Bromande Animated Fractal Art

I have uploaded a new short 1080p video it’s an animation of a one of my new artworks. Because 1080p video streaming still doesn’t seem to go without stuttering for most machines, it’s best to download it first and view it from local HD. You need to watch it on YouTube (click YouTube logo) for HD, although for most machines the best playback quality seems to be from Vimeo.

Download (720p):

Here are the new images of the Bromande set, as you can see these are more abstract and a bit different from my previous work. They are also available in my webstore. Also these are the first batch of my work which are available in the largest print size possible 78″ x 52″ (2 mtr x 1,3 mtr).

Bromande Paintriver FlowBromande Decayfruit BirdBromande Saucerturtle 2Bromande Saucerturtle Blue 2Bromande Saucerturtle 1Bromande Saucerturtle Blue 1
Bromande Saucerturtle Blue 3Bromande Red NeondiscBromande MelonscreenBromande RasterlightBromande Green RoofBromande Evesheen
Colorific Knee 2Colorific Knee 1Bromande Green AttractionBromande Shock PortraitBromande Shock SensesBromande Sacred Rocks
Bromande MirrorBromande Lotuspond ViewBromande Lotuspond LeavesBromande Lotuspond ColoursBromande YellowburstBromande Dove Overview
Bromande Dove ViewBromande DoveBromande DoublicityBromande DiscmatterBromande Decayfruit WallBromande Decayfruit Wall Hanger
Bromande Decayfruit Wall DetailBromande Decayfruit SelectionBromande Decayfruit Object StudyBromande Decayfruit ObjectBromande Decayfruit GreensBromande Decayfruit Checker


Fractal jelly bears in plasma

Scientists discovered something pretty amazing recently and it was completely by accident. What started out as a practical joke in the laboratory may very well turn out to have changed mankind’s perception of what constitutes as life for good.

The scientists at MIT’s Plasma laboratory were in between experiments right after Christmas of 2009 and had some free time before lunch to try out some of their own experiments with the (highly experimental) Plasma Vapormass SpectroScanner (PVSS) before the equipment would be tied up in again in the new year (2010). The PVSS is highly sophisticated equipment that enables scientists to image the inside of a plasma chamber.

What started as a joke
One of the students had brought some jelly bears (a popular type of candy) and shared it on the desk with the rest of the people in the lab and jokingly said “put this into your plasma chamber”. After the initial amusement of the remark, everybody laughed even more when the suggestion was actually carried out and some jelly bears were placed in the plasma chamber. To everyone’s amazement some of the jelly bears managed to retain their form after their energy level was raised to attain plasma state. More jelly bears were added until much of the plasma chamber was filled with a mix of molten jelly bears and whole jelly bears in plasma state. The experiment was left to run during lunch, after which they returned to find something incredible appeared to be taking place in the plasma chamber.

Fractal Form
Much to their surprise the jelly bears were still there and it was because they where actually reforming in a process which someone described as “fractal form replication”. It was agreed that something was making the jelly bears retake shape in what seemed to resemble some sort of fractal enabled process. The scientists decided to continue studying the process in the last days before the new year and it was during these few days they observed even stranger things.

…. but not as we know it
The following days the jelly bears appeared to be coming alive, displaying various behavior characteristics and even forming what seemed to be communities. On the first day, one of the first behaviors this jelly bear community displayed were active attempts to order the various plasma substances within the chamber. Most jelly bears seemed to prosper in an orange colored substance and gathered there into colonies from which a green colored substance was expelled by the entire colony, resulting in orange patches (the colonies) surrounded by green (the expelled substances).


The next day (the first full day of observations) some of the jelly bears started to develop certain skills, some seemed to have a defensive nature and can be described as soldiers, much like the soldier ants in ant colonies. The soldier jelly bears had developed some sort of projecting force with which they were able to diminish the various forms in the green colored substances and expel them from the jelly bear colonies. Others seems to have more nurturing skills which were remarkably similar to those seen in worker ants.


On the second day of observations, the colonies seemed to prosper but there were no new specialized skills. Instead now all the jelly bears had developed some sort of communicative skill, which was coined by one of the staff from an adjacent laboratory, as being some sort of psychic link. These psychic links would light up with a blue color whenever the jelly bears communicated new information, but were otherwise mostly invisible.

The new breed

On the third day, a new but very rare breed of jelly bears had emerged. This new breed of jelly bears were able to control the others were even able to change the function of other jelly bears. The new breed also displayed a distinctive glow which made them very different in appearance when compared to the others. They also seemed to be able to heal, first only themselves and then later also other jelly bears and at that point the scientists decided to call this group the “divinities”. Whenever it was deemed necessary to do so, the divinities would change the behavior of others by means of their psychic link and also distributed health more equally throughout, this resulted in even more activity within the colonies.

This is the end of the beginning
Unfortunately on the morning of thefourth day it was found that due to a power failure the experiment had stopped during the previous night and all activity had ceased. All jelly bears had vanished and only a sugary sludge remained in the plasma chamber. This sludge no longer responded to elevated energy levels and no new jelly bears seemed to retain it’s form in it anymore. Sadly the plasma chamber had to be cleaned for the coming experiments in the new year and the schedule did not allow for any renewed attempts yet. And because no official experiments were scheduled at the time, the partly documented observations that were made were not enough to be granted time for new experiments on the PVSS equipment. So for now we will have to wait for confirmation of all the observations made during these last days of 2009. But to some of us, even without a repeat of the experiments, the concept of what life is has already changed for good. Perhaps soon it will change for you too.

– Prof. Anonymazing


GLfract II Realtime 3D fractals

Here’s one of those little windows programs that doesn’t serve much purpose other than that it’s fun to play around with. GLfract II uses your video card to render heightmapped fractals in realtime in OpenGL. You can watch my video demo of it on Youtube.


Heightmapping doesn’t produce real 3D fractals but merely uses the colour information of the 2D (flat) images to produce a 3D representation of them, which basically tends to look like mountains an valleys. It is interesting though to see how easily a fractal can look like nature by combining such simple imaging techniques. Heightmapping is not a new imaging technique, it was for instance already used in old fractal software like Fractint and it’s still often used to make 3D landscapes. The latest software more advanced software for producing 3D landscape is Terragen 2.

Using GLfract II

Usage of GLfract II is fairly straightforward since there are only a few options to work with. Basically you just start the program and start clicking using the mouse and holding down the “Control” button on the keyboard. You can choose various different fractals (keyboard 1 to 5) and various render methods (L & P button). By invoking the command window (tab button) you can load and save files and do some settings.

For instance you can increase the complexity of the model with the “res number x number” command, but do not set the complexity too high or your computer will look like it’s stalled (but it won’t be because it’s merely rendering the image in the resolution you have set and won’t update the screen anymore untill it’s finished). I used 2048 x 2048 on my Geforce 8600GT, which is about as much as needed is for some highres exploration, the default setting is 400 x 400. Keep in mind that the overall performance also depends on the windows size. If you have a really fast video card you might want to increase the number of iterations (this increases the complexity of the fractal from which the 3D model is made), of course the higher the iterations setting the more CPU time it will cost. On complex models changing the number of iterations doesn’t show any more significant results.

Supposedly it is possible to load .map files, which are colour settings as it’s used in Fractint, but i didn’t have much success in loading my own maps, so i think that function doesn’t quite work right. But by loading the example files you can get some colours in there. All the commands available are listed in the readme so it’s wise to open that aswell when you run the program.


You don’t need a very fast 3D card to use it, i have tested it on a Nvidia Geforce 8600GT and an onboard Nvidia Geforce 6200  and both worked fine. However the faster the graphics card the more detailed you can make the 3D object using the “res” setting. You will of course need a fast CPU for calculating the fractals. Because this is how the program works: it uses your CPU to generate the fractal and then the heightmapped image which produces the 3D model which is then uploaded to the GPU (using OpenGL) and which point you can move the object around with further need of the CPU. It would be really cool if one day the program would be further developed to use the GPU for the fractal calculations using OpenCL (that’s a C not a G) or NVidia’s CUDA. I’m sure much  GPU accelerated fractal software will be coming out way in the near future though.

Video Demo

I have made a HD video in 720p of me just fiddling about with the software so you can see what it’s about, you’ll need to watch it on Youtube to see it in HD. The music is an old favorite of mine it’s an old amiga mod, the dance track is composed by Sqd, it’s an instrumental remix of the 1992 hit “Captain Hollywood Project” – “More And More” (Stone Cold-Cut Edit by Sqd). It seems the track has been released yet again in 2009, watch video. The music is available for free from the Amiga Music Preservation website for instance. You do need special software to playback mod tunes though, like Deliplayer or XMplay (which are the most accurate) or the DUMB plugin for Foobar 2000 (best quality) or the BASS plugin for Winamp.

Watch in 720p HD on Youtube:

Sidenote: Deliplayer was one of the most widely used software for playing back tracker music (called modules or mods) on the Amiga in the heyday of the popularity of the Amiga computer. Later a windows version was released, it was claimed to be the most accurate player for all the various tracker formats and indeed was regarded as such, while the software is now no longer developed or supported it is still the most accurate software for playing back tracker music on windows computers because no software that surpassed it has ever been produced.

The only software that remains that still is able to playback most tracker formats fairly accurate is XMplay. Much less accurate but also usable for a wide range of tracker formats are the DUMB plugin for Foobar 2000 and the BASS plugin for Winamp.

Links: (terragen 2) (GLfract II demo) (More and More 2009) (More and More 1992) (Sqd’s mods on Amiga Music Preservation) (XMplay & BASS plugin) (DUMB plugin)

Cells Go Fractal

An article was published in the scientific magazine “Nature” called “Cells go fractal” on September 4th. The article reported on the findings of research done at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) as it was published at the ‘2009 European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) conference’ held in Amsterdam.

Experiments done by Sebastien Huet and Aurélien Bancaud in a research group led by Jan Ellenberg at the EMBL in Heidelberg, Germany, tracked the movement of molecules within cells, this was then compared the pattern of movement against mathematical models. It was found that, large molecules moved according to the same rules as small molecules, suggesting that their environment was therefor fractal.

The researches were able to track the behaviour of the cells by means of injecting live mouse cells in a lab dish with fluorescent molecules. They were able to track the molecules with this special type of imaging in microbiology called fluorescence microsopy. The study focused on how cells can keep track of gene activity or gene expression through chromatins in the cell nucleus.  Basically this process takes place to ensure the right molecules interact with each other at the right time and in the right place in the cells. Huet and Bancaud found that the molecules moved as if they were having to navigate obstacles (but there are no barriers, as they exist in other parts of the cell) to navigate around in the cell nucleus. When the team looked at the behaviour of different sized molecules, they saw that large molecules were obstructed to the same degree as small molecules in the cell nucleus.


A cell displays chromatin (green) and a molecule used for tracking (red).It was furthermore discovered by studying how proteins, bound to different kinds of chromatin (namely Euchromatin and Heterochromatin), moved around in the cells and found that the different types of chromatin were fractal in different ways. Meaning molecules behaved differently for each type of chromatin with its own distinct fractal characteristics. All this information could be used to learn exactly how cells use a fractal structure to change the behaviour of proteins to change particular DNA sequences and skip whole other parts of the DNA sequence. It’s also expected that with insight into these fractal structures researches can learn how to better target certain areas of DNA for study or perhaps in the future even for new types of treatment for disease.



Fractal Origami

Yes that’s right, believe it or not some folks have so much time to spare while rendering fractals, they resort to even more inventive ways to spend their precious fractaltime. Since fractals are all about repetitive forms and the japanese art of Origami is all about repetitive folds, it’s only natural that the two disciplines meet up to form a paper “Menger sponge“, the first 3 dimensional fractal ever discovered.

Mathematical Origins

A “Menger sponge” is mathematical shape first described (or discovered) by Karl Menger in 1928. Basically it’s a cube that repeats its form within itself. It is the 3D form of the 2D mathematical shape called “Sierpinski carpet“, first described by Wacław Sierpiński in 1916. And the “Sierpinski Carpet” in turn is the 2D form of the 1D mathematical shapes of repeating points on a single line called the “Cantor set“, first described by Georg Cantor in 1883. There is a nice article on the history of the “Menger Sponge” and you can read up on just about everything about Karl Menger on the website of the Illinois Institue of Technology (ITT).

Wacław Franciszek SierpińskiKarl Menger

Fractals in paper

In 2006 a level 3 “Menger sponge” made entirely out of business cards made by Dr. Jeannine Mosely was exhibited by the Institute For Figuring (IFF), an organization dedicated to the promotion of “the poetic and aesthetic dimensions of science, mathematics and the technical arts”. More on the IFF on Wikipedia and you can read all about the business card Menger sponge exhibition on the IFF hosted website, which also contains a tutorial on how to make your own and has also has some great other links. And you can see more photos of the contruction of the cube on Flickr or read up on the history of the “Menger Sponge” up to the modern business card version.

More Origami (Morigami?)

Nicholas Rougeux web developer and artist, after being inspired by seeing the exhibition, also made some origami Menger sponges and also made an attempt at a level 4 Menger sponge, an idea which he gave up on in 2009, probably after realizing the amount of work involved no doubt. But still being bitten by the folding bug he is currently attempting a mini Post-It level 3 Menger sponge, you can watch the progress on Flickr. He also wrote a great online tutorial and even dedicated an entire website called “Mengermania” to it with lots of links on the subject.

Another website called “Fractigami” also has some nice photos of Menger sponges as they are being built and you can even buy your own pre-built paper Menger sponge. And Dutchpapergirl posted a nice video (look no hands) of her origami Menger sponge on Youtube and on her website.

“We are the Borigami, resistance to folding is futile” (Saquedon, 2009)

Links:ław_Sierpiński (Nicholas Rougeux) (Links)

Public fractal torrents

Clashcluster4logoI just started a new fractal group on a new torrent tracker, called, a new public tracker that combines social networking communities with torrents and videosharing. It allows users to upload material with Creative Commons license or any other type of content in private (protected with SSL) or public groups. The new tracker is made by the same people behind the very popular public torrent tracker site

Here’s the link to the group: focuses on the distribution of legal material, but if no content is found currently it also displays the search results from

If you like fractals, or have some fractal material and would like to help out with making a legal public collection of fractal content, or if you just would like to meet up with other people interested in fractals please sign up now and join the group. Signup is currently still free but there currently is a limit to the number of invitations, it’s likely you will need an invitation code for signups later so they can limit the flow of new members. Once signed up you can ofcourse send invitations to your friends. There isn’t much content up there yet, but things usually turn out that this changes rather quickly.

You can read more about the site and the current invitation limitations on this article on Torrentfreak, or read the BBC News article containing a video interview with Isohunt founder Gary Fung. Or see the announcement on Isohunt.

Links: (signup)

Fractal Food Romanesco

John Walker wrote a great article called “Fractal Food, Self-Similarity on the supermarket shelf” about fractals in nature in general and specifically one of the most recognizable fractal shapes in nature, namely the shape of the “Romanesco (broccoli)“. The article explains the basics on how the shape can be replicated with a mathematical system called “Cellular Automata” and it also has some great photos.

Scientific Paper

Sang-Hoon Kim wrote a related scientific paper called “Fractal dimensions of a green broccoli and a white cauliflower” on the subject in 2004 at the Mokpo National Maritime University (MNMU) in Korea.


3D Broccoli

Aleksandar Rodic made a great 3D animation using a technique called procedural modeling to build the similar mathematical shapes of the Romanesco. He even wrote an article on how the 3D broccoli animation was made.