Generative Design Variations

After finishing the 2D Animation and Interaction Course of Andrew Glassner this is the beginning of a new project called: ‘Generative Design Variations’. But before I start I have to share some history. During 2010 and 2011 I went through Casey Reas’s and Ben Fry’s book ‘Processing, A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists’. I did all the exercises of the book. And I also tried to make 4 different versions of each exercise. Here is the link to the first page of the 532 exercises I managed to complete:

At that same time I had sent the results to Casey Reas and on January 22, 2011 I received the following reply of Casey Reas: Thank you for the email. I’ve seen your website in the past, but I took more time with it today. I think your exercises are impressive. I started in a similar way in 2007. Programming didn’t come naturally and I didn’t have the resources that are available now. I produced many small programs to work through the basics and over time, it started to come easier. Now, it’s fluid after years of practice. You might want to look at the Generative Gestaltung site and code as a way to make a next step. Good luck and thank you for sharing your journey. I replied: Thanks for your reaction. I will follow your advice to take a look at the Generative Gestaltung site. But I will start with it when they issue their English book version.

Anyway… when I saw the impressive and very well designed ‘Generative Gestaltung’ book in 2011 at Philips Design I could not wait for the English version. So I bought the German version and started to translate it to English because I did not know when the English version would be issued. But in August 2012 I received the English version of ‘Generative Gestaltung’. And now I would like to start with doing projects from that book. I estimate at doing one project per week depending on the amount of other work I have to do. I will start with P.1.0. (page 182) and will continue as far as I can understand everything. But first I have to send the authors of the ‘Generative Design’ book an email and asked them the some questions. I was not sure if I may change the code, the variable names and the functions to make different variations of the programs and graphic output. Another thing I did not know is if I am allowed to publish the work on my website and write about the design process on this blog?

I got a reply yesterday from Julia Laub on my questions within 30 minutes. Thank you for your email. We´re glad you like our book and we’re happy to hear, how enthusiastic you are about working with generative design methods. We published the code under the creative common license. So feel free to use the code and change anything you want. We’d appreciate, if you refer to the book´s site when publishing your experiments on your site. We wish you good luck and have fun! Best, Julia for the Generative Design book team.

So I think were all set for the next step into learning to program. I will try to make as much as possible variations on the programs presented in the Generative Design book by Hartmut Bohnacker, Benedikt Gross, Julia Laub, Claudius Lazzeroni. I do not know if I will be successful because the images and the original programs in the book are already on a very high level. I just try to change as much as I am able to. This does not mean that my changes will lead to an improvement of the original code and images. My goal is to extend my basic knowledge of programming. I will try to publish weekly and my goal is to post the first variations of P.1.0 during next week.


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