One day I was perusing the internet and stumbled upon a video; Water Light Graffiti by Antonin Fourneau, created in the Digitalarti Artlab. When water is painted, sprayed or sponged on LEDs light up. This seemed like such a cool project, I was inspired to try to make my own; cheaper, easier, desktop version.
They way this works is that the one lead of the LED is separated from the power by a small gap. When you apply water, water forms a bridge that closes the circuit and lights the LEDs.
On their web page there is a link to another video where the artist discusses the process and prototypes he went through for this installation, however the video is in french (unfortunately, I didn’t understand a word of the video). I did however watch what he was doing and it seems like the working prototype was made using a printed circuit board, though one of the early prototypes was made with copper tape, which fit much better with my plan to make a cheap and easy version.
For my version, the materials were acquired inexpensively, from a dollar store and the LEDs and copper tape from Ebay. It is easy enough that you don’t even need any special skills or equiptment and you don’t even need to solder anything.
In one article I read about the Water Light Graffiti installation drew similarities between it and Buddha Boards upon which you can draw on with water and once the water evaporates the image fades. So I modelled my project after a desktop Buddha Board.
Adafruit publishes a wide range of writing and video content, including interviews and reporting on the maker market and the wider technology world. Our standards page is intended as a guide to best practices that Adafruit uses, as well as an outline of the ethical standards Adafruit aspires to. While Adafruit is not an independent journalistic institution, Adafruit strives to be a fair, informative, and positive voice within the community – check it out here: adafruit.com/editorialstandards
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.