Eye tracking technology isn’t new, but it’s always fascinating. The applications for eye tracking technology are limitless. It’s already being used in the medical, defense, aviation, automotive and psychology industries. I especially like eye tracking as it relates to helping people with disabilities. One of my favorites is the Eye Tracking Wheelchair that is steered with eye movement. Today I’d like to talk about eye tracking technology as it relates to artists.
Artist Graham Fink sketched the drawings you see below with only his mind and his eyes. He wanted to explore the way artists “see.” I read a very interesting article about this on The Drum. It explains that if you aren’t an artist, and you are asked to draw a face, you will most likely draw a circle for the head, and then add eyes and a nose, etc. That face won’t look a real face.
However, by taking the hand-eye coordination out of the mix, and by only using your mind, you will find that it’s much easier to draw a realistic-looking face. If you were to use eye tracking software to draw that face on a computer screen, you might be surprised by the results.
According to Gizmodo:
It’s made possible by the fairly impressive Tobii eye tracking hardware, which shines infrared light into the eye to detect motion. The reflections are then processed to translate motion into hardware inputs in real time. But the real talent here is clearly in Fink’s possession.
In order to draw successfully using this method, the artist must have incredible concentration, or at least that’s my guess. I’m constantly being distracted and looking at other things all day. Even though the Tobii system uses complex algorithms to ensure accuracy, I still think if I used it, the face that emerged on the screen would be a mess.
If you happen to be in London, you might consider checking out Mr. Fink’s Drawing with my Eyes exhibition, which is going on through March 21. He will be drawing live portraits at the exhibition using this eye tracking technology. You can read an interview with Mr. Fink here on the creator’s project. Like I told you at the beginning of this article, it is fascinating!
YouTube: Drawing with my Eyes (by Graham Fink)