Digital Firework Display: how it’s made

Digital Firework Display: how it’s made

Digital Firework Display: how it’s made

As with everything this year, bonfire night looked a little different. Professional firework displays were cancelled, people elected instead to sit at home and watch the fireworks the neighbors bought from the local supermarket.

So we decided to create a digital firework display using contours. Using POI data for the epicenter of each firework, considering ten random Places Of Interest (POI) near to the Houses of Parliament, as this is where the story originated.

Image 1. POI locations. Left side – First POI group; Right side – Second POI group.

Using TRACC, we ran five 30-minute public transport accessibility calculations and five 60-minute calculations. From this, we created contours using TRACC, which were divided into 10-minute ranges, three for group one and six for the group two. The difference in accessibility distance mimicked a variety in the size of explosions.

Using TRACC’s ‘Contour Per Destination’ function, we could simply run the calculations and have the separate data for each location. Once we had all contours, we took them out of TRACC and into QGIS. This software helped us to classify those contours to achieve a layer per range, which have been exported out of QGIS and into Premier Pro.

Premier Pro is a video editing software. Using the individual layers created in QGIS, we simulated the firework by having each layer offset in the timeline. Meaning originally the layers of the firework build up and expand out as they go through the ranges and then the first range disappears followed by the second and so on, creating a ripple effect for the explosion.

The next step was randomising the explosions in a way that they would overlap, both in the timeline and the frame but that the screen would not be overloaded. To finish off the project we added some text at the end and exported one final time.

All that’s left to do is sit back in the comfort of your living room and enjoy our little display.

Keziah is the Digital Marketing Executive at Basemap Ltd. She has almost 2 years experience in the digital realm after graduating from the University of Plymouth with a BA in Illustration and a MA in Publishing.