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Submitted on
May 8, 2014
Submitted with Writer


22 (who?)

What is fractal art for you?

Thu May 8, 2014, 4:27 PM
I guess i got an apology to make, beause this was not a matter i took seriously till this week, and, i guess, just got a bunch of things to re-consider. Well, better late than never :dummy:

One characteristic of fractal art is that is fairly reproduceable.

A real master with deep knowledge of fractal software can, just from looking at a piece, find out how it was made, and re-create it. It is actually amazing, and, a while ago, I followed with quite a lot of interest, the "duel" between FractalDesire and zy0rg, when they both tried - and succeeded - in reproducing each other`s artworks.

Grand bipolar by FractalDesire Corrupted by zy0rg

and then,

Twisted by zy0rg Stolen from the stealer by FractalDesire

Generous people share parameters and allow other people to tweak them or just study them and learn. For example, the longest fractal pong on deviantART, by Undead-Academy and batjorge

Alien Worlds -Pong544 by Undead-Academy Heart Attempt - Pong 555 by batjorge

But there are also sad things about all this. I do not mean art theft, but rather certain very popular universal solutions.

For example, a great and popular fractal artist releases a tutorial, with fairly precise indications of how a certain piece was created. Many people rush to try it, and not of them bother about trying to create something truly unique and personal, and rather just follow the tutorial without changing anything. Well, maybe pick a different gradient.

Scripts. To be honest, its something i also used to do when i just started fractalling (and back in 2007 or so scrpits were THE thing :blush:). Someone releases a script - or just shares cool params and people use the *make flame into script button* - and everybody starts using it. One click of mouse, and yay, you just got a cool looking flame in your favourite style. Easy, isn`t it?

All sorts of "easy things". You want your flame to look cool? No, do not worry about spending a day trying out different gradients and imaging settings. Just download a image editing software and click a button. Run a script. Follow a tutorial without adding anything and experimenting with different possibilities for hours. Or don't even bother, make your fractal software pop a random and render it.

So, this is a question to all fractal artists. What is fractal art for you? What is art for you?

Add a Comment:
AaronCazzola Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Visualisation of mathematical formulas which are created looking at the universe around us, hence i think is the visual representation of the human attempt into putting nature into numbers.

In regards of sharing params, i personally think that the fun and beauty of fractal art is the actual trial and error and that sense of controlled randomness that you get when changing params. Therefore i MUCH prefer having a discussion with somebody about formulas and then go do something unique on my own than getting the params and try to change them. I personally learn more discussing with people than studying a pre made code.

marthig Featured By Owner Jun 14, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
This is a Tantalizing proposition, "me thinks".
I believe most of us fractal artists at dA have heard or learnt about the meaning of "Fractal".

... as to  Fractal
 art ... 
 is a form of algorithmic art created by calculating fractal objects and representingthe calculation results as still images, animations, and media. Fractal art developed from themid-1980s onwards.[1] It is a genre of computer art and digital art which are part of new media art. The Julia set and Mandlebrot sets can be considered as icons of fractal art.[2]
The above is a partial definition found in my favourite dictionary on line:  

and for just Art I checked in the same dictionary:
2. a. The conscious production or arrangement of sounds, colors, forms, movements, or other elements in a manner that affects the sense of beauty, specifically the production of the beautiful in a graphic or plastic medium.

Agree that my response so far is some sort of "cheat" but as some of the well known philosophers would say (Socrates maybe ?)  before starting a discussion about something, we have to define our terms so, that's what I tried to do before explaining what FRACTAL ART means to me.

I am most sensitive to colour, love colours and specifically when they are delicately harmonized.  Same as with music I don't like "clashing" notes not more than clashing colours.  What are clashing colours and/or notes to me ?

Those that make my teeth or eyes hurt.  That is of course a very personal view which is why I am defining only what Fractal Art means to me. 

So, Fractal Art to me would be any fractal showing harmonizing colours, shapes, patterns and/or rhythms.    :heart: 

marthig Featured By Owner Jun 14, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
To the above I forgot to add an important element: original creation.  Even if derived from a tutorial or free available parameters.
Jakeukalane Featured By Owner May 31, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
As I am a writer and I can barely draw, I have seen always fractal art as a medium to express my ideas and fantasy, rather just art for art. Normally I don't use only one program for doing anything and that's why I think that I could use tutorials without a problem because the result is far away from the tutorial given.

One example of fractal use it in my works are these:

Nave interplanar dussiana by JakeukalaneNave espacial e interplanar dyssiana by JakeukalaneEl Planeta Hyyr by JakeukalaneLos Virus Interplanares by Jakeukalane

I also do pure fractals, but I try to do them original →… (this one is the first and finest chaotica fractal I ever do).
roup14 Featured By Owner May 30, 2014   Digital Artist

First time I saw the fractal art  Fall ...... created by  Gurly after few month of joining DA and I fell in love with this piece of work and became little mad about how such a beautiful image have been created. So  I searched and luckly I found Ultra fractal and with help of tutorials given by her I succeeded in making my first fractal art and also learnt about how to handle ultra fractal . Still I m learning a lot each day from other artist and the most from :iconultra-fractal-redux: group.

I also tried Apophysis and with help of tutorials given  by Lindelokse I also rendered the beautiful bloom but I never found apophysis friendly to me….It always gave me feeling of complexity. Even I also tried Fractal explorer but not able to handle it properly . I think it will take little time to master .

Ultrafractal is easy to understand and handle and being a digital artist I know how to play with layers and opacity  so ultrafractal is near to my heart more than photoshop .For me fractal art helped me to find myself what I am really from inside a free soul who is in this world to enjoy the creativity of God the Great fractal artist  .

I daily used to spend many hours in creating fractal , always try to find something interesting and new .It is not easy to copy other people works or tweak their parameter , they have their choice of color shape and patterns but I always appreciate when I find something interesting to learn which I don't know.

Fractal art creation has changed me from inside , now I don’t want to waste my time in shopping or watching tv or any other thing  . Just want to create beautiful colorful lovely fractals . Now I can say Fractal art creation is a way for me to spend colorful creative time  with myself and rising each day in love with this art.

skulkey Featured By Owner May 26, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
definition of "fractal" is easy.  what is "art" is one of those intense subjective debates...

i see a lot of people talking about having "mastery" of the medium.  i don't think that's necessary to "art".  art is an approach to the medium - to create something original and beautiful.  i don't know what i'm doing half the time, but i strive for originality and beauty in everything i do.
guagapunyaimel Featured By Owner May 21, 2014
cyberxaos Featured By Owner May 19, 2014
I don't think there is anything wrong with reproduction, and fractal art is not alone in being reproducible.  Art students who paint will reproduce the work of a master, in order to learn the techniques used by that artist. An art connoisseur will be able to tell the difference between an original and a reproduction.  

With the invention of photography, it became easy to reproduce images.  Now, in the digital age, artworks are even more fluid; artists can create derivative works without corrupting the original, and we see a lot of mashups and remixing.  It's all art.  

In my mind, the sign of a master fractal artist, is someone who has complete control over the software, to the point where their works are created with intention, a master fractal artist will have an idea, and execute that idea using the tool (or software) he or she has mastery over.  This can be taken a step further when the artist modifies the tool (or software) to allow him or her to express the idea if the tool is too limited:  see the the Faber twins, for example.  Moreover, I feel that those artists who understand the underlying fractal geometry, are those who create the works with the most intention.
Shadoweddancer Featured By Owner May 15, 2014   Digital Artist
My art didn't start with fractaling.  I've been oil and watercolor painting since middle school, and lots of photography in college.  I almost went to art school instead of becoming a biologist. I mostly gave it up when I became a mom.  It's hard enough to be a working mom.  Who has time or creative juices left over for art?

I started doing fractals in 2007 after being intrigued by a number of images posted by a friend on LiveJournal.  I'm a very busy woman and my job and volunteer organizations keep me very busy but I needed something to channel my creativity.  I still dabble in traditional art, but the materials are expensive and there is the problem of what do you do with the paintings if you don't have time to do art shows in order to sell them.  Fractaling gave me the outlet that I found I really needed.  

DA has been a great place for learning how to use the various software.  I started off with Apophysis, following various tutorials and using different scripts.  I have to admit that I learned from using scripts, but I found them generally a little bit of a letdown because I didn't want my work to look like everyone else's.  I would much rather have a tutorial because those provide a better basis for experimentation.  Unfortunately, I haven't been doing any new Apophysis lately.  I've had some real problems since I bought a new laptop working Apophysis in Windows 7 and have set that program aside for the time being because it's been too frustrating.  Besides a creative outlet, doing fractals is also a good stress release.   BTW, if anyone can help me understand why Apophysis keeps freezing up in Windows 7, I'd sure appreciate some suggestions.  Please note me.  

I started doing UF about a year later and found that I preferred that program's layering versatility.  I already had a fairly good understanding of layering in Photoshop and the layers can be merged and colored the same way.  I have gotten better with UF than Apo thanks to tutorials, and I sometimes look at other peoples parameters to gain understanding in techniques and new formulas.  I've been told I don't really have "a style".  That's okay with me.  In RL I'm a scientist so I like to experiment.  Maybe sometime I can come up with really unique combinations and it will be my turn to contribute to someone else's knowledge.  

Right now I don't have a whole lot of time for art.  I hope by July to get back to spending time doing more complex pieces and experimenting like I used to do.  Honestly, if I could make a living doing art I would.   Maybe once I retire... 

phitek Featured By Owner May 15, 2014  Professional General Artist
"Fractal" can mean many things at the moment, and for myself, democracy is no judge.

A way of describing "crinkly stuff" mathematically is one of them, according to BBM!B-) (Cool) 

A set of equations which "resemble" natural forms: a away of looking at things perhaps!

We ARE fractal art, all of us!Love 

when you see with "fractal glasses", a deeper understanding of things awaits, and a richer world unfolds.

opinion - pi = onion (i.e.; many layered)

sometimes coincidence is the rule ;)  

Can you see the wood for the trees? Ohm... Ohm... 

This is a lovely forest, lots of trees.
extra texture by phitek  

as they say in my neck of the woods;

"when a tree falls in the forest; does it make a sound?"
:-? (Confused) 
waste-and-tragedy Featured By Owner May 15, 2014
I would say fractal programs (all of them) are simply a medium like any other. I personally don't care what medium a person chooses to use in order to creatively express something, whether it be an emotional response or a bold political statement - even blue Bic ball-point pen on a napkin while having lunch at Pizza Hut can produce what is, in my opinion, art. 

I also don't care what art school teaches, art is and was always meant to be subjective. For anyone, (and I do mean anyone) to say that fractal art (or any other medium) is not art  - well that is just an outright admission of stupidity and ignorance.

For me, I began playing with many of the programs I now use as a way to be creative without the pain that I would experience while drawing or carving. I can honestly say that without the freeware and the resources and all the helpful people here, I would have left this fractal art stuff behind years ago.

Yes, I do love it...but.

What the issue seems to be here at deviantART (again, this is simply how I feel about it) is that all of this stuff called art is being put on display (in mass quantities) with the added bonus of social networking. On an enormous scale. The result: confusion and mayhem and all sorts of people wanting (and trying very hard) to be better than everyone else and feeling that they have the right to make rules where there should never be any in the first place. The ego is a powerful thing. And it's okay, they can have it. They can have their "success" or their large number of followers or likers and favers or whatevers, but at the end of the day - it doesn't mean shit.

And I just have to add something on the subject of tweaking parameters: As long as there is some effort to alter the original image and not simply "make a copy", I see no problem with using shared parameters. What it all comes down to is this: if you are going to post parameters publicly - on the fucking internet - chances are pretty good that someone might simply re-render and submit. Or maybe they'll just change the colors. Or maybe they will find something completely different and post it, but maybe they'll never give you credit. My point is, if you don't want your shit abused, don't post it on the internet. Simple. Get over yourself.

There's my two cents worth. Thanks and have a nice day.
CopperColour Featured By Owner May 15, 2014

I've used several of the fractal programmes available. I've been making fractals since 2007, first with Apophysis, then Fractal Explorer, a little Xaos for Mac, a little Mandelbulb 3D and now with Ultra Fractal, which I have found the easiest by far.

I love Apophysis fractals but I can't manage to handle the programme. I used scripts a lot in the past because I found it impossible to get much more than random flames from the programme otherwise.
You get different results each time you run a script. It's sometimes easy to tweak them but sometimes the image is destroyed when you do so.
If you want to be polite you say you used a script. It's the same when you use and tweak someone's flame.
Nowadays I find Apophysis too difficult and complex, which I regret.

Ultra Fractal was a great surprise. After a first attempt that got me nowhere I started again when Mr. Slijkerman brought out the version for Mac.
I started by using other peoples parameters and a few tutorials. I never posted the result of a tutorial without changing something and mentioning what I used. This is very rare.
I often use parameters given by generous people, as do very many other UF fractalists I know.
Mainly I use parameters I have already and I change them each time. In the end they are nothing much like what I started with. I understand what Light said. Like her I rarely start from scratch.
I really enjoy Ultra Fractal and am learning from the help offered in Ultra-Fractal-Redux.

Finally to answer your question... fractal art for me is a wonderful pastime. It helps me live pleasant creative moments when I forget worries and anxieties.
I'm an older woman. My brain can't handle difficult mathematical calculations. I do what I can and I feel I am free to do so.

It's a shame that people argue about what is mainly just a passtime, or have elitist attitudes. It's an activity that is open to people with varying skills. They are free to do what they like as long as they are polite and don't steal anything.

Sue. :)
SuicideBySafetyPin Featured By Owner May 15, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
well....."hi! my name is Light and I am addicted to fractal art" i tweak params......which i have about 50k params.....fractal art saved my life at one point.....literally!! i love chatting about fractals and tweaking params however.....pretty much nothing in my gallery is original :(
utak3r Featured By Owner May 13, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ah, you started a fire ;)

What's my point of view?
Giving the fact I myself have created quite lots of those scripts for people, I'm not against using them. It's not the point. The point is, however, what you do with the result of the script/tutorial/example params.
If you just run it, tweak some colours and voila - it's not so creative, is it? 

But starting from some script or tutorial, receiving some nice and interesting point - and from this point you start playing - even blindly, without a proper knowledge - resulting in something YOURS - then it's ok. It is yours, it is developed to your liking.
If fractals were meant only for those who have a knowledge, I wouldn't develop Apophysis nor scripts nor anything else... It's for every kind of people - yes. But if you want to call it an art, put some work in it, give it something from yourself. Work on it (or just move those damn triangles back and forth, if you don't know, what they do mean) until you're fully satisfied from the result :)  and then - call it an Art.
PhaserRave Featured By Owner May 13, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm new to making fractals, but for me the fun is in experimenting. It's a journey.
gannjondal Featured By Owner May 11, 2014
Seams that we are meanwhile discussing many topics. One could think you have found a clever way to start a discussion, :icontatasz: - ;-)

I don't know whether I have to add much. Anyhow here is my version.

For me, personally, the addiction to fractals, and math pictures did start with the first MSet prints I have seen in the late 80s.
Long time I never have thought about art or so, I just wanted to create such pictures too.
Basically it is for me the ideal way to express my own creativity:  I like maths and computers, and have never been a craftsman in any way.
Thus I see fractals as one of my major hobbies.

I think to to copy, and to vary things we see is one of our most important ways to learn.
Therefore I encourage everyone to use these methods to learn and to go deeper into an existing area.
I agree that this is most important at the very beginning, but even later it can be very useful, and be it to avoid to ossify :-)
Of course copying should happen in a honest, and polite way, and yes, I also would be able to really respect only that people who do at least try to end up in their own creations.
-- Although, I have heard that copying elements of artworks is a proven way with much of history that has been used by many professional artists :lol:
But I think the most people who seriously want to follow a certain area like fractals (as a professional artist or as a hobbyist) will come to a point where she/he wants to provide something what others see as their own.

It is true that there are certain methods, and shapes which are recycled again and again. But hey, why not? We all know that they are fascinating, and the scripts, parameters etc are easy to get (bute VERY difficult to invent).
As long as we are within the hobby area, and not need to talk about business and copyright stuff I think this is ok. The most people will either go their own way, or give up after a while.

And yes, doing tweaks and pongs are amazing and funny games.

Art. Hmm. I'm maybe not that generous and open-minded here as I should be.
I'm afraid that like it too much to define and to classify. If I say art and hobby then I want to tell about two different things (why else we should use different words) - of course with floating borders.
Creating wonderful pictures can be a great and fascinating hobby.  - Art (independent from the question of professionality) should bring
skills, creativity and a kind of intuition together, and turn them into a creation of a new, own quality.
I know that is quite old-styled ( I forgot to talk about self-presentation ;-) ) - thus you are allowed to beat me as an old coot gasp

Finally, the programs. There are indeed certain differences.

I agree with our UF addicts that it is quite difficult to 'tweak' a UF made work. At least if I see the currently most used way to use UF creating pictures is like thoroughful composing paintings.
It is not enough to tweak one layer as all layers need to match together to give a useful result.
And, of course the variety of formulas, colorings, transformations etc is MUCH larger as it can be in any program with predefined formula sets.
Years ago If have worked quite much with UF. But I have done it more or less with myself; in that times attending at communities was not that simple.
Later on I started to have a deeper look to what others do (especially here in dA). - And I was shocked. I was a newbie who stucked anywhere at UF 2 level. I had hundreds, or even thousends of own formulas etc. which I wanted to share if possible. But it was useless - the community was in another universe. At least this is what I thought.
Dear UF people, please don't be surprised if there should really be a small community. Coming from scratch to your level does need a long and steep learning curve.
If you really want to have new followers you may try to have more competitions, and samples (yay, also parameters :lol:) etc. which focus to simplicity ;-)

I have tried Apo, but I never was able to grasp the secret on how to make flowers, or any other area filling objects. Maybe also because I never had a deeper look to the scripts. Or because I simply never get a real feeling of the principles. I think tweaking is here more simple than in UF. But it could be difficult to get something really different. I think here is only a narrow border between closely related pictures and something completely useless.
You can correct me of course :-)

Finally the M3D/Mandelbulber family (I never tried Incendia etc yet).
This is for me (after that UF experiences) a bit like taking photos. Walking around with the camera, and snapping whatever I see. That's ok for me now, as I don't have the patience (and time) anymore to change formulas and layers thoroughly.
I find it quite simple to tweak in a way that I get something something related but own from parameters of other people. This is at least the case for M3D. For Mandelbulber I find it a bit more difficult.
If you like:  Especially M3D is the most social fractal software I know, and has a relatively short learning curve. Thus it's not very surprising that it has got such a quite large community although it is a quite young product (so far I remember the initial discussion on 3D fractals was 2009).

Done. It's enough for today!  :slump: 
IriaSeraph Featured By Owner May 11, 2014  Professional General Artist
The 'ease' of various techniques never bothered me-- you learn a lot about things you've never tried (or which only work in narrow parameters) by following tutorials and picking apart scripts.  As an artist I prefer differentiating one's work, of course.
The funny thing is, when I copyrighted some fractal renders (because a company wanted to do prints, and it's just stupid not to protect your work when it will be out there), I couldn't actually copyright the parameters, of course, so the render itself was the only thing I could keep from being stolen.  Anyone with basic knowledge could re-create something much like it, even nearly identical, and legally speaking that would be fine.
Casperium Featured By Owner May 10, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Fractal Art for me is an chance to explore Outer Space. Another deviant, Batoruco, may he Rest In Peace, began making artworks with Apo fractals that went beyond just a fractal, but became a scene, an underwater vista of awesome beauty. Just by using multiple fractals in a unique way, he pushed the boundaries of what Apo could create. From him I learned to do the same, except I went into Outer Space with mine and created Nebular vistas. It has been a hit, showing up on books cover, TV and in Movies. I have been making them for years and I still marvel at what comes out of such a small program with such potential. I doubt I will ever get tired of Apophysis. It is freedom to make the art I always wanted to make.
Tate27kh Featured By Owner May 10, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
My journey and experience with Fractal Art began shortly after I first joined DA.
I was trying digital art and was using PS just learning the program, I used to love to sketch with Pencil and Charcoal and my early influences were Frazetta and Boris Vallejo.
After I became disabled it became very difficult to do much by hand anymore and Digital Art was a kind of saving grace for me in many ways.
If you were to look in my Gallery you can follow my progression as I became aware of Fractal Art , I did some research and asked many many questions :)
After trying a few of the more commonly used free Fractal programs I found Incendia to be to my liking.
More so after seeing my first "Fractal Composition" from my now good Friend Xzendor7 and also works by Nic022 both outstanding Artists who freely shared knowledge with me.
I clearly had much learning ahead of me and that for me is most enjoyable because  seeing the fruit of your efforts  can be most satisfying.
I am still learning everyday, I have also been using JWildfire in many of my latest works a fine program with many subtleties that I am still discovering.
Art is a form of  Individual expression and what you put into each piece will surely be evident for all to share in and this is a beautiful part of it for me.
Each composition carries a part of me, as I am sure with anyone who takes the time and cares for what they are doing.
Fractals get criticism for the random aspect of many programs and it is the intent of the Artist who carries the responsibility to create from the Heart.
No one should look down on anyone who may be creating in earnest,  their will always be those who choose shortcuts but they in fact are cheating themselves, and who can judge an individuals intent?
tatasz mentioned:The one thing I sometimes find a bit bothersome is how things will tend to go in waves... someone finds a new method, and then everyone copies that style for a time, then something else comes along and they all rush to copy that thing..."
+100, one of the most scary things... Although i confess i usually follow the fashion =D (Big Grin)
We can say it is Inspiration and that  would be true I often get inspired from other Artists works as we all do, and we can say "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery"
But "Imitation" not to be taken as reproduce a work as it is originally, do something that makes it your own and if it is a credit issue try to give credit to the original.
Fractal Art for me is a hobby one I have grown to love and enjoy, I make no profit save for the joy of sharing my Art in hopes that others will get something out of what I felt when creating it.
Velvet--Glove Featured By Owner May 10, 2014
For me fractal art is something I do purely for my own enjoyment. I've always needed to express myself creatively and as I can't draw or paint to save my life I've had to find other outlets. Currently this expression is in fractal art. It gives me immense satisfaction and joy to create intriguing or pretty images with it. I also enjoy the work of others enormously; I think it's so cool to see artists who are proficient with other programs producing very different work to my own and I adore the variety and sophistication of fractal art found on DA these days. I find it most enjoyable and get quite a buzz out of the community as a whole. :aww:

I've repeatedly tried Apophysis (and other flame type programs) but can't grasp how it works, moving triangles around simply doesn't make any sense to me whatsoever. :confused: I've never used scripts (don't know how!) and even if I tried I really wouldn't be happy making something that everyone else is making too.

Ultra Fractal is currently my weapon of choice. I create all my works from scratch or by tweaking my own parameters to make new images. There is no such thing as a starter flame or batch function to get you going, it's just you and the naked M-set, doing battle together. There is no random function in UF to kickstart a new project, everything must be done deliberately, by hand. Maybe this is one reason why some people don't get on with UF, there's no getting around the fact that you have to work at it to get anything at all out of UF! :lmao:

Occasionally I will examine someone else's parameters but prefer not to tweak as then it doesn't feel like my own work.

I would argue with your assertion that fractal art is easily reproducible. That may be true for some programs but I don't think it's true for UF. This program has features and functions that exponentially increase the complexity of how an image is made and makes it much more difficult to copy or emulate the work of others. I am pretty experienced and skilled in the use of UF and I can tell you it's not easy to copy someone else's work, even when they have specified the formulas and colourings used. As an exercise I have tried and failed. Not only is it hard to reproduce the shapes, colour, texture and composition but each artist has their own individual style stamped onto their work as well. It's quite difficult to get a handle on something as personal as style. Ultimately it is individual style and taste that makes images more arty. Computers calculate and render the images but it's the individual's taste and vision that gives the work "soul".

Anywho, these are just a few thoughts on the subject. It's been fun to read what other people have been saying here. We have such a great community of fractalists here, don't we. :)
21citrouilles Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
At first, making fractals was like looking through a kaleidoscope viewer, become intoxicated with the infinite and striking possibilities.

I first started my fractal adventure with Apo, a program with wondrous gossamer textures. I used scripts but tweaked them enough so that the results were my own. I never tweaked params - not at home with others' works. Then all the plugins and other features arrived and I got mired in the complexity of them. :D

I also briefly used Tierazon, but was frustrated by its limits.

I struck gold with Ultra Fractal. There I could have complete control on the gradients and start from scratch, and my understanding of this program was more intuitive. I read a lot of tuts so I could understand how things worked. As I practiced and practiced, my fractals became less generic than at the beginning. It blossomed for me when I discovered fractal realism - now I'm on a roll with my fractal people. I've veered off from classic, abstract fractals, but that's where my inspiration has taken me.

To me, art and fractal art is a journey of exploration - as soon as I become comfortable with a new thing I've learned, I get a yearning to explore further, to make things more difficult to create, to achieve new depths. I need to express my sometimes hidden inner joy.

Now my fractals have so many layers that the program often bugs and crashes - I'm pushing it and I to the limits, taking my time to experiment and visit the possibilities.

I've loved reading this discussion, so interesting to find all these different yet compatible point of views.
crypticfragments Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Professional Photographer
making a fractal and creating fractal art are nowhere near the same thing
I use params from other artists as starting points, and I use scripts
however, the work I create and publish is not an exact copy of either... 

even the examples you showed above, the artwork was not "reproduced"...there are striking similarities, true, but they were framed differently, colored differently, etc
is either work any less artistic than the one that inspired it? 
fractanimation Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
Very nice journal.

I love mathematics and fractal art is mathematics for me.
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
=) indeed :love:
Annissina Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Some years ago I tried my hand at Apo and we just didn't click, so I've stuck with UltraFractal. To be honest, I wouldn't be where I am today if others didn't share their parameters. I've learned a lot thanks to them, and I always do my best to tweak their work and make it my own (by adding/removing layers, changing gradients, etc.).

I've done many, many tweaks of 1 fractal in particular, which, I believe, was made by LithMyathar and I dare say they're quite different both from her work, and from each other. Or at least considering how new I was to fractaling back then, they are. :giggle:

I haven't used parameters in quite a while now and I'm very pleased with my work at the moment. :nod: But it was thanks to those params that I used in the past that I got enough knowledge in order to work this well on my own. I'm only using textures now and then, because I have no idea how to make them myself, and I always give credit.

But I only make art for pleasure, and not often enough... I doubt I would ever be able to recreate someone's work in ANY way, let alone by just looking at it! :lol:
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
well, dunno... maybe some practice at that...
I dunno, been kind of faily, but lately getting better =D
Lady-Compassion Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I keep sneaking back here to this journal to see what everyone shares about their own fractal-making thoughts about their art!  :icononiskiplz:
0bsidianFire Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Student Digital Artist
I keep doing the same thing.
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
:la: yeah =D
AnnaKirsten Featured By Owner May 9, 2014   General Artist
Fractal art is something that goes very deep with me.  I don't have to open a fractal program to see fractals, because I see them in nature and in the universe in pictures from Hubble/NASA and so on.  They are incredibly complex and beautiful, an art created by the Master Creator.  None of it in that context is accidental as far as I'm concerned, but extremely cleverly thought out and produced by various mathematical formulae, so that they are displayed exactly for what they are intended.

I am not a mathematician - ducked the '0' levels because just attempting the subject would send me off with a horrendous migraine!!  But today I work with UF pretty much exclusively.  I couldn't possibly work on a load of figures and numerical combinations and then expect to find a picture at the end of it.  (That whole concept mystifies me! :lol:)  Whilst I do frequently look at other people's parameters in an attempt at learning new things, I don't copy them into my own work, but try to work out via the parameters, separately, how someone else arrived where they did.  I then might use some of what I've learned in a new image, but it will be definitely my own image.  I usually set out to achieve a given end, i.e. I visualise what I want to produce, then set out to produce it as best I can.  I work intuitively, and one of the things I love so much about fractal art is the amazing gradient combinations that are available.  I love light and colour, shadow-play, and on other occasions, I go totally monochromatic with maybe just one colour to offset it.  Atmosphere draws me, and I try to get a perceived atmosphere into my own work.  It's all about expressing something very deep within, and for me it is also often a spiritual exercise, in that I am trying to connect with God, or one of his attributes (love, joy, peace, etc.).

For me then, art is about expression, atmosphere, colour and light, mixing jagged forms with soft ethereal misty formations, and ultimately, if it doesn't "speak to my emotions" it is meaningless.  I look for those aspects in all forms of art, whether it be fractal or otherwise.

It saddens me that the Ultra Fractal community shrank the way it did here on dA - we lost some amazing fractal artists over the years, and I still grieve that loss.  But we do have a budding - if small - community - of newer artists who enjoy UF, and this is why I set up my :iconultra-fractal-redux: group, to try to bring refreshment, learning and inspiration into this smaller huddle of artists.

I do, however, really appreciate some of the amazing fractal art being produced with other programs and often sit feeling stunned at some of what I see.  The question "how did they create that" remains a question, though, because I just don't have time to experiment with those programs.

I think I've said enough! :lol:
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
:la: speaking of ultra fractal community, i wonder if it is possible to try bringing you people to aposhack. Despite the name, its pretty democratic and has users of pretty much anything fractal =D
AnnaKirsten Featured By Owner May 11, 2014   General Artist
Jess did suggest using the chat room at one point, but didn't take it any further.

Personally I am keen to keep the UF people together if possible! but none of us has time for a chat room in our group :(
Len1 Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
What is Fractal Art for you?
A pretty subjective question, I would expect a different answer from everyone answering. Then there's the question often asked "Are Fractals Art" another subjective question....
It's pretty much accepted, at least by the Scientific community, that Mathematics is the Universal Language...that being the case would that not make Imagery "Art" produced by Mathematics the Universal Art Form?
Both questions answered, for me anyway

I originally wasn't going to comment....and maybe I shouldn't but what the hell I can't Dance

The rest of it is pretty irrelevant to me, I love Fractals, I got into Digital Art about 10 years ago as a distraction from Chemo Therapy and Radiation Treatments  for Cancer. Took about a minute after exploring a couple of Art sites Fractals were going to be my thing, I was fascinated by them, studied them and picked up FractalExplorer and started Exploring them. From FE to Apophysis to J-Wild and my favorite of all Mandelbulb3D. I use all the tools available to me either in the program itself or Image Editing programs like Photoshop. I'm not a purist by any stretch of the imagination, I'd use a hammer if that's what it took to achieve what I wanted, I'll start from scratch or tweak my own or other peoples parameters it makes absolutely no difference to me. As far as I'm concerned using someone else's params as a starting point isn't much different than starting from scratch, the only difference being you know going in there are interesting things to explore or you wouldn't be looking in the first place. The only sin in using other peoples Params is Just copying with a change of gradient and light settings, anyone with any self respect won't do that, that and giving credit to the original, it's your Karma your fucking with not theirs if you do either of those. I always give away my params, give me credit or don't I really don't care, you'll get a blast of shit though if you just copy and I happen to see it. The fun and satisfaction is in finding something different or new, putting your particular lighting, gradient, mapping, reflections whatever makes it uniquely you and letting the Render Monster Rip. The same goes for anyone else's Fractals, I don't particularly care where they started or how they got there if they made me stop long enough to look closely and say something they have probably achieved their goal, that's the name of the game isn't it, if they do share how they got there so much the toys
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
:huggle: thank you very much for the comment =)
and yeah, i guess as long as it is not just copied :la:
lyc Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
older fractal farts on deviantart (such as myself) will remember this:


so basically, nothing has really changed... and this issue will keep coming up for another ~10 years probably.
lyc Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
hmmm, since the thumb somehow doesn't work anymore:…
SavageFrog Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
thumbs are a PM exclusive feature (that's the reason it didn't pop up)

Monkey Chasing A Coconut by MelonLogic
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
:noes: the coconut... I wasnt even around and i still heard of it :faint:
SavageFrog Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
What's the "coconut story"?
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
oh, that fractal =D people keep mentioning it all around :dummy:
SavageFrog Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Based on reading the deviation description-it seems to based on the "simplicity of certain fractals".
fraterchaos Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Back when I used Apo, I seldom used other people's params or scripts, other than trying out a couple animation scripts simply because that was the only viable way to animate in those days (if you could not write your own scripts anyway)

When I started MB3D, I did a good bit of tweaking, but I always tried to make my tweaks different from the originals, I never just changed the colors or PoV. I would always at least adjust the formula variales, and usually change at least one formula completely.

As I got better, I did less and less tweaking other people's works. Now, I will usually only tweak as part of a pong, or because one of the really amazing artists puts out something toitally new and different and I want to learn how they did it, not to copy it but just to understand the technique.

I cvan understand why peoiple tweak, especially when starting out, it's the best way to learn. The one thing I sometimes find a bit bothersome is how things will tend to go in waves... someone finds a new method, and then everyone copies that style for a time, then something else comes along and they all rush to copy that thing...

Honestly, I would say unless you're doing a pong (where everyone involved agrees to tweak) then you should probably not do more than say 10% tweaks and try to keep about 90% original, your own work from scratch... otherwise you tend to defeat the purpose (as I see it) because too much tweaking means you are NOT learning anything new.
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
"The one thing I sometimes find a bit bothersome is how things will tend to go in waves... someone finds a new method, and then everyone copies that style for a time, then something else comes along and they all rush to copy that thing..."
+100, one of the most scary things... Although i confess i usually follow the fashion =D
fraterchaos Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
it's not even so much that people are copying a treand as it is that I just get tired of seeing the same types all the time... my favorite thing about fractals is that they can surprise me so often,  so seeing a whole bunch of people suddenly doing blooms or ducks or surfs or whatever just seems counterproductive to what fractals are all about...

of course that's just my opinion
bib993 Featured By Owner May 15, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
fraterchaos Featured By Owner May 15, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
poca2hontas Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
A very interesting journal thread. Maybe being very new to fractals and admittedly rather unfamiliar with some of the terminology used around some of the fractal programmes such as MB3D, I might view things differently to some.

first of all, the question of what is art? Has always been a debate, with some traditionalists turning their noses up at abstract art, not calling it 'proper art'. I believe beauty is in the eye of the beholder and therefore what we might call art is a truly subjective thing. There can't really be a right or wrong in art but people can have opinions of it.  In my eyes all you wonderful fractalists are amazing artists and I am in awe of many of the stunning work you produce across all programmes. 

I have upmost respect for the hours some people spend on their fractal projects. I accidentally stumbled across fractals from visiting DA and fell in love as intrigued by their constant variations and abstract forms, as well as developing ways of incorporating them into manips. I never dabbled in digital art until now. I long for the day we get a more powerful pc as at the moment I tried many of the fractal prog but couldn't render properly. So I was pleased to find Frax and XaoS available on ios. Although Frax and some other programmes are definitely less complicated than many progs you folks use, sometimes effects can be similar and what ever programme we use, most important the member needs to have that artistic eye! 

DA is a wonderful forum for encouraging all of us to be creative in life, a must for a healthy spirit!
:) (Smile) keep fractalising!
tatasz Featured By Owner May 9, 2014
:dummy: thank you =)
:yay: for creativity
songsforever Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I've always expressed my art in an abstract style. I've never had a technical side to it, meaning that if I'm drawing a portrait for example, its not going to be photo-real. I've always found fractal art an easy way of expressing my creative side...among other things...
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