micahdbolen - DeviantArt asked a rather provocative question that has been bugging me for sometime. So i post the following rant that at least scratch pads some idea's out. Although ya gotta admit if one is not careful one could write a damn book on the subject and not get anywhere. I mean what is "art" in and of itself if you deconstruct it out of its culture,genre,economics,trends, idiomatic..The you get the idea. So sticking with purely the we will define the subject of generative art as:a complex algorithm in which textures. shapes and colors gradient are largely dictated by the programming and randomness.
Dear Micahdbolen: Its a good question that I have personally struggled with.. Sometimes i feel that its cheating. I am sure there more then a few in the fractal community that might say "Tom..Your art is terrible..Just stop.." Well I can be embaressed now and then by how awsome some people are consistently at this medium and how mine is sweat,blood. tiers and dumb luck. So let me frame the question in another medium that is deceptiovely simple.. Let me take Jackson Pollock as an example. I don't feel personally one of his paintings should have ever sold for 140 million That is just crazy it just paints thrown on a canvas for god's sake..On the other hand I can tell the difference between him versus some other silly person who with pure laziness thinks there now a professional artist because they have the same materials. just going to town with splatter paint Technic? I can tell the difference because 1) I thought it sounded in principle easy so im like hey, i can do this to! Realization hits home and then followed 2)Not just anyone can do this..Mine looks like crap. How did Jack do what he did?? 3)Finally after many failure and still nothing good i came to the conclusion that most don't put any serious time to understanding the rhyme. setting the medium properly and actually using it for a decent amount of time. Anyone can use a crayon to draw a stick figure, few people could then take a hair dryer, and mix the melted wax into something insanely cool looking. Most fractal programs come with a wonderful zones and some base layers that are good looking in and of themselves. This is part because its shape mimics some serious fundamental laws about the universe and it doesn't hurt to have some genetic imperatives that says things like pi and the golden ratio are automatic wins. You seriously can draw a square a certain way and literally hands down statically speaking people will like it more then other shaped squares. Although most people have a innate talent there can be principles of design that can be learned, it can actually be a skill.
So let me be blunt. Most fractal art is shit(yes I include myself in that statement)..Its interesting, and its exciting to find new domains. I have struggled with this art for a while now. The other problem is that its new in the since that the computers needed to do the serious math wasn't there, and the control over formulas where not open box.. When Photoshop first came out anyone who could shove a lens flare onto something and it was awesome..Because no one knew any better.
There are STILL people who believe owning a certain program makes them an instant artist, they even take classes thinking, Oo if i just understand this I can push a button, and bam! Instant art. Now Photoshop is used by so many people with insanely good talent that you better put some serious work into a project, and even then people are gonna nit pick your layers without mercy. Can i tell the difference between some dude who just loaded up choatica, apo or ultra Fractal for the first time..Hell yes. Does the average person know..Probably not. As long as community allows people to just click buttons all day long like pigeons picking at seeds, just shoot graphics out of there asses at light speed we will get more of the same. I work hard at what I do because I hope one day someone will take what I do as serious art. Yes there can be happy accidents that make art, but at the end of the day, without both talent and hard work shaping the image with some consciousness, any medium of any kind will remain lifeless. Without that life there is no art. As we approach A.I. it might screw with that paradigm but for now going back to the dawn of time it still stands as s standard.