At the end of 2023, I created a little project that let people send us Holiday greetings over the internet to decorate a wall of fame and spread joy throughout our home.

When people sent in wishes or doodles, they could witness their creation roll out of a little thermal printer at my home. A dedicated filmcrew made sure there was a life stream of the printer 24x7 on Youtube.

The dedicated film crew

Some Legos holding a Raspberry Pi with a camera module to livestream the project 24x7 to Youtube. To get the Pi streaming to Youtube I only needed to install ffmpeg and libcamera-apps.

Running this command did the trick and started streaming to a Youtube channel that was setup for it:

/usr/bin/libcamera-vid --inline --nopreview -t 0 --width 800 --height 600 --framerate 24 --codec h264 -o - | /usr/bin/ffmpeg -f lavfi -i anullsrc=channel_layout=stereo:sample_rate=44100 -thread_queue_size 1024 -use_wallclock_as_timestamps 1 -i pipe:0 -c:v copy -c:a aac -preset fast -strict experimental -f flv rtmp://<your-secret-key>

I wrote a web application for the front-end in Java / Spring Boot. And a second little Java service on the Pi to send the entered text or doodles to the printer. I made use of escpos-coffee to help talk to the thermal printer.

So there you have it. Easy peasy and it was a lot of fun to make and see the printer spit out items.

Let your ideas flow, doodle away, and witness the joy of seeing your creations materialize before your eyes.

Give it a try at