Seldom do I make a new years resolution. But when I do, keeping one is even more of a rarity. I’m happy to report that in the year of 2012 I kept a promise to myself. My 2012 New Years Resolution was:
In 2012 I will sell a piece of art to a complete stranger.
When I made this promise to myself, I was envisioning buying screen-printing equipment, or setting up a home studio to finally enter in some small town art festival. I’d stay up late working after the kids went to bed. I’d sell prints or posters for $20 bucks a pop.
That’s not what happened.
I had made it a couple months without giving these words a second thought (and absolutely NO action). Then one day I got a call from a complete stranger. This conversation started out kind of like a marketing cold call. I was very short with this guy, but seconds before hanging up he mentioned this blog, “I saw some of those topo animals on your blog.”
I’m glad I didn’t hang up. The guy on the other end of the phone turned out to be an entrepreneur looking for art to put in his new hotel in Lake Tahoe! I was floored! I had sworn off freelance projects, but it was impossible to pass on something like this. And it just so happened that I was planning my first trip to Tahoe in a couple months.
The trip turned out to be amazing. Tahoe is THE most beautiful place I’ve ever been. Cate and I were pretty cash strapped at the time, but that trip was unforgettable and good evidence that experience trumps material goods. We even got to tour the hotel! Basecamp Hotels was in the final stages of construction. The place was buzzing with smells of paint and drywall. The lobby was occasionally lit by the soft glowing sparks of a welder putting together the bar. The front of the house people were all scrambling too. Everyone was in a scurry to put the final touches on this funky little hostel-like meeting place designed for ski-bums. I was excited to be part of it. A sign painter was going to come in and paint my design about a week after our trip. As I looked around I wondered where it was going to end up. Hallway? Lobby? Closet?
How did this happen? Did the power locked inside of some desert crystal in Nevada lead to the universe granting my 2012 resolution? I’m not sure. But I’m happy that my piddling around with digital stuff here on JacobMake, and making it public and searchable, lead to something as fun as this.
Here are some pics of the California Topo Bear in the master suite of Basecamp Hotels in Lake Tahoe.
Now…what will my resolution be for 2013?
This whole thing started with an idea for a Turducken Illustration and turned into a full blown info-graphic for Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving!
And it was promoted as a Visual.ly staff pic! http://visual.ly/anatomy-turducken
This is my (late) entry for the Animation Sequence Project.
Tags:Animation·Animation Sequence Project·Motion
Look what I found while cleaning up my drafts folder. It’s some exploratory stuff from the Bison project. If I remember right, each square was rotating based on how luminous the pixel underneath it was.
This image seems to be popular on the internets. It was the output of a generative experiment in Flash a few years ago.
I recently got a call from a production company that wanted to use the image with their logo. The Flash files are long gone so I relearned how to draw it with Processing! The original Flash files used a few shapes I made in the library and positioned them with some borrowed code.
In this most recent iteration it’s 100% drawn with code. I don’t normally work this way, but it was a fun challenge. And it was interesting to tweak the variables to get different results.
I hope Nest Features does some great things in the future
The project changed a little bit. Instead of doing a full scale wall that is integrated into the room we’ll be doing something that looks more like an actual map.
Cate already had a trip planned to Tahoe this spring. So we’ll be able to check out the hotel just a few weeks before they open. Should be awesome.
So I was pleasantly surprised to get a message from Bascamp Hotels in South Lake Tahoe a few weeks ago. They liked some were interested in collaborating after seeing some previous work on the blog and wanted to see if we could work together to create some interior visuals. Their logo incorporates the California bear.
This kid of reminds me of work that n-e-r-v-o-u-s is doing, but this stuff is much more simple.
This one shows the bear silhouetted in what looks like a crater lake:
This one Show more of a “finger lakes” or man made lake. The bear is less obvious in this image.
Pics borrowed from Dwell Magazine.
So I’ve made it to a stopping point with the Trout Project. It’s not as developed as I’d liked but I’m trying to get into the habit if forcing not fully developed content out there. It’s part of Harnessing the Abudance which I’m trying to adopt.
The “Trout Project” aims to emulate field guide illustration with dynamic colors and shapes. The data gets pulled from the colorlovers website. Here is a quick video and some stills.
There it is. For what’s it’s worth here is a laundry list of what I had hoped to accomplish or may revist:
- Generative Texture — I wanted one big generative blob across the top of the fish that could be different each time based on color data. Getting a generative pattern like ~this~ would’ve been cool but I had problems figuring out how to make the masking work to fit the fish body.
- Generated Small Dots — Would’ve been nice to have a more organic arrangement of the smaller dots. The original plan was to build out method algorithm for spacing them out organically w/out overlapping…but I got bored and frustrated.
- Brush Strokes — I briefly played with the idea of doing brush strokes based on existing bitmap information like this. .WAAAY over my head right now.
- Letter Spacing — There is very limited typographic support in Processing. The idea, I suppose, is that you can build your own. I fooled around with splitting a string up to get more font spacing but ended up abandoning it.
- Scientific Name Generator — Generate a string based on the title of the graphic with a bunch of Latin mixed in.
What I’ve learned is that Processing is really geared towards lower level stuff and I was trying to accomplish too much on my first try. I should’ve stuck to a project where I was drawing primitives. Which is likely what I’ll tackle next.
The color library was really fun to play with and the Processing community seems to be a great bunch of folks:)
I’ve been pecking away at my first real Processing experiment. The application will build an image of a Trout from assets I created and it will pull colors from the ColorLovers API to create different looking fish. I’m using this handy little library. I want the end result to look something like a field guide painting. Here is a work-in-progress.
I must say I’m really missing my trusty Flash Player and AS3. Up until now I’ve had to resist the temptation to run back to Eclipse or FDT to dive back into the familiar and warm waters of the Graphics API. Flash does a lot of the heavy lifting when managing visual display elements.
Things I miss from Flash:
- A display list!!!
- Blend mode support! thing.blendmode = “multiply”;
- Strong types
- Font Support: Letterspacing, etc.
Things I love about Processing:
- It’s superlightweight & free!
- exit(); great for running log generative processes.
- super easy save function – save(“myimage.png”);
- all the other “close to the metal” features.
In hindsight this project may not be a perfect fit for Processing. Most people use Processing to draws millions of tiny lines based on data of some kind. My work usually has some hand drawn elements and complex masks and blend modes. This has been a fun process so far, I hope to use Processing for Data Viz in the very near future.
As for the fish; I’d like to pull in some generative elements into the patterns in, but I may abandon the project before it gets that far.
Really ugly fish parts, applying tint inside of Processing.