"Drawing on Screen" effect

Hello everyone!

My eLearning team is on a mission to create video content with an illusion appearing as if the instructor is drawing on your computer screen. I have not been able to find much literature on the web about this process, other than through this article: http://laughingsquid.com/ingenious-dry-erase-glass-lightboard-for-video-lectures-allows-presenter-to-face-camera-while-writing/.

This is an excellent article, but there are still a few areas of the process that are unclear to me, and I'm wondering if any one has tried this successfully? I have a limited budget and do not have a big recording studio to film this in (I am actually filming in a very small office (10x10 room).

It seems like lighting is critical to make this effect really "pop". What kind of LED lights should be used? Should it be frame the whole way around the glass board? Should the lighting just be on the top of the board? What specific types of LED lights are recommended and where can you purchase them from?

If you film into a mirror, as suggested in the article, how big should the mirror be?

Any guidance would be greatly appreciated!


4 Replies
Steve Flowers

Hi Cassandra - 

I really love this concept. However, I think it'll be really expensive to pull off well.

As a fallback, you might try filming the instructor using an iPad then syncing up the presentation. There are some really keen tools for that in the App Store. 

  • http://www.morriscooke.com/applications-ios/explain-everything-2 - I really like all the stuff you can do with explain everything. Real time annotation over the top of video is pretty keen.
  • http://www.touchcast.com/ - Touchcast has an interesting model. It's intended for layered interaction but I think you could probably record the output to make a video.
  • A combination that produces live overlays using a tablet (like a Wacom, Surface, or even iPad) to produce an overlay on top of live video. I haven't seen this done but I think using a live compositor and a little practice, this could turn out pretty well.
Cassandra Miller

Thank you, David and Steve.

I have been doing a lot of research on this lightboard idea and I found a video on how to do it "inexpensively":


This seemed to help me a lot so hopefully it will help others as well. I fortunately already have a video camera which is the most expensive piece of equipment for this process.