bumble_b – Wallpaper

Note: The high-res code seems to sort of glitch with my tape names because they won’t randomize if you just click on the image instead of pressing play again. So, I’ve now noticed that the tape names are exactly the same in these two images, but they DO randomize! 🙂

My final pattern:


Initial Sketches:

My idea was to do cards and tapes (two of my favorite things in the world), with a randomly colored square background and some random chances of variations happening.

In the end, I wound up with the square background I planned, but I made one large square for dynamics and a top and bottom border of smaller squares (with the “no TV signal” color palette). The colors randomly generate from palettes and the large square has different potential positions.

My tapes also are all randomly named with random tape sizes/positions! This worked out really well and almost exactly how I visualized it except that I couldn’t find out how to do multiple lines of text (line breaks), so I ended up only getting to choose movies with short titles.

I also used an if/else statement for the small chance of an orange Rugrats tape showing up!

For my cards, I sort of ran into trouble because placing all the different small shapes to make different card numbers was getting really time consuming, so I had to change up my concept a lot. Instead of one deck of cards with random cards showing up, I ended up with 4 different sets of cards with all ace of heart cards. To make it look a little more intentional, I made the randomly chanced card backs 4 different colors, so it will always look like 4 different sets (making the 4 ace of heart cards make more sense)!

I really like my pattern and would LOVE this wallpaper with all my favorite movie titles in my future basement. I really love clutter and having a lot of things going on, so this really fits my style. I do think my design isn’t all that interesting in its variations, though. It’s all very predictable in the element positions, really only changing colors and text. I think if I were to start over, I would focus on a more abstract design with lots of wild variations, sort of like how my background on its own looked:


bumble_b – Exercises03

1. Iteration: 7 Circles


2. Variables: A Parametric Triangle


3. Transformations + Functions: Critter


4. Nested Iteration With Functions: Repeated Motif

(VHS tapes: very subtle, but the tape on each one is randomly sized for length of film and whether it was rewinded/stopped in the middle of viewing.)


(And, alternatively):


5. Nested Iteration + Randomness Gradient: Recoding Schotter


bumble_b – Readings03

In Tyler Hobbs’s “Color in Generative Art,” I was really interested in the sorting/sequencing technique. I’m fairly new to art entirely, and I know color is one of the most difficult aspects of it. I really resonated with his ideas on sorting colors from a palette by some characteristic like hue (with some aspect of randomness still) for the program to sequence through in each new element. The technique really inspired me and gave me some new ideas.

bumble_b – Reading02

In the “10,000 Bowls of Oatmeal Problem,” we face a generator that has many mathematically unique outputs, but the outputs are so ever so slightly different (like 10,000 bowls of oatmeal where each oat is uniquely placed and rotated) that they are no longer perceived as unique to the viewer… they are all mundane, monotonous.

Kate Compton says that just achieving perceptual differentiation is important: the viewer should see the differences in your outputs. However, the more difficult achievement is perceptual uniqueness: the viewer should find each of your outputs unique and interesting.

In the oatmeal problem, even if it is possibly clear that each bowl of oatmeal is different, 10,000 bowls of oatmeal won’t all individually feel fascinating and important. We should strive to make our generators produce meaningful work, not a large quantity of work with muddied and unclear differences.

bumble_b – Valentine


I really wanted to create a color palette and make all of my hearts, the text, and the background generate different pinks, reds, and purples each time. This was definitely one of the most ambitious parts of the process because my first few attempts made it clear that repeating colors (especially a heart against the same color background) were really ugly. So, I had to create a code that would dump a color from the array every time it was used (picking out the colors for the array was a blast, by the way). That way, as it generated the fill of each shape, it would only use an unused color from the palette!!! This was super fun, and learning what each little thing meant (like i < # and i++) blew my mind.

I also really wanted to create a static image each time I pressed play rather than have it cycle new random things super quickly, which I needed to learn about and implement global variables to do.

As for the “10,000 Bowls of Oatmeal Problem,” I think I really understand the “boring” part now because though I find my color combinations to be super fun each time, the text is really repetitive and makes each output feel a little less special. If I had more time and wanted to make this a full blown generative project, I would definitely put way more phrases into my array to make each output feel unique and important, because though the colors may have been fun and different every time, the eye goes to the words and the words did not hold my attention long.