Undergraduate Research

 

In Spring 2020, Mandy Rosengren and her Costume Design Assistant, Lydia Vignale, developed wearable technology for select costumes in Some Common Fate. Shown below are the different costumes designed to include sensors, motors, and LEDs.  Also featured are some of the costumes developed for this undergraduate research project in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Tufts University as well as for the play development.

Play Development

Before the play was written, different props and costumes were developed for Moment Work. To the left are some of the 3D-modeled and printed pieces created for the actors to use in Moment Work. Along with engineered pieces, different costumes from trash were also used as shown on the next page. From the work by the actors, Elisa Sturkie and Mandy Rosengren developed the play, Some Common Fate

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StoryLine 1 Sketches and Inspiration

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StoryLine 2 Sketches and Inspiration
StoryLine 4 Sketches and Inspiration
StoryLine 4 Sketches and Inspiration

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StoryLine 3 Sketches and Inspiration

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Voice-Responsive Hat

This cloak was developed for main character of the show to wear during her opening and closing monologue. The cloak would have laser-cut images and words from the monologue that would light up during parts of the monologue. An Amazon Alexa and Arduino Nano were used for the voice recognition of the monologue to light different parts of the cloak. Unfortunately, due to Covid 19, the monologue cloak has yet to be completed. 

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The sketch above shows the placement of the different symbols and words on the cloak. The monologues both focus on the impact that technology has upon our lives, so many tech symbols are included. The play contains many references to Greek Mythology, and the cloak references these as well in the laser-cut designs. This also displays the design of the circuitry for the cloak. Each symbol or phrase on the cloak is lit by at least two white sewable LEDs in parallel and connect to other pieces of the cloak, such as the like symbol and the Facebook logo. The video on the left  displays the working circuit for the cloak using 19 LEDs and a test patch of a laser-cut Instagram logo. When the user says, "Echo," and the programmed phrase of the monologue, different LEDs light. The bottom images display the sewed parallel circuit with conductive thread that lights the Instagram logo. Both the Instagram logo and the sewn circuitry were created by the Costume Design Assistant, Lydia Vignale. 

Motion-Responsive "Sassy"

Serpent Hat

This hat was developed for a character in the play Some Common Fate who plays the serpent mascot at the private high school in the play. To make the snake “sassy,” the eyes of the head roll, and the tongue moves in and out, while the actor says a sassy comment to one of the actors. This action occurs when a person moves within fifty centimeters of the ultrasonic sensor that is underneath the mouth and sewn into the black hat that holds the snake head onto the actor’s head.

 
 

Breath-Responsive Skirt

The breath-responsive skirt was created for the play Some Common Fate, worn by the character Netty who "created" the skirt to fit in with the popular students in her new private school. This skirt contains two circuits: one follows the rim of the skirt and lights red LEDs, and the second circuit consists of four RGB LEDs that change color based on the user’s breathing. Behind the Adafruit Flora there is a felt sensor composed of conductive and nonconductive wool. When the actor breathes, the stomach presses the sensor and lowers the resistance of the sensor, changing the color of the skirt. When the actor inhales, the LEDs change from red to green, and the reverse occurs when the actor exhales.