Artist Eric Daigh used exactly 22,765 pushpins to create a portrait of Pinterest founder Ben Silbermann for a feature in Fast Company’s 2012 Design Issue. Co.Design interviewed Eric Daigh to learn more about his creative process.
Now, Daigh has his pushpin mosaics down to a science. He photographs his own portrait, runs it through a software conversion process that creates (red, yellow, blue, black, and white) dots and then he examines it at the pixel level for algorithmic abnormalities, which he’s gotten very, very good at spotting. Whereas the human eye will want a shadow to contain a smooth gradient of color—maybe blue to black—computers tend to render these blocks out into distracting patterns that need to be hand-smoothed.