Arduino & Art/ Sound Installation

I am seeking some assistance with an art project that I would like to complete.

I would like to use Arduino in order to output sound compositions,
when a hand is sensed hovering over/ touching a painting. I would like
to use Ableton live in the process aswell.

Do you have any tutorials on where to start as a complete beginner?

What Arduino products do i need to purchase?

If i were to use electric paint, would this be compatible with Arduino?

Thanks in advance

Hey Kim,

To start off, it depends on what size speakers you’d be using. If you just want something for close range e.g. user standing a few feet away, I’d go for this shield and two of these speakers.

We have this great video here about choosing the right amp/speakers too.

For the touching/waving hand over the painting, could you give a bit more detail on how exactly you wanted to do it, particularly regarding the electric paint.

Hi Kim,

Sounds like a great project underway. The best place to start with Arduino is with a beginner kit. Learn the ropes and discover how to build projects with popular hardware.

Afterward, start honing in on your project and lean into the broader maker community to find content such as this:

You’ll likely find this a useful module for triggering WAV audio files

All the best with it!

Hi Owen,
Thanks for your response!

So i have made a capacitive sensor using bare conductive electric paint and the capacitive library with Ardruino.

The electric paint acts as a conductor rather than having to use wires ect. which completes the circuit (

My next question is how do i go about outputting sound from a capacitive sensor?

For example i will have 5 different WAV/MP3 files which will be loaded into separate pins, I will be using the electric paint to create multiple circuits on the back of a painting so that i can connect it to Arduino. I would like to be able to output sound on each patch of electric paint and connect it with different sounds

My assumption is that I will need to add additional coding so that arduino can read this, and add am amp and speaker?

Is there anyway I can load this onto a USB rather than having it connected to a laptop?

Any help is much appreciated!

Please excuse my basic understanding of how this all works haha

Hi Graham!

Thanks for your response!

Do i need to buy a shield attachment in order to output sound, or is this something I can do purely with the Ardruino Uno?

There are few other companies such as a the bare conductive that have a touch shield loaded with an Mp3 output option, but i would like to figure it out with the tools i already have, if possible ( i have the beginners kit)

for reference:

Furthermore, can I load Arduino UNO with a bare conductive touch board code? Or is there an Uno version?

Hi Kim,

I’d highly recommend using a shield with your Arduino so that you can amplify your output to suit the speakers, but using low powered speakers using purely an Arduino is totally possible. Also, it’s important to recognize that the Touch Board is based on the Arduino Leonardo architecture, so the functionality should be very similar but there may be some compatibility issues with libraries and the Uno. There should be some relevant information here…

Have a great day! And all the best with it!

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