13 January 2010

Selected Works by Kerry Mitchell

I asked Santa to bring me "Selected Works" by Kerry Mitchell. But, I must have been bad, because he didn't leave it for me Christmas morning. However, my lovely wife did get it for me for my birthday.

It is 100 pages long. It contains a little over 100 images. The range of images contain within is quite impressive. It covers images Kerry has made over the last 10 years. Kerry includes brief descriptions of the Mandelbrot Set, Julia Sets, and Newton's method. He also includes some space-filling curve images, geometric images, and photographic manipulations. I particularly liked the geometric images and photographic manipulations.

Kerry's style generally results in simple, yet striking images. He focuses on the beauty of the math, and less on artistic use of layering that some seem to like to constantly complain about. However, many of the images are comprised of many individual layers. This is not really that obvious unless you understand the techniques he commonly uses. The images are very much art, regardless.

The quality is very good. I wouldn't call it excellent. It was printed by lulu.com. It is 7.4x9.7, perfect bound. It is not printed as a photo book. As a result, the vibrancy of the images is not what it would be if printed as a photo book. However, most of the images don't suffer much from this, as there are many black and white, and limited palette images.

My main complaint is that the book size and format lead to smaller images. I would prefer a larger format that would allow for larger images. However, this would result in a more expensive book. So, I understand the trade off.

I would also prefer to have the book printed as a photo book. I think many of the images would benefit from being printed more as photographs.

You can get the book from Amazon.com. It is now listed for $35.36, down from the original $44.95.

All in all, it is a great example of a great collection of images from a very accomplished fractal artist. It is well worth the money. As I keep saying, I hope that more artists will self-publish a book of their works and make them available.

Well done, Kerry.

Now, I'm just waiting for him to come to town on his book tour to sign my book like he promised he would if I bought a copy. :-)

Interesting Photo Technique

Now this is an interesting photographic technique. Have you ever heard of tossing your camera while it takes a picture? I certainly never considered it. If you're curious, check out the following link.

Camera Toss Photographs

What I found particularly interesting was the number of images in the post that looked fractalish in nature. A number of them looked like Spirograph, or similar types of images. I found it quite creative.

Though, I'm not sure how comfortable I am with tossing an expensive camera and lens combination in the air. Especially, if I were to toss it to someone else, as some of the examples did.

31 December 2009

Art, Craft, Guilds and General Ramblings

I'm taking a little break from posting photos. I'll likely start again after the first of the year, either here or on a web site I'm working on setting up.

There has actually been some interesting reading at OT lately. A couple of commenters have actually dared to disagree with the OT authors. Somewhat surprisingly, they haven't yet been labeled as trolls and banned. Probably because they haven't been linked to the UF "establishment" yet. Although, the use of the word "demagoguery" got the OT author to put forth another conspiracy theory that Damien is issuing orders for the commenters. ROTFL.

Perhaps it is because the comments being offered are more theoretical and opinion based that doesn't cause OT to put forth claims of "troll", "hater", etc. Had the comments offered facts that show OT to be wrong, I've no doubt that those making the comments would be swiftly banned.

The series on the "Fractal Art Guild" raises some interesting points. However, I view it more as an essay on how to blame UF and its popularity for the "problems" in the fractal art world. It's a more indirect criticism of UF than past articles, but is still a criticism just the same. As at least one commenter pointed out, the "guild" is largely just normal group dynamics. Nothing really wrong with that. Read it and decide for yourself.

On the other hand, the articles talking about art and craft raises other issues more generic to discussions of art. The OT authors seem to have a real problem with considering anything that looks nice as art. They claim this isn't the case, yet at the same time, say that fractal art that is simply nice to look at isn't valid art. To be art, the work must make some social, political, or other kind of statement to be valid art. I've never understood this attitude. Art doesn't have to be beautiful to be considered art. But, I think most people prefer beautiful art. Art certainly doesn't have to make some social, or any other comment, to be art. That is a valid use for art, but it is in no way a criteria for something to be art.

Most of Ansel Adams' photography work doesn't make any sort of cultural statement. Yet, his works are considered some of the premier fine art photography ever produced. Most of it is nice to look at. Does that make his work merely "craft" as defined by the OT articles? I don't think so. Adams was most certainly a master at his craft.

Fractal art, as I've said before, is abstract art. It is very, very difficult to make abstract art say anything beyond its visual impact. The OT authors never have succeeded with any art I've seen from them. The closest example they have shown is by Guido, and his art really only has impact if you know the title or the story behind the pieces. The example shown by OT isn't very visually appealing by itself. It really only takes on significance when you know the title or the story behind its creation. That doesn't make the works any more or less art. It just means that the impact is much less if you don't know the title or what the artist's intent behind the work.

OTOH, if a work of art is related to some social or political issue, but is otherwise mediocre, why should it be considered better or more significant than an excellent work that makes no such statement? This seems to me to be the line of reasoning that OT takes. I don't think so. To me, art should stand alone on its merits. Any statement that any given work makes would only add to its significance, not be its significance.

So, why is there this hang up with the meaning of fractal art? Perhaps one reason is the desire the be accepted by the traditional art world. By making statements with your art, or making a particular piece have some meaning, there is a perception you are more valid as an artist. I think this is nonsense. Some of the worst pieces of crap ever produced have been by artists trying to make a statement of one sort or another. I'm sure you can think of a number of examples that you've seen.

Also, the whining about the BMFAC continues full speed ahead. There have been some valid criticisms, but most are just whining. IMO, this contest still displays some of the best fractal art currently made. I know OT doesn't like the contest or the art chosen, however, they have yet to provide examples of what such a contest should display according to OT's criteria.

One of the valid criticisms is the size of images required. This doesn't really bother me, but I understand it. The organizers are free to require any size they choose. Most art has a greater impact in a large print than it does in a small print or on the computer monitor. I know my photographs certainly do.

A couple of the pieces chosen seem to be a bit puzzling because they don't really exhibit normally expected fractal properties. This is a bit odd since the event is supposed to display fractal art. Morgen has an interesting critique of the contest. Her comments carry more validity with me because she hasn't spent years trashing UF, calendars, and contests.

I find it rather humorous that Nahee has surfaced again in comments on several recent OT posts. He suggests compiling a list of all the "flaws" with the BMFAC. I'm sure he and some others would really relish such a compilation. Of course, OT already has. And of course, such a list really doesn't accomplish anything useful. It just justifies the dislike of the contest in the minds of those who already dislike it. Plus, it gives such people a feeling of doing something rather than actually doing something.

Nahee also comments in the "Scams and Viruses" post,

The same can be said about copying the actual programming code from FREE open source software, and then turning around to sell their version without giving credit or acknowledgment.
This is a very old claim that Frederik copied Fractint code and included it in UF. I think this claim arose because UF has the ability to parse Fractint formulas and parameters. No proof has ever been offered, and Frederik has denied this. I suppose people who believe this think Frederik is lying. But, given how simple it is to parse Fractint formulas and parameters, it is easy to believe that a skilled programmer such as Frederik would find it trivial to write code to parse Fractint data. This is especially evident when you realize that the formula language in UF 2 was far more sophisticated than Fractint's. I found it a bit sad that Philip agreed with this bogus claim.

If you have been reading OT for any length of time, I think you'll clearly see that their agenda is to diminish UF and its impact in the fractal world. While their recent posts tone this down quite a bit, the undercurrent of criticism of UF is still quite apparent. Time has long since past for people to get over this. Focus on your own work. Make works that you like, whether visually appealing or not. Say, or try to say, what you want with your work, even if that means making the title say what the work cannot.

I think the biggest problem with OT is their constant negativity. Whether the topic be contests, calendars, UF, galleries, etc. the vast majority of comments are negative and complaining. There is the occasional positive post. Recent posts have been more positive that most, yet they still have the undercurrent of complaining. Their preference is to try to tear down events because they don't like the rules, or setup, or artwork chosen, etc. Why is it necessary to try to destroy events rather than take steps to create new outlets that display fractal art in a manner that you think is better? I've not figured this out. All I know is that it is much easier to complain than to actually take action to affect change that you want to see.

As I conclude, I'd like to point out that the latest post on "Printmaking" is quite good. Though, I do find the constant derogatory references to "Fractalbook" rather petty and juvenile. The post primarily focuses on fine art printing, which can be rather expensive, especially when framing is included. On the whole, I with the sentiment of the post. I would expand to say that you should consider printing your images even using the lesser expensive methods from your local Sam's Club or Costco. 8x10s are very inexpensive. Even a 20x30 print is less than $10. While not museum quality, the quality is very good. I've printed quite a few digital collages of photographs at that size and the results are very impressive for the price.

I hope everyone has a very Happy New Year and than in 2010 you make progress on achieving your goals.

24 December 2009

Merry Christmas

I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas.

For the new year, I would like to challenge everyone to choose to be happy. Choose to be positive. Choose to take action to correct problems or situations that you see in your corner of the world. If you don't like the direction fractal art is heading, take positive action to affect changes you would like to see. Don't be just a complainer, but find solutions or alternatives. Get your art off the monitor and into people's hands whether it be by prints, calendars, books, etc. Create new outlets for people to see fractal art rather than just complaining about the few outlets that currently exist.

27 October 2009

Photos of the Week #40-42

I've been playing with the Lightroom 3 beta. These images were processed with the beta version. I exported them with varying degrees of the grain feature applied. I've been reading a number of comments from photographers on various blogs that they miss the grain from film. Some Photoshop plugins allow grain to be applied to images to emulate the look of film. I'm not sure how much I like these particular images, but the features opens up lots of creative possibilities.

Now, if Adobe can get into the final release of Lightroom 3 the new Content-Aware Fill feature they are working on, that would be really slick. This feature allows you to select, or brush over, an area that you want to clone out. Make removing unwanted features from images really easy. The demo video I saw was quite impressive.

Here's another link to similar technologies being researched.

25 October 2009

Photos of the Week

Yes. I know I'm behind. I'll get caught up this week.

04 October 2009

Photo of the Week #39

27 September 2009

Photo of the Week #38

I've thought about commenting on OT's latest screeds. But, I decided that their series after they hunted and found a prototype of the BMFAC winner page was just too stupid to reply to. It's really sad to see seeming intelligent people going off on such a stupid rant.

20 September 2009

Photo of the Week #37

13 September 2009

Photo of the Week #36

06 September 2009

Photo of the Week #35

30 August 2009

Photo of the Week #34

Foul Ball

25 August 2009

Another Fractal Book - Kudos to Kerry

Just saw this announcement on the UltraFractal mailing list by Kerry Mitchell.

I've finally completed and published a book of my art. You can find it on Amazon.com:


It's not cheap, but it contains over 100 high-resolution color images from my web site. Go buy several! :-)
If you like Kerry's images, I'm sure you'll like the book. It's priced at $44.95. Not cheap by any means, but for a 100 page book, that's not too bad for a self-published book.

Will others follow and publish their own books? I hope so. Though, I'm sure there are some that would rather complain about things they have no involvement in or control over and try to tear them down rather than take positive steps of their own.

19 August 2009

Photo of the Week #33

12 August 2009

Photo of the Week #32

Just pretty flowers.

05 August 2009

Photo of the Week #31

03 August 2009

Benoit Mandelbrot Fractal Art Contest 2009

Well, there you have it. The Benoit Mandelbrot Fractal Art Contest 2009 has been announced. I'm sure the critics at OT are jumping with joy at the announcement.

It looks like it is basically the same format as the previous contests with one notable exception.

2.1. Eligibility: Anyone may submit their own artwork to the contest, except selection panel members and their immediate families. (See below for a list of selection panel members.)
I'm sure OT will soon be taking credit for this change. Perhaps they deserve some credit. I certainly don't have any problem with the change. But then, I didn't really object to anyone on the panel having images included in the exhibition. Yes, this event is a contest. No, it's not the kind of contest OT wants to lead everyone to believe must be run.

Will this put an end to the seemingly endless stream of posts complaining about the contest, the ethics of the organizers and judges, rules, etc.? I hope so, but being somewhat cynical about OT, I doubt it. Though, I'll be happy to be proven wrong.

28 July 2009

Photo of the Week #29 & #30

I was traveling last week and didn't get around to posting. I was in Virginia on business and had an afternoon to explore. I discovered that I was close to Jamestown, Williamsburg, and Yorktown. I only had time to visit Jamestown and Yorktown.

Jamestown consists of a very nice historical museum and recreations of the fort, Indian settlement, and ships. At Yorktown, there is the Victory Center and Yorktown National Park. I went through the Victory Center and drove through some of the National Park.

This image is one of the Redoubts. I think it is Redoubt 9. You can see an aerial view here.

This image is the surrender field where Cornwallis surrendered to Washington, effectively ending the Revolutionary War.

16 July 2009

Photo of the Week #28

I like the variety of colors in this one. You can't really see it in the small size, but the patterns made by the sparks is quite interesting.

07 July 2009

Photo of the Week #27

02 July 2009

Photo of the Week #26

I hope everyone has a great 4th of July holiday weekend. And remember, it's men and women, like those flying the jets below, as well as diligent citizens, that allow all of us in the US to continue to enjoy the freedoms with which we are blessed.

A wise and frugal government, which shall leave men free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor and bread it has earned -- this is the sum of good government. -- Thomas Jefferson
Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it. -- Thomas Paine

24 June 2009

Photo of the Week #25

This is from the same storm and location as last weeks photo.

17 June 2009

There They Go Again

Since OT seems to be crying in their beer with their latest post, I decided to shed a little light on their woes by giving my opinion of their beefs. So, lets dive in.

Initially, I had expected it to have an enormous influence on fractal art simply by virtue of being a collective venue ready to showcase and demonstrate new ideas and fresh directions in fractal art.
The idea was a good one. A variety of contributors and viewpoints, had the potential for providing for interesting ideas being discussed. Perhaps a bit conceited with the opinion that they would be an "enormous influence" on the fractal art scene. Unfortunately, it didn't work all that well.
The hostility that erupted when concepts like politics and art criticism --concepts which are commonplace in the larger world of art-- were introduced in the context of fractal art, made me realize that the fractal art world, despite being a high-tech art form, was in fact a primitive, medieval oligarchy and a free and open 21st century venue like Orbit Trap was not welcome by the reigning Dukes and Duchesses.
The first posts on politics used images that had nothing whatsoever to do with politics. It was only the titles chosen that conveyed the commentary. As I said then, and several times since, it's not using art as political or social commentary that is the problem, it's using abstract art to convey that message. It is extremely difficult to do that without adding text in a title or description to convey the meaning, which diverts focus from the art to the text, IMO. There is really nothing wrong with expressing political views, but do people really want to read them on a blog that is about fractal art? I certainly don't. Nor do I suspect that people want to read mine.

Criticism of art isn't a problem. Personal attacks are. What purpose is served by lumping large numbers of people and demeaning them as "fractalbookers"? When the critics themselves post some of the worst examples of fractal art I've ever seen, criticism of the work of others is a bit shallow. It also doesn't help when OT receives criticism they label their critics as trolls, or OT-haters, or part of the UF elite, or whatever their choice label is. IOW, their focus was never just on the art, it was also one the person(s) creating the art in many cases. To their credit, they have also showcased many individuals very positively in some posts.

Plus, the hostility didn't really start with politics or posts critical of art, the hostility started when OT decided to declare war against the BMFAC and Fractal Universe calendar. Numerous posts were made full of personal attacks and ad hominem attacks that were based on nothing more than the opinion of the authors. Any objective points that were made were obscured by the personal attacks. The archives here discuss this extensively. You can see the actual posts and comments there. So, OT is once again intentionally being misleading by not presenting an accurate accounting of their own history. Not really very honest or objective or unbiased, is it?
Criticizing Ultra Fractal... a big no-no! I posted my reasons for not using it and war broke out. Over the years (yes, years!) I reviewed and praised a number of fractal artists who use Ultra Fractal exclusively and yet Orbit Trap is still seen, in brute simple terms, as being anti-Ultra Fractal. Why? Because in fractal art's medieval environment you're either a vassal of the king or a vassal of his enemies. I chose to just speak my mind about Ultra Fractal, to just post my personal opinion, but that itself was an idea way ahead of it's time in fractal land, although it's a common activity, and a well-respected one, in the rest of the art world today.
Posting one's opinion about UF isn't a problem. It's a tool, and there are many tools. But, the criticism went way beyond that. It went into personal attacks on those who used it. There have been derogatory posts about layering, etc. There have been posts about how UF is "destroying" fractal art. The majority of people who use UF are labeled as "fractalbookers", or accused of copying the methods of experienced UF users. People have been ridiculed for taking classes to learn how to use UF more effectively. So, yes, it is quite reasonable to view OT as anti-UF. There aren't posts critical of Fractint, the dinosaur of fractal programs, or any other program. All programs have their pros and cons and those who like them and dislike them, so why the focus on UF? Because it is the most popular, widely used, and most capable program around? So, the comment above about "just post[ing] my personal opinion" is a bit disingenuous. The posts went beyond just "opinions".
Frankly, in my opinion, anyone who couldn't see that the Benoit Mandelbrot Fractal Art Contest or the Fractal Universe Calendar was run in a blatantly unfair way was either stupid or lying. What shocked me the most about the response to Orbit Trap's exposés of these contests was how many people who seemed to have nothing to gain spoke up to support the very entities that had been ripping them off every year by crowding them out of the winners circle. So many of the poor peasants came out to defend their beloved ruling elite. How could there be so many suckers? Is there no one out there with half a brain?
Here we have the typical OT attitude. You don't see the world my way you are "stupid or lying". That's a sure way to win friends. I've said before the BMFAC could have been run better. But, to accuse the participants and judges as having ethical breaches is beyond the pale. OT left that part out. I say that if OT can't understand that there are different forms of contests that run from informal to formal and degrees in between, they are just ignorant fools. That's basically the same attitude they have. I'm right, you're wrong, and you are stupid and unethical and a drone of the UF fiefdom if you don't agree.

Whether or not the BMFAC or calendar could, or even should be run differently, is different from calling the organizers and participants unethical and self-serving. That is what OT did, and that is an important fact they left out in their whine above about the criticism they received when they launched into their continual rants about these two events. It's one thing to criticize how something is run. It's another matter entirely to personally attack those running the events as unethical and self-serving, etc. People were "ripped off"? Who? How? Because the OT authors don't produce art that is likely to be accepted in either of these events? I've wondered for a long time if OT even has half a brain when they talk like this.
The Benoit Mandelbrot Fractal Art Contest is in hiding, possibly MIA or KIA. At least for the time being it's been neutered, but who knows? Those people don't talk to anyone except themselves. Orbit Trap is the only place you'll get an unbiased perspective on fractal art and what's going on, even if we have to guess sometimes.
I personally don't know what is up with the BMFAC. But, calling OT unbiased has me ROTFLMAO. They do have a perspective, but it is hardly unbiased. Bias isn't necessarily bad, but it is when you deny it.
And now, the big event, if you haven't noticed, is that the Fractal Universe Calendar's annual contest, as announced by Tina Oloyede in a belated response to Orbit Trap's enquiries, will no longer operate as a contest as it has for all these years but will instead just contact a few artists directly to ask them for artwork.
Isn't this one of the changes OT had suggested? What really, is wrong with allowing anyone to submit images for consideration? So, OT doesn't like the style of art in the calendar. Does that really bother them so much? Is there room for only a couple of fractal art calendars? Why won't they create their own, or organize their own? They never address that suggestion, they only scoff at it.
Of course, that was what they really doing all along, but the big deal is that the medieval pagentry and pomp is gone and the fractal art world's longest running contest has now left the Middle Ages and entered the social equivalent of the 16th century Renaissance. And that, in my opinion, is the biggest news of the last three years in the fractal art world. They didn't even make that announcement that on their own website! It was made in the comments section (yes, the comments section) of an Orbit Trap posting.
I'm surprised Tina answered their questions. The questions were only trolling to find fodder for future posts, IMO. I would have ignored them, as they rightly were for so long. But, I'll let OT revel in the exclusive of having the answers posted in a comment.
Although, I suppose, the fact that all this came about in response to the persistence of what is really nothing more than just another freely hosted blog on Blogger run by what is commonly seen as "two whiners" in the fractal world, is perhaps something of equal merit. How is it that Orbit Trap could run that venerable and established contest out of town? Maybe telling the truth about them month after month made them feel so uncomfortable they just had to do something?
OT "[ran] ... contest out of town". Talk about delusions of grandeur. I doubt OT had anything to do with anything related to the calendar. We'll know more if the details are ever posted about what actually was behind this year's calendar. But, I'm confident OT had nothing to do with any of it. As important as OT thinks they are, they just legends in their own minds.

Of all the things OT is known for, truth isn't very high on the list. I've detailed numerous times where they have been less than truthful. Most of the time they are misleading and disingenuous, but once in a while they are outright liars.

But, the real enlightening insight in the entire post came in the comments. A commenter said,
I've been reading Orbit Trap since it started, because I'm interested in fractal art, and there's been some interesting critical discussion of what constitutes fractal art, what makes it good or bad, and so on. Great stuff!

On the other hand, I just can't muster any interest in this whole calendar/contest/fractalus business. It's just not interesting. I don't care about the calendar or the astonishing revelation that some banal images of spirals aren't on some website any more.

Now that you have declared victory, I hope we can get back to some discussion about, y'know, art or something.
As reasonable comment, IMO. OT does have thought provoking and interesting posts at times. But, the constant complaining about the BMFAC and calendar, or complaining that people don't want to see political commentary, etc. is petty and boring. So, how do they respond to the above? This way,
"I just can't muster any interest in this"

--and yet you take the time to post a comment about this thing you have absolutely no interest in!

I'm sure looking forward to discussing fractal art with someone who postures like that.
Boy, OT can sure dish it out, but they can't take it. Of course, honest, objective readers have known that for a long, long time about OT. A common response by OT is to attack commenters when they voice objection or criticism of something OT wrote. It's no wonder people don't bother to comment much to OT anymore. At best, you get a snide response to a reasonable comment. At worse, you are attacked and in the extreme, banned. Another response like that and the person commenting will likely get banned or labeled as a troll.

OT needs to learn that if they are going to set themselves on a pedestal and takes shots at all things fractal, they are going to receive shots in return. If they can ever do that, and take the shots as well as they can give them out, then there might be hope for them to achieve the lofty status they have built up in their minds. But, don't hold your breath. After all, this post is just from a troll and OT-hater and vassal and [insert OT's favorite derogatory adjective here].

Photo of the Week #24

09 June 2009

Photo of the Week #23

02 June 2009

Stranger to the Truth? or Photo of the Week 22

I guess I got under OT's skin again. I'm sure it won't be the last time.

And wasn't I talking about transference last time -- that is, the tendency of our adversaries to act out the very behavior they are projecting on us? Weren't Spix's remarks fraught with more than a little meanness? And what do Childress & Co. mean by muckraking? Would an example be like when one's photoblog of nature pics stalls, so you (once more) hit OT up side the head, and, sure enough, the regulars drift back for another round robin of snarky personal comments? Would that be muckraking?
I guess OT can't tell the pot from the kettle. OT fired the first shots, and continues to do so, in speaking out with ad hominem attacks and a plethora of other forms of personal attacks. Whining about Rick's comments is a little petty coming from the stream of attack posts at OT. Go look at their archives for many examples.

Sorry, but the muckraking was Toby's word, not mine. I guess following the OT logic because Toby said it, and I didn't delete it, it's the same as me saying it.

Regardless, how many times have I said complementary things about OT posts? I guess in response I deserve a snide remark about posting photos. Whatever. I post the photos because I choose to. I comment on OT's posts when I choose to.

One thing is for certain, no one has ever accused OT of being truthful. Take this comment on a recent post,

But wait. Hold the (cell) phone. It seems Childress has revamped the comments policy on his blog to read:

Comments may be deleted if I think they cross the line as to what I find acceptable.

Meaning, I guess, "if I don't like them." But that's okay because Childress can still claim the moral high ground over us since:

I will indicate that a comment has been deleted if I have the need to delete a comment.

Such a disclaimer, of course, absolves Childress of any ethical fuzziness. Why just delete a comment when you can also publicly embarrass the person who made it?

Recently? Hardly. I put those comment up well over a year ago when I created the blog. And, to clarify for the benefit of OT's obtuseness, the policy primarily pertains to profanity. But, I do claim the moral high ground over OT because I speak the truth. I have no need to lie, as OT repeatedly has in the past. I have no need to levy ad hominem attacks.

Since I'm feeling less apathetic at the moment, I'll address more OT misgivings.
Childress also has political problems with OT:
Nope. I have problems with inept attempts to make political statements with art that isn't suitable for political statements.

However, on the recommendation of OT I did wander over to view Guido's images. I will say they are more appropriate to that topic than any image OT has tried to use in a similar manner. But, political or social commentary using fractals doesn't interest me in the least. I've never seen it done well, and to me, it speaks more about the artist than the topic.

Update: I'll add that, IMO, Guido's images only work to the degree they do because they have a semblance of photo-realism to them. Had they been more abstract, they wouldn't have worked any better than any other attempt I've seen at using fractal art to make a political or social comment. I'll challenge again, if anyone has examples of this done well, I'm interested in seeing it.

As for my blurb,
“This program is the most versatile and easiest to use of just about any program I have used, not just fractal programs.”
Ken Childress
I said exactly that. It was over 10 years ago when I made that comment to Frederik. It still stands true today. Where I differ from most is that I don't have the need to bash those programs I don't use, don't like, or don't understand. I realize people should use the tools they want to create what they want. There are many tools for many purposes. The fact that one stands far above all others seems to bother some to the point that they need to levy endless criticisms of the program and those who like to use it. It's sad really.

And, just to please OT, I'll conclude this post with this week's photo.

26 May 2009

Photo of the Week #21

Kids playing with bubbles in the park.

Fractal Book

I was browsing Renderosity today and came across this post by Cornelius Van Meurs. I don't know who he is, or anything about his art. But, he has published a book of his work. For that, I give him kudos for taking that step. His book is available at lulu.com. Unfortunately, it is only available in Dutch.

It would be nice if some or all of the complainers about fractal calendars and fractal contests would do something similar.

19 May 2009

Photo of the Week #20

This was during a late afternoon storm yesterday. This is pretty much how the sky looked.

12 May 2009

Photo of the Week #19

An experiment that I thought came out well.

10 May 2009

How Soon They Forget?

I get perverse enjoyment out of reading OT. They had a short spurt of good, thought provoking, and interesting articles a couple of months back. But, lately, they seem to be back to the old ways of distortions, personal attacks, and misstatements (I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and not call them lies).

The only posts Orbit Trap has ever deleted were several written by Keith Mackay -- and those were removed at his request. If you think we censor reader responses, then test that theory. Send us your thoughts. Assuming your remarks adhere to our comments policy, you'll soon see them on this blog -- just as clearly as you can see Rick Spix's opinions above.
Well, this is not quite accurate. I've had comments deleted. OT changed their policy to moderate comments because they could not handle my questions and refutations of their posts. They refused to publish comments by at least two other responders. I know of one of the two who they have since allowed to comment. I have not bothered to try to comment once I was expelled. That's one of the reasons I started writing here.

Here are captures of comments before they were deleted. My first comment was deleted before I realized I was banned and didn't capture it. I don't remember what it was, but it wasn't liked and so it was deleted. You can go see what is still there if you find the "Beware the Anti-Fractal" post.

Of course, they will say that I "violated" their comment policy. Perhaps I did. But, they never said how I violated their comment policy. To make the claim that I violated their comment policy, but never stating how is rather disingenuous wouldn't you say? If I did, one would think it would be easy to state how and show an example. But, you won't find it.

Like attacking someone's work or character rather than addressing his or her ideas and observations?

This comment was absolutely priceless. OT has done nothing but this when it comes to discussing the BMFAC, the Fractal Universe calender, or "fractalbookers". And yet, OT has the chutzpah to claim others are guilty of doing what they accuse others of? Perhaps they are. But, one thing that has been proven beyond doubt is that this is the OT method of operation and has been for years. Hypocrisy, thy name is OT.

Oh, and the political comments give you an insight into just how the OT mind works. I know OT is dying to tie fractals with political commentary. But, it just doesn't work very well. Certainly, OT has never been able to successfully manage it.

06 May 2009

Photo of the Week #18

More flowers that survived the snow.

30 April 2009

Photo of the Week #17

I was traveling for work this week and forgot again to post an image. This is one of our tulips that has weathered the snow of the last month pretty well. I processed this to be a bit higher contrast than as shot. I'm still trying to decide if I like it or not.