An ephemera, visualised.
All things considered, I’m happy with the end result. Things have been kept abstract; as is my preference (it helps that coding lends itself to this ethos too). I did try slightly fancier things such as 3D (it’s disabled in the submitted sketch) and colour, but I felt they detracted from my core concept; that is the generation and manipulation of forms based purely on sound. To properly utilise such supplementary elements would require a great deal more skill on my part; at current I’m much more content with elemental abstraction. That said, I’m very happy with the complexity and modularity of my code and the mechanics behind what it actually does.
OpenProcessing link: http://www.openprocessing.org/sketch/75939 (that doesn’t seem to be working :/).
In lieu of that, here’s a rough video:
Hmm. Now that I’ve got 3D working, I’m not happy with the resultant aesthetic. It works okay when the forms have some intrinsic mass:
But for delicate shapes like the one’s I’m making, the use of real 3D together with the existing 3D illusion created with the overlapping lines seems to cloud things.
I think I’ll stick with 2D; making a convincing step to 3D doesn’t look feasible at this stage.
Current code progress. Getting minim to work the way I want it is becoming a real pain.
Krishna’s doing his best to teach me arrays and such. All these nested things inside other nested things are really making my brain hurt.
Solidifying an ephemera
The idea behind this project is to generate unique, physical 3D forms based on a typically transient experience - sound. A user’s voice is first interpreted as a sound wave in Processing. Data is selectively picked from the wave, where it is abstracted and modified, then used to generate the unique 3D polygonal forms. Ultimately, the goal would be that these forms could be 3D printed.
The project draws inspiration not only from a fascination with abstraction and minimalism. but also from previous exploration into simplifying real organic forms.
The colour palette is deliberately minimal, in order to maintain focus on the form, structure and composition.
Similarly, the user interaction is extremely simple. The user is able to infinitely produce 3D forms and explore the relationship between their auditory space and the physical realm. Fun!
Aside from the code, some design aspects I’d like to explore are:
- how the waveform is interpreted in 3D space - what is the extent of user control?
- how are multiple waveforms handled = do they modify the initial form, or do they create new ones?
This is the essence of my code. The square responds purely to microphone input. I’ve had success with 3D forms - the reason for the square in my code is that I’m still working with getting more interesting data from minim’s lineIn - both within a wave and at a particular point on the wave over time. That will ultimately allow for much more interesting forms to be generated.
Below is the storyboard, showing how sounds are translated into forms. I’m planning to achieve the same aesthetic in Processing.