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Showing posts from April, 2007

A Series of Radishes

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I've always liked the collection or series genre. A series of four pictures contains an extra, fifth thing. The mystery of animation is that there is actually no movement, just a series of still images. Movement is the collective quality of the individual images which disappears when they are separated.



Collection, or association, creates a context which can change our initial impression of the individual images. It's something that's been done in many ways for probably thousands of years, but I still find the effect intriguing and fresh. Maybe that's what makes collages so interesting, even when they're made with uninteresting pieces, the sum transforms the parts into a symphony of scraps.

I think the differences in each of the images cause us to return and look more closely at the others and regard previously overlooked features with new interest. Or less interest. It works both ways. Editing is the key here.



I saw a documentary about a commercial artist who…

Terraform - The Digital Side of the Moon

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My latest digital place to hang out began with installing Ubuntu Linux on my zippy new computer. It was a big step for me because my new computer has Windows Xp on it, and although I have a valid license, I bought the computer used and in the event I ever had to reinstall Windows (like if I messed it up while installing Linux) I'm not sure I'd be able to reinstall it without buying a new copy of Xp.

Considering how paranoid Microsoft is these days with piracy, and how I can't bring myself to pay $150 for yet another copy of Windows, splitting my hard drive into two partitions and installing Ubuntu on the other one involved the possibility of abandoning Windows once and for all. That's a big move for someone like me since my digital art hobby revolves almost entirely around Windows programs.

Playing around with Ubuntu on my old PC (P2, 450mhz) wasn't too much fun. I was however, able to confirm that at least one fractal program I used would work on Linux using &quo…

Beautiful Empty Image

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I think one's mind needs time to grow before they can relate to some of the higher aims of art. Lately I've been sensing the emptiness of simply "nice" looking fractal images. It's strange because I've always liked the pretty, eye-candy fractals and found that sub-genre quite inspiring.

My recent return to using Xaos in it's new revision (3.2 from 3.1) seems to have brought to fruition the concept of art as more than something nice to look at. There's nothing new about this; it's one of the oldest themes in art, that being, ideas; turning the wheels of the mind instead of just the little pinwheels of the eyes.

Xaos excels at color, and color is the stuff of pretty pictures. But this time around using Xaos I've been a little bored with just making colorful, sugary things. In fact I've allowed a number of images, that I would have previously considered "great", to fall onto the digital workroom floor and become lost because they…

Star of Arabia

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log(1/z)*(c^3) (Parameter file: bulb30.ink)

This is actually the original image made in Inkblot Kaos with only a few minor alterations like: resize (anti-alias 4:1) with lanzcos; rotate right 90 degrees; sharpen (enhance detail -Xnview). Cosmetic post-processing as opposed to Burn Ward post-processing.



India Ink.8bf with queen merge or blend (add, subtract, difference...) mode; Ostromoukhov pattern.

Interestingly, the indexing, color reduction process added some interesting depth to the image by changing the steps in the orange-brown gradient or palette. Even something as "neutral" as indexing can become a creative filter when used improperly or without reading the instructions on the side of the can.

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Strange New Fruit

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I remember talking to a guy who had lived in a remote part of the Phillippines. Where he was there were no roads and to get to the nearest store or settlement he would go by horse or walk. This area he lived in was around a large lake where the one of the largest crocodiles had been caught.

One time he was off in the jungle or forest or whatever, and came across an unusual root or vine. Pulling it up out of the leaves and dirt, he followed it to a large rock where it connected with a strange vegetable/fruit thing. This became one of his favorite things to eat. They only grew out in the woods however, and were hard to find.

And so it is with these glowing chain/netted curtains in the mandelbrot mode of the second barnsley formula in the 1/mu plane from Xaos using the squares incoloring mode and the first edge-detect filter. They're not so hard to find once you've got the right configuration, but I'm beginning to wonder just how many people go walking off this far from t…

Icon

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I've always been intrigued by Greek religious icons. Growing up and living in a predominantly Protestant and Catholic environment, I found the concept of revelation expressed in pictures to be one of the most interesting aspects of the Greek Orthodox "distro" (to use a Linux term) of Christianity.

I haven't done much reading about it, but what is there to read? You don't need to understand Greek to look at a Greek icon. That's what's so fascinating about it. Being a speaker of English, a relatively new language, there's no layer of translation between my mind and the icon like there is with the Coinic Greek New Testament text. Although it might help to know something of the cultural and historical context of the icon maker, just as it helps sometimes to understand the context that some Bible passages were created in, I'm guessing that some icons deal with ideas that are within the grasp of all generations.



Can a fractal be an icon? If fractals…

The Gold Mirage

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Sometimes the past fails us, and we have to write our own ancient legends. The 8th voyage of Sindbad, and other things that were probably imagined, but never recorded. How many books could be filled with the things that are unwritten?

Ideas come and go. Swirling, returning. Maybe a story has to be told several times before it's written just once.

There is a very old Arab legend, dating back well before the times of Sindbad, and even of Bagdad itself, about a mysterious sandstorm. Like a dust devil or tornado in size, it would swallow up lost travellers, even whole caravans and take any gold they were carrying. All it would take actually, was their money.

As the legend goes, this storm rages on continuously somewhere in the desert, becoming richer and richer as time goes by collecting more money from travellers.

As is the case with sea monsters and other terrifying things, enough survivors exist to keep the memory of this mysterious sand storm alive, but not enough to make it en…