Help Topics for the FractalArt Program
Contents
Overview
      Quick Tour
Parameters
      Background Color
      'Start' Parameters
      Random Values
      Morphing
Open and Save Files
Export Image


Overview

The FractalArt Program allows you to create Geometric Art, by entering parameters that can morph smoothly from one image to another by small gradual steps.

Parameters may be set as Random, which can produce an abstract image that changes each time it is re-drawn.

All parameters can be Saved to a text file, which can then be Opened to re-create the image.

Images can be Exported to several different image types and dimensions.


Quick Tour

The files described in the following instructions are included in FractalArt.zip (which you can download at FractalArt.org).
When these instructions ask you to open a file, click the [Open] button, and navigate to the folder where you had extracted FractalArt.zip.

When these instructions ask you to change parameters, click [Draw Image] to see the results.
  1. Open 1_OneLine.txt. The only parameters set are X1 and Y1 (0%, 0%), and X2 and Y2 (100%, 100%). Therefore, a single line is drawn from the upper-left corner, to the lower-right corner. Experiment changing those 4 parameters (and click [Draw Image] to see the results).
  2. Open 2_TwoLines.txt. This file includes X3 and Y3 parameters (97%, 5%), so a second line is drawn to the upper-right corner. Experiment changing the 6 parameters which cause these two lines to be drawn.
  3. Open 3_Curve.txt. Experiment changing the Curve parameter.
  4. Open 4_TenLines.txt. This file draws 10 lines, which morph using the following parameters shown after the End heading: Red and X1. The color gradually changes from black to red, and the starting X1 axis gradually changes from 0% to 50%.
  5. Open 5_100RandomLines.txt. 100 lines are drawn, with each line beginning at a random point location (X1 and Y1). Experiment changing the Line Width and # of Lines parameters.
  6. Open 6_RandomGreen.txt. Each line contains a random green color, and a random starting point.
FractalArt.zip also contains the following additional sample files:
  • Neon.txt
  • Rainbow.txt
  • Random100.txt
  • Random1000.txt
  • RedSpaghetti.txt
  • Spiderweb.txt
  • Swirl100.txt
  • Swirl500.txt


Parameters

Changes to Parameters will not affect the image until [Draw Image] is clicked.


Background Color

The four dropdown boxes at the top of the screen determine the Background Color of the image. The first parameter (Opacity) sets the Transparency of blank pixels.
If Opacity is set to 0, then the other Background Color settings (Red, Green, and Blue) will have no effect, since the background will be completely transparent.

Setting Opacity to 0 allows you to import the .png image into Photoshop, and add any image or gradient as the background color.


'Start' Parameters

The parameters to the right of the Start heading (the dropdown boxes with a blue background) determine the first line that is drawn.
  • Curve: A line may only have a Curve if it contains three points; i.e. if X3 and Y3 are set to values other than "n/a".
    You may use the 3_Curve.txt sample file to experiment with different Curve values.
  • RGB: The Red, Green, and Blue parameters determine the color of the first line that is drawn. If all are set to 0, then the line will be black. If all are set to 255, then the line will be white (which will not appear against a white background).
  • X and Y values: X1 and Y1 are the horizontal and vertical axes of the first point, X2 and Y2 are for the second point in the line, and X3 and Y3 are the third point.
    If you only want one line to be drawn, then set X3 and Y3 to "n/a".


Random Values

You may set the value of any 'Start' parameter to "Rnd", which will cause a Random value to be used each time a new line is drawn. Therefore, even if you don't select any 'End' parameters, the [# of Lines] parameter will select how many different lines are drawn.

You may use the 3_Curve.txt sample file to experiment with this feature, by changing any of the 'Start' X or Y parameters to "Rnd", and selecting a [# of Lines] value greater than 1.
If you also change the Red, Green, or Blue parameters to "Rnd", then each line will have a different color.


Morphing

Morphing is the process of changing smoothly from one image to another by small gradual steps.

The parameters to the right of the End heading (the dropdown boxes with a green background) determine the last line that is drawn.

To demonstrate this, open the 4_TenLines.txt sample file. The Start Red is 0, and the End Red is 255, which causes the 10 lines to gradually change from black to red.
Start X1 is 0%, and End X1 is 50%, which causes each line's starting point to gradually change from 0% (far left) to 50% (middle).

If a Start parameter is set to "Rnd", then the corresponding End parameter is automatically set to "n/a".


Open and Save Files

Click [Open] to load the parameters from a text file that had been previously saved.

Click [Save] to save the current parameters to a text file.

To share your parameters with other users, you can provide the characters that are contained within the text file that was Saved. The recipient can then save those characters to a text file (using Notepad, for example).


Export Image

Before Exporting an Image, first select the Export Size using the dropdown boxes at the top of the screen. Since the location parameters use percentages instead of absolute values, the image will be rendered with full resolution for any Export Size. Therefore, a larger Export Size will produce a larger file size.

If Show Export Size is checked, then the image will be displayed using the selected Export Size. If the Export Size is larger than your screen, then scroll bars will be shown.

The image may be Exported to the following image file types:
  • Png (.png): This is the only file type that supports transparency. For all other file types, transparent pixels will appear as black.
  • Jpg (.jpg)
  • Gif (.gif)
  • Bmp (.bmp): This file type produces very large file sizes.
  • Tiff (.tiff)