Spaghetti Bones is a celebration of my adaptation and exploration of the differential growth technique.
Differential growth has been a continuous focus of mine ever since I first learned about it back in December of 2020 (read more about my introduction to the idea here). Since I first learned about this technique, and wrote my own version based off these rules, I haven’t stopped experimenting and optimizing the algorithm, finding new ways to utilize it in my artworks. By far it is my most researched topic, and longest running experiment. Since my first release of ‘Dreams’, it has been a personal goal of mine to eventually create an entire project dedicated to this idea.
In large, this project was born through optimization experiments. Since differential growth is a physics heavy simulation, with thousands of calculations being preformed every frame, it’s easy to run out of processing power and be left with a very slow, painful to watch slideshow simulator. In order to run live in the browser at a consistently high framerate, I had to find creative solutions to a lot of issues. Many of these solutions opened new doors to further increase the complexity amd variablility of the simulation.
Every output of Spaghetti Bones is a simulation of a life-form. This life grows, ages, evolves, and dies. Its goal is to grow and fill as much space as possible. With every frame, a path is traced through the nodes that make up the life-form, and drawn on the canvas. There are rules and methodes in place that prevent these paths from overlapping, creating complex patterns, and marking each stage of its life, like rings on a tree stump. When the render is complete, the final product is a complete documentation of the life-forms life from birth to death.
In total, there are 59 variables that work together to create each output of Spaghetti Bones. The bulk of these variables go towards defining rules for how the life-form grows/ages, and how to trace a path through the nodes that make up the life-form. But living things evolve, and in Spaghetti Bones, many of these variables also evolve. Aspects like the overall size, growth rules, and even how the path is traced, often are allowed to change throughout the rendering process.
Dreams, Ecumenopolis, Spotlight, Spaghetti Bones
Spaghetti Bones marks my fourth Art Blocks release, and (almost) third year as a generative artist.
Dreams and Ecumenopolis were two very connected projects. Both used similar fundamental building blocks to create, and the idea for Ecumenopolis was born while developing Dreams. The focus of both projects was to create complexity from simple rules.
Then came Spotlight, an exploration of the use of physics to create artworks. I’ve always loved science and technology, especially physics, and one of the main things that got me interested in gen art was the ability for computers to mimic nature. Spotlight used real-life (simplified) physics to make abstract art about light reflection, refraction, and diffusion.
Now, with Spaghetti Bones, I am again chasing that connection with physics and nature. I also wanted to lean a bit harder into a common theme I have noticed in my works, which is the idea of adding ominous undertones to otherwise playful artworks.
(more to come post release)