Fractals have been described as “never ending patterns”; like snowflakes, lighting strikes, galaxies and waves on a beach. As an artist and engineer I find such patterns fascinating. While nature’s patterns have always inspired artists, the nature of fractals is just beginning to capture the imagination of artists. The engineering part of me loves how computers can create incredibly beautiful fractal patterns from a mathematical score. Like a symphony, fractal patterns can be simple or complex, peaceful or tumultuous, whimsical or serious.
The fractal artist composes the symphony; a collection of equations in a program. The equations are the paint brushes and the color palette. The notes are colored pixels on the computer screen which displays the resulting digital image. Like an artist applying paint on a canvas, randomness can be included in the equations. As a painter controls the degree, velocity, and area of placement of applied paint the equations can be programmed to control the placement, degree and nature of randomness from precisely controlled to purely random. In this way every newly created “symphony” is a unique creation.
When all is said and done, it is the artistic, aesthetic and emotional impact of a work that establishes its value as a work of art, and that value will vary from person to person.