Leap Motion musical UI for closed eyes

How many musicians do you know that play with their eyes closed? Not many computer music apps allow this. Bloom is an exception.  http://www.generativemusic.com/bloom.html

As an exercise, I tried to make something like Bloom, using Leap Motion. With your eyes closed you can accurately position your hand at the level of eyes, shoulders, hips, etc., And you can quickly move to a point directly outward from your nose, or shoulders. This is the basis of sobriety tests.

The interface, works with a hand motion like sprinkling seeds. Every time you open your hand, it triggers a note based on the height of your hand. It also triggers one of the “Bloom”  circles at the XY position.

The prototype was done in Max/MSP Jitter. It was derived from a “bloom clone” project by John Mayrose at: http://www.johnmayrose.com/maxmsp.html

Here’s an example:



folder: bloom


  • (main patch) circlething.maxpst
  • (poly~ sub-patch) FMPoly2~.maxpat
  • (Leap Motion main-patch) leap-finger-switch.maxpat
  • (Leap Motion sub-patch) leap-switch-test2.maxpat
externals and dependencies

Note: If you don’t have a Leap Motion sensor, you can use a mouse.

If you are using Leap Motion, download the aka.leapmotion external – and add it to your Max file path in options | file preferences: http://akamatsu.org/aka/max/objects/


(if not using Leap Motion sensor, skip to step 4)

  1. Plug in the Leap Motion sensor.
  2. Open leap-finger-switch.maxpat and click the “start” toggle. 
  3. Wave your hand around – it should be detected and displayed
  4. Open circlething.maxpat
  5. If using mouse, just click in the black “circlething” window to play.
  6. If using Leap Motion, click the message box to activate Leap Motion
  7. Then open and close your hand, over the sensor to play
  8. High notes are higher in the window.