Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Fractal flowers

Fractal daisies
Close-up detail
After several solid days and a steep learning curve, I think I'm beginning to get to grips. It's not easy! When you have about ten layers, changing one layer can alter things dramatically, it's the unpredictability that makes it hard work. But still, I had a look around the internet at fractal flowers and thought, I'd like to do something like that. So, exploring various formulae and transformations, I came up with this, which I'm quite proud of! It consist of 8 layers, all the same formula but with different parameters, and using combinations of hard light, soft light and multiply, with some transparency in several layers.

The flowers are a combination of daisy like settings on a flower trap, in shades of delicate pink with a darker green for the foliage, with fine lines curving over the background of pastel blue-green and lilac. It started off as an idea for a Christmas design but evolved into this, simple but, I think, effective. I liked the corner idea as it left plenty of room for text on invitations and cards. Here it is on a wedding invitation:

and looks equally at home on cushions and pillows:

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Fractal frolics - Ultra Fractal 5

Two styles of fractals
Last year I bought a copy of Ultra Fractal, but didn't have much time to play with it. Now I have and I'm just discovering the infinite possibilities. I'm not maths oriented by any means so it's a question of pushing buttons until I see what I like.

The software has a vast range of formulae and transformations - some I only just discovered this week! It also has layers, with all the overlay modes, so you can combine different formulae, colours and transformations. There is probably more but I've only just started. Large size or complicated fractals can be rendered in tiles to stitch together later.
The first finished one I rendered in December last year is a curly tentacle-like pattern with background shading that gives it some depth, so it looks like a writhing sea monster waking up in the ocean depths - or is that just my vivid  imagination? It's a simple single layer fractal in two colours, which I decided to change the colours later in Photoline.

These, I think, look particularly good on cushions and iPad cases. They were made using the Pheonix (Julia) formula with Triangle Inequality Average outside (these terms mean nothing to me, but may be of use to someone!)
Fractal tentacles throw pillows Yellow blue black swirls fractal iPad air cases

Appropriately just in time for Christmas, I've discovered how to make some very attractive fractal snowflakes, with shading on blue that makes them look cold and icy.
They are again single layers, both using Newton2 formula with Orbit Traps and Kaleidoscope mapping set to a symmetry of 6, one using Waves and the other Lines trap shapes. I'm finding it fascinating, and sometimes frustrating, how zooming in on different sections gives a completely different look.

Icy snowflake stylized pattern greeting card Icy fractal snowflake greeting card

Still using the same formula, but with no mapping this time is a lacy white fractal wedding invitation, using Mirrored Waves and a cube root transfer function. This gives it a soft floaty effect which reminded me of a bride's veil with a lacy and sparkly edge. The last purple wedding invitation is my favourite so far. It's a 3 layer fractal using the Slope (Scaled Ikegana Newton) formula and Unroll Cardioid mapping, the bottom layer using Orbit traps gradient (UF5), second layer Lighting, and top layer Minimum Functions. Of course there are many other variables involved such as colour gradient, zooming, transfer functions. This one reminds me of peacocks, perhaps two birds circling each other, as the central motif has an eye like a peacock feather, with blue and yellow tints - only a small section of it is on the invitation, the complete version is on the canvas below.
Blue and white fractal wedding 5x7 paper invitation card Purple fractal peacock feather wedding 5x7 paper invitation card
Designs available on greeting cards, pillows, canvasses and more