Integrating a green screen into a video or image is not as simply as merely tossing a green sheet onto a wall and calling it a day since the subject’s lighting also needs to match the lighting in the scene behind them. But rather than spending a fortune on specialty lighting or taking way too much time in editing software, YouTuber Jelle Vermandere wanted to create his own DIY ring light that can illuminate in one of millions of different colors.
The core of this project was the microcontroller, as it would be responsible for taking incoming requests from a client device over WiFi and converting them into tangible colors. By using a Nano 33 IoT, Vermandere could serve several webpages to connected devices while also having the ability to use standard WS2812B LED libraries. Whenever a new HTTP GET request comes in, the web server reads the requested path and parses the values accordingly. For example, an RGB color can be read from a string that contains values for the position, hue, saturation, and value which are all used to create a gradient.
As for the physical enclosure, the ring light houses one strip of 5V WS2812B LEDs that face inwards for subject lighting and another strip of 12V white LEDs that face outwards for scene lighting. This combination provides even coloration and prevents bright spots from appearing on the subject.
With the ring light mounted on his ceiling, Vermandere tested it out by placing himself within a virtual world with ARKit and Unity3D, and as seen in his build/demonstration video below, it works great. To see the code for this project, you can visit his GitHub repository here.