A Multi-Touch Art Medium Inspired by Sand Animation

2011.05 | CHI 2011


Sand animation is a performance art technique in which an artist tells stories by creating animated images with sand. Inspired by this medium, we have developed a new multi-touch digital artistic medium named SandCanvas that simplifies the creation of sand animations. SandCanvas also goes beyond traditional sand animation with tools for mixing sand animation with video and replicating recorded free-form hand gestures. In this paper, we analyze common sand animation hand gestures, present SandCanvas‘s intuitive UI, and describe implementation challenges we encountered. We also present an evaluation with professional and novice artists that shows the importance and unique affordances of this new medium.


creativity, table-top computing, multi-touch art, sand animation


Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems

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Project Info



Rubaiat Habib Kazi, Kien Chuan Chua, Shengdong Zhao, Richard Davis, and Kok-Lim Low