and creative content, projection mapping can create the illusion of movement, depth, and even transformation within the object it's being projected onto. For example, a building can appear to crumble and rebuild, a car can seem to drive off into the distance, or a simple block of wood can be turned into a dynamic and ever-changing sculpture.

Projection Mapping inside a venue
Building Projection Mapped

PYTCH is a born out of an ambition to deliver fantastic experiences in new and innovative ways. Whether it’s a live event, performance, exhibition, installation, or beyond. Our team is obsessed with creating immersive and impactful content that people can’t stop talking about. We love to work with brave clients who dare to do things differently and share our passion for pushing the boundaries of what is possible.