The Pankraz Piktograph is a portrait-drawing robot that can take photos of its user at the press of a button. You can style and translate an image into a vector representation which the robot draws on paper with a pen.
The Pankraz Piktograph is the creation of Felix Fisgus and Joris Wegner as their Master’s thesis. The duo was inspired by historical drawing automatons like Maillardet’s automaton and more modern inventions like Patrick Tresset’s Paul the Robot.
Every drawing by the robot is a unique piece of artwork, as it has mastered various drawing styles. You can literally end up creating a fast minimalist line drawing, or a finely rendered detailed portrait.The designers have designed it keeping in mind the portrait drawing robot being used in settings like trade fairs, museums, and parties. One can create entertaining images with it, unlike the usual photo booths you get at events.
How does Pankraz Piktograph work?
The Pankraz Piktograph is powered by Raspberry Pi 3 that controls a 3.5″ display and a Raspberry Pi camera. Using the wired remote control user takes a photo of themselves, while the Raspberry Pi generates a vector-based graphic using it as a template.
This is transmitted to a Teensy microcontroller, which makes the robot’s drawing arm move using stepper motors.
For a detailed explanation, you can read here how the software turns the photo into an artistic rendering. You will also learn how the makers got the robot arm to be able to control the pen delicately.
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