Materials and information for PyCascades 2021 Presentation: Sparking Creativity in LED Art with CircuitPython

Live Demo Resources

To follow along with the demo in real time, youll need:

  • A microcontroller running CircuitPython 6.0 (installation instructions here:
  • An LED strip/string/matrix or a board (like Adafruit's CircuitPlayground Express) with built-in LEDs
  • A Python coding environment like the Mu code editor
  • The CircuitPython led_animation libraries and dependencies. If you have CircuitPython 6.0 installed, you can download just the libraries for the demo from this repository. Use one of the three included libraries:
    • bare_bones_led_animation_libraries A minimal library bundle for use with an ATSAMD21 board without extra flash memory (e.g Gemma M0, Trinket M0 QtPy M0. Note that any board labelled "Express" does have extra flash)
    • complete_led_animation_libraries A more comprehensive set of animation libraries for boards with a bit more memory
    • complete_animation_libraries_with_bluetooth Use these if you have a bluetooth-enabled board
  • Starter code for the animation demo

To install the animation libraries from this repository, drag the correct folder (bare_bones or complete) over to your CIRCUITPY drive and rename it to "lib".

Interactive LED Sculpture

The sculptures in the background of my talk respond to tweets containing the hashtag #pycascadesled and CSS color word (words only, not RGB or HEX). The display colors will change to the color mentioned in the tweet after a three second delay. However, the talk may be streamed on a 20 second delay, so you may not see changes occur instantly.

Presentation Slides

Presentation slides are online at speakerdeck