An LED lighting panel to help with your iPhone photos. Sounds super-lame, right? Well, allow me to change your mind, because when you see the Kicker in action, you’re going to want the Kickstarter campaign to finish ASAP.
The hardware portion of the Kick is pretty simple – it’s a panel containing a matrix of full spectrum LEDs which can be set to any color. But it’s the software that really makes this thing cool.
The Kick comes with a companion iPhone app which combines controls for the light with a camera app. Snap away as usual, but when you need a little extra something, break out the Kick and open the control panel, which pops over the camera view. You can use a familiar color picker to set the hue, or you can just tap on the photo itself and sample a color from there. And that’s great, but then we get to video.
The Kick can be programmed to flash and strobe, letting you make lightning effects, or fake the warm crackling light of a fire. In fact, if you have a video of a fire, you can play it in the app and sample a point on the screen. This point will be used to inform the color and brightness of the light. Thus, you can actually use a video of a real fire to generate a fake one.
This is amazing. You know how much work is involved in adding these kinds of effects in post, in order to make CG elements fit into movies? Now you can do it with Lego.
There are two Kicks, the basic version and the one with Wi-Fi. You want the second one, as it works with the iPhone app. This will cost you $139 on Kickstarter (the basic one can be gotten for $89).