I had a Bob Ross moment this week. I’d taken a photo with the new camera lens… Let me back up a bit and put this in perspective.
The lens I use with my DSLR the most is my 18-55mm which allows me to get wide-angle but also close-up shots. It’s the workhorse of my camera bag. While I was in Washington DC with my son and family, that lens stopped working. I don’t know why. I put it away, intending to troubleshoot when I had time and equipment, got busy, stopped taking photos very often and… finally broke down and bought a replacement lens, to make a long story short. I picked it up used and very inexpensively (they are a common lens) and when it arrived I put it on the camera, walked out on the front porch, and took a photo.
Whoops. Oh, no…
I didn’t switch on the autofocus. Whew!
Off I went with some test shots that showed me the new (to me) lens was in perfect working order. Later, when I was downloading the photos into my computer (pro tip: Pay the little extra for the camera that will talk to your computer directly. Or like my brother-in-law has, one that will send web-ready shots to your phone. Downloading the card every time is a minor nuisance that means I, um, may not always remember to actually do it.) I took a look at that first initial blurry shot and had thoughts.
First thought was that it’s so nice not to be shooting in film where that would have been a relatively expensive mistake. Second thought, this lens makes nice bokeh. Third thought: I like the colors, and I could do something with this little accident, after all.
So I imported it into Apophysis as a smooth palette, and I used it to paint fractals.
To use an image – any photo, art, or what-have-you – in Apophysis as a color palette, you simply click on the lower righthand icon, the one that looks like a gradient, and then choose a jpg file. The palette you can see in the screenshot above is the photo I took. The background up there is one of the fractal pieces I was working on. I usually color as I create the underlying structure, because the coloring can highlight, or completely hide, aspects of the artwork. It’s subtle, tricksy, and very fun to work with.
I can also use the photo as color mapping for my 3D fractal art program. Hmmmm…. Wonder what that would look like? Maybe later. I have housework that needs my attention right now. In the meantime, hope you enjoy my happy little accidents as much as I enjoyed making them.