Monthly Archives: September 2011


I love software reuse. I decided that mandalas would be fun, so I took the shape library I use for making various sorts of patterns out of, and added some code for making concentric circles of them, thanked the stars that I had gone to a great deal of trouble to add a feature for drawing the shapes in arbitrary four- sided polygons when I only needed to draw them in rectangles, and got a mandala program.

Here’s one, with some of its pattern brethren added to it via Photoshop:

Pay no attention to the file name, those rows are concentric, not spiral.


Variations on a Theme

Small changes make big differences.

Here’s a design (your average cleaned up, reflected, colored, and generally played with doodle) which has been merged with a pattern:

symmetrical flora design

Hearts and flowers, kind of.

And here’s the same image, with the same pattern, with two changes to layer parameters:

A few parameter changes

Here’s a change to the pattern it’s merged with:

wild heart/floral image, blue geometrics

Different pattern, different vibe

And now for something calmer:

Another change to the edges, the colors, and the pattern

Elevating Doodles

Here’s an elevated doodle:

ornate symmetrical design

Pen and ink, Photoshop, Processing...

This one I’m pretty sure was on the airplane on the way to Tucson. So you can see how far it came from its origins, here’s a before and after pair (this one is actually less post-processed in Photoshop).

red doodle, filling a quarter of a square


(This is actually very slightly after; the before for the top image was drawn on the same piece of paper and has already been blanked out.)

rainbow two-mirror symmetric design


Tucson Zoo

The zoo was uncrowded (that’s what you get on a Monday that’s a school day and is projecting record high temperatures) but a combination of heat-enduced lassitude and Opal’s burning desire to move ever onwards meant I didn’t get all that many pictures anyway. However, here are three I liked:

scraggly black bird standing on wood at the edge of water

Grackle; not a zoo exhibit but another visitor. This one was a bit less ragged than most.

iridescent feathers and plain black and white ones

A section from the back of a peacock.

outspread brown feathers and fluffThat last is an example of one of Opal’s favorite genres; the bird butt picture. Yes, some people would think a picture of a bird that included only the butt was an error (except in a few cases of spectacular tails), but not Opal.

Not That Desert

While many of my friends were packing up and driving to camp in the desert, I went to a different desert. I don’t happily do camping or crowds, so 3 cats and 4 people in an actual house (with actual plumbing)  is more my style than Burning Man. Then I made up for this temporary burst of sanity by Going Outside repeatedly.

To start with, from Sunday, a scenic view:

Desert scrub and mountains

The view from outside the entrance to Colossal Cave

Yes, we went up a mountain in order to go down into the cave.

And Opal learning how to drive a team:

Opal and a cowboy on the seat of a wagon, working the reins

Opal learning how to hold the reins to drive a wagon team

Opal and Jeanne and I were the only takers for the wagon ride, so we got a customized discussion (particularly after Opal got offended when the cowboy’s standard spiel included accusing her of being the ghost of the child who burned down the hotel where the the mail coaches stopped).  The horses, Ned and Ted, knew gee from haw better than Opal knew right from left, but then again I suppose they have fewer things to keep track of.