May 27, 2007 - 0 Comments - Fyre -

Bubble Ships

After playing around with Fyre for a week (no pun intended…), I’ve discovered that, like most creative programs (ie. they automatically make things) Fyre’s creative abilities are focussed on just a few options. You could almost say that it’s like a pyramid, where 80% of the menu options are there because they’re logical variations on the program’s main creative theme, but only a small group are what you end up working with.

I think these Bubble Ship, glass-eggs-in-a-kerchief, formation have some technical name because they all have similar structural characteristics. There’s another one that keeps popping up that looks like one of those square pillows that people put on their couches for decoration.

There are some very algorithmically appealing features in Fyre. The main one is the Random Parameters (Ctrl+R) button which is my all-time favorite when it comes to computer graphics. If the program utilizes a concept or mathematical function (ie. “thing”) that has many possible variations and details to it, then the random inputs can be extremely exciting. Yes, exciting.

The Bubble Ships are like this. Although the actual structures are very simple, the way they are rendered such that there is great variation in tone and combined in layers (layering almost always produces interesting results) produces a wide range of unique images. Furthermore, there’s an added effect from the grayscale rendering that gives the images a technical drawing, or engineer’s scrapbook (sure, engineers have scrapbooks) appearance.

All this then combines to produce these futuristic designs for a car or spaceship that looks like a streamlined bubble. One or two might look like a quilted pillow…

The one below I had on my desktop for a few days. I like to use my desktop as a sort of gallery of what I’ve done lately that looks good. I think it’s encouraging and also helps me to get a more objective impression of what I think is good by viewing the image in various other contexts throughout the day.

What’s strange is that the more I look at this one, the more I like it. To me it’s sails and clouds. The dark stretch on the bottom-right looks a bit like a distant coastline seen from a ship. The rising swirling lines suggest the heat of the day and the cloud formation and wind which comes from it.

You can actually adjust the images in Fyre as they seem to be made up of a number of smaller elements, similar to the images in Apophysis. By selecting the mysterious option, “A-B” you can move the inner pieces around in a way which resembles the moving of mirrors in a kaliedoscope.

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