Fireworks patching contest

Leading up to the 4th of July celebration in the troubled year 2020, American module makers LZX Industries set up a patching competition for simulating fireworks using video synthesis. Always eager to learn and enticed by the T-shirt prize for all contestants, The Voltage Painter took on this challenge.

The assignment was to deliver a short video that was made without camera or external image input and patched entirely on LZX Industries Eurorack video modules, with the exception of non-video utilities.

As can be seen in the compilation video of all the entries, people had very different approaches to displaying firework-like shapes with the limited tool set of a video synthesizer. Gijs imagined the fireworks being fired up towards the viewer, starting from a small dot and ending in a colorful explosion. He pasted appropriate and meticulously timed audio samples of actual fireworks underneath the video synth footage. The sound was removed during the judging process of the competition. Congratulations to Michael Dewberry for getting the most votes and winning an amazing LZX Arch module!

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The basis for the fireworks is a basic diamond shape, created by mixing horizontal and vertical ramps. Frequency multiplication and modulation increase the shape’s complexity. A keyer that is modulated by an envelope makes the shape grow from a dot to a full-size explosion. The LZX Memory Palace module is responsible for the rotation and sizzling effects. The event timing and color variations were created using regular Eurorack clocking and sequential switching utilities by Doepfer and Ladik. 

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