Modal Camera


The Modal Camera is an experiment in mapping the brightness of a captured image to a modal scale. Some musicians would equate the amount of flats or sharps within a scale to the brightness of its sound. Lydian has a #4, making it the brightest. Locrian is the darkest, as it has a b2, b3, b5, b6, and b7. You could list them from brightest to darkest like so:

  1. Lydian (#4)
  2. Ionian
  3. Mixolydian (b7)
  4. Dorian (b3, b7)
  5. Aeolian (b3, b6, b7)
  6. Phrygian (b2, b3, b6, b7)
  7. Locrian (b2, b3, b5, b6, b7)

In terms of what's going on in the background, I just average out the brightness value of all the pixels in the image, and then arbitrarily map that brightness value to one of the modal scales.

You can find a link to this experiment here.