Ben Crowder

Blog: #fractals

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More Mandelbulber pieces

I’m finding that Mandelbulber is really addictive. First off, two Mandelbulb explorations:

I wised up and started doing a 1px field blur in Photoshop on the rendered images, which helps a lot in getting rid of sharp artifacts. On the first image I also painted in some dots and ran lens blur.

Next, a Mandelbox (Tglad’s variant):

I cheated a bit and used the liquify and oil paint filters in Photoshop to get a more surreal, painted look (hopefully giving it a little more humanity, making it less sterile).

Finally, a Menger sponge:

Going for a folk art look here. I will try very hard not to overuse the oil paint filter. I really will. I promise.

Mandelbox 001–003

Some more Mandelbulbery, this time exploring the Mandelbox fractal instead of the Mandelbulb:

My process for these is to choose a fractal type in Mandelbulber, play around with the fractal parameters till I find an interesting shape, move the camera around until I get a good view, and render it. I then tweak the shader values (colors, specular, ambient occlusion, etc.) and the lights (position, color, etc.) and re-render till I get what I like. Finally I turn on depth of field and add a little fog.

Once I’m happy with the image in Mandelbulber, I export to PNG and open it in Photoshop to add some texturing. I also scale the image down a bit to get rid of some of the rendering artifacts. (It’s not wholly successful, but it does make a big difference.)

And here we are going for an underwater type of atmosphere (via aqua-colored fog and some vignetting in Photoshop):

L-system animation tests

I’ve been playing around some more with the L-system code and modified it to animate the angle property and output each frame to a file. I also added some color and started using blending modes for the brushes. Once I clean up the code, I’ll post it to GitHub.

Anyway, here are some of the animation tests (I used Blender to put the frames together into an animation):

And the first one I did, which is a little too long and a little too fast:

L-system sketches

I’ve been getting into procedural drawing and generative art some more, and last week I decided to try out L-systems. I ported some Processing code to Javascript and Canvas, then modified it and added controls so I could tweak the values and try things out. I also wrote a handful of additional brushes to get more interesting renders out of it (since plain lines can be kind of boring).

The algorithm isn’t entirely accurate — at least based off of the axioms and rulesets I plugged in from the Algorithmic Beauty of Plants book — but I like what I’m getting. I’ll do a second app sometime later with the correct algorithm.

Anyway, the code (which is kind of messy at the moment) is on GitHub. Sometime later I plan to add color selectors and more brushes. You can see the rest of these images in my sketches set on Flickr.