Showing posts from February, 2007

Ten Filters that Shook the World

Well, it's actually just one, but with such power, such awesome, earth-quaking power.

Ilyich the Toad's multi-crystal.8bf is a fairly standard distortion, multi-faceted, lens filter. We've all seen variations of this all over the place.

I've always thought stuff like this was just more cheap digital tricks, and for a while I was beginning to think I was losing my objectivity by using it so much. But there's something strange and intriguing to this gimmicky thing.

The DNA of seeing.

The what? The way we see things. We are at home in the housefly's eyes, so to speak. One fragment at a time is about all we can really handle. It is a picture of pictures.

That's why 3D rendering is so hard: our eyes are always seeing more than one thing -straight ahead, and peripheral.

We see a series of fragments, but they're stitched together by very sophisticated software in our brains to give the impression that we're looking at a single smooth image; a sort of menta…

Baba Yaga and the Sierpinski Roundabout

Some filters make mountains, and some filters make dust. More about Illyich the Toad's multicrystal.8bf.

I start with a fractal, and then smash it up. I smash some more. Not much fractal left now. If I smash further? Less fractal stuff right?

No. This is where the filter gets pretty weird. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust... and fractal to fractal. Busted and fractal have the same Latin root. See the Sierpinski Triangles appearing?

Original Inkblot Kaos Image

I start with a fractal and by apparently destroying it (ie. filtering) and moving further away from something you would call fractal imagery, and closer towards something like just plain digital imagery, I instead end up with a fractal again.

Which brings me to Baba Yaga. She's one of those characters from folktales who's an evil, child-eating witch. Being a Russian folktale, it's a little different from the Western European or British kind. Actually, it's rather surreal.

Baba Yaga's house walks around o…

Oracle of Evil

Orwellian, 1984, Mouthpiece of Baal, Howling Telescreen. My latest fractal Rorshach test.

It looks a bit like an old "Victrola". They were one of the earliest record players, before electricity was widely available, and relied on a hand-cranked mechanism that turned the record after it was wound up. The sound was amplified mechanically (not electronic) by the large megaphone-like cone that was directly connected to the primitive, hollow needle.

Original Tierazon Image, Parameter file

RCA Victor made the Victrola and was also a recording company whose logo was a dog looking into the amplifying cone of a record player. So realistic were the RCA Victor recordings, according to the logo, that the dog was completely convinced that he was hearing "His Master's Voice", as the slogan stated.

His master's voice. The Snake.

Coaches and Artists

I dislike the "artist" label. Maybe it dislikes me, too.

Original from Tierazon 2.7

To me, the word, "artist" conjures up the image of someone who works hard and approaches their "work" with discipline and dedication. They are the subject of biographies and documentaries; art emanates from them. That doesn't describe me.

I'm more of a scavenger, a graphic entrepreneur, someone who finds, compiles, edits, and presents. Maybe a talent scout or agent or coach. I am the coach for a small team of digital machines.

I never touch the canvas, and I don't know where the paints are kept; ask one of the artists. I suppose I could try doing something myself, but I feel more comfortable taking the mis-directed talents of algorithms and pointing them in the right direction.

A coach works with other people's talent. You could call the coach a different kind of artist; coaching does require some artistic ability, of sorts. I don't know. I just pre…