Digital Dome Production I course with Ethan Bach

This fall, Ethan Bach will teach Digital Dome Production I  at the Digital Dome at IAIA.

Course Description:
Get in on the cutting-edge of this new technology while learning how to use the DigitalSky software, create panorama and fisheye images, and learn the history, present, and future of the digital dome. This course requires a willingness to experiment, research, take risk and break new ground. From the basics of how to place a still image on the dome to exploring and experimenting with storytelling, installation, and art. Students can work with the dome in various positions utilizing its unique ability to articulate. A public showing of work is required as part of the final project.

The 1 credit colloquial that ran this spring semester was a tremendous hit. Over 15 students took the course and walked away with basic concepts in dome production.This fall, Bach will revisit and build on these concepts in a full 3 credit course in digital dome production. The preliminary course outline can be found below. Non-degree seeking students can sign up for the course beginning on May 16. Instructor permission is required, so make sure to send email to prior to attempting to register or if you have questions.

For information on how to register visit or call 505-424-2300.

The course information is as follows:
NMAD351 Digital Dome Production I   Tuesdays/Thursdays  9:30am – 12pm.
Fall 2011 runs August 22 – December 9.

There is still plenty of room, as many IAIA students wait until after pre-reg to register. Please feel free to invite friends and colleges to this course.

Course Outline
Week 1

Review Syllabus and Introductions
History of Immersive Art
History of the Geodesic Dome
Future of the Digital Dome
View existing dome content

Week 2
DigitalSky Software – placement and previsualization
Students bring in existing work to place on the dome
Placing Images on the dome
File Formats and Resolution
Midterm project assigned

Week 3
Project 1: 360° Panorama
History of panoramic photography
Stitching the pano

Week 4
View student panos
Students pitch midterm projects
Making masks for dome projects

Week 5
Project 2: Fisheye
Fisheye Photography and Video
Fisheye lenses and digital fisheye effects

Week 6
View student fisheye
Experiments in the Digital Dome
Artist Lecture

Week 7
How to run a dome show
preview midterm projects and critique

Week 8
Midterm presentations

Week 9
Project 3: Surround Sound: Surround Sound recording and editing
Final project assigned
How to use the Digital Dome as installation
Artist Lecture

Week 10
Listen to student surround sound projects
Project 4: Video on the dome: issues and work arounds
Students pitch Final Project

Week 11
View student videos
Planning the end of semester show
Color Correction and Contrast: FCP Color and Photoshop

Week 12
Work on final projects
Making the fulldome Master

Week 13
preview final projects and critique

Week 14
Work on final projects

Week 15

K. Bibliography of Course Development:

Fulldome Blog by Hugh Walker.

What the Hell is Fulldome (video) by domefest.

Introduction to the Fulldome Master (video) by Chabot Space and Science Center

Hue’s Beginner’s Guide to Fulldome Production

by Hue Walker

How to Create for the Digital Dome by Ethan Bach

Other required readings will be provided by the instructor.

L. Adequacy of Library Holdings in This Area

-Rethinking Curating: Art after New Media by Beryl Graham and Sarah Cook

– What Sound Does A Color Make? by Kathleen Forde

-360 Degree Imaging: The Photographers Panoramic Virtual Reality Manual by Phillip Andrews

– Shivers Down Your Spine: Cinema, Museums, and the Immersive View (Film and Culture Series) by Alision Griffiths

– Virtual Art: From Illusion to Immersion by Oliver Grau

– Future Cinema: The Cinematic Imaginary After Film by Jeffrey Shaw

Also, the library has a collection of materials related to Native American storytelling traditions, both general and tribally specific.  There is also a thorough collection of Native American, First Nations and Alaska Native history materials in multiple formats, which can be used as background research and creative inspiration.  Films made by Native filmmakers are also actively collected and available for use by students.

One comment on “Digital Dome Production I course with Ethan Bach

  1. I checked the lens effet in the rdneer settings a few days ago, thinking i would achieve a fish eye effect but no luck.Thanks for sharing this, it will sure come in handy.Just a question, as this fish eye is in fact done with a refraction/transp material (very clever btw), will it make the rdneer time longer (refraction/transp always make my rdneer time explode)?

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