One-a-day Challenge to Create Generative Art with Processing

Over the holiday break, I was introduced to a new form of digital making called generative art. Also referred to as algorithmic art or computer art, this type of work produces visual art in a digital format through a programming language called Processing and can be interactive, animated, or static.

Generative art is a practice where the artist “creates a process, such as a set of natural language rules, a computer program, a machine, or other procedural invention, which is then set into motion with some degree of autonomy contributing to or resulting in a completed work of art” (Wikipedia, n.d.).

SIDE NOTE: My sister got me into this. You should follow her daily drawing postings from @_madsquirrel on Twitter.

I’m reading Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers, by Casey Reas and Ben Fry, students led by John Maeda, published in 2014 by the MIT Press. The book is written well; it is primarily a textbook, a good resource text with a lot of exercises and practice code. It has proved to be incredibly helpful for understanding basic and intermediate concepts of the processing language. And, although, I have some background in coding already (python, html/css, and some javascript), I think it is a good beginner resource for those who may have little to no experience in programming languages.

You can download the free software from the website here to set up your working environment:

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