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December and January,  this is the end, this is the beginning. What is here is not, what is hidden is clear. Follow the shapes, listen to the letters on the string. Play with the light,  look at the shadows and answer the question:

"What is the name of the month that falls between December and January?" (Pablo Neruda, Book of Questions).


produced by: Sabrina Recoules Quang

 Visual Poetry and Generative Animation

The initial idea was inspired by the discovery of the L systems as a way to combine manipulation of characters and drawings on the computer. I was looking to interpret Pablo Neruda 's question in  a visual and playful way.

In order to make the animation interesting, I played with the number and the size of the drawings for the Sierpinski triangles and liked their art deco look. Overlapping period, background not updated,  transparency and time related variables, random variations of colours and size to have the animation a little bit different each time. The aim was to produce different "tableaux", each one with a  central character represented by different shapes: circular cells,  sea stars, sierpinskis, l-systems, letters , with random size and random apparition.  Transitions are realised by the interaction between the "characters". Overlapping their drawings in time allowed it to have an effect of breathing. I also developed a special L system, for the month December which is related to the Sierpinski- January.  Finally , I spent so much time staring at December and January that I found what is falling down between them,....and what about you?


Background is not updated.

Scene 1- Cells
I used vectors of two different circles. Their movements were obtained by updating their positions, speed and radius. Their radius are updated randomly and with noise. Their circle resolutions are randomly chosen between a very large range. The use of random instead of noise provides a ciliary beat frequency to the animation. The colours of the cells are slowly with noise moving to a pale blue

Scene 2- Stars
In the same manner, I used vectors of two different stars, giving them a ocean look by adding circles to the star function from the Creative coding course and give them random radii. The darker colour provides the ability to swipe the screen and overdraw the blue cells.

Transition between scene 1 and 2
Scene 1 is still on, while scene 2 is to allow the ciliary beat to go on and to be observed despite the stars overdrawing the cells.

Scene 3-Big Sierpinski
The Sierpinski triangles are drawn from the center. Drawing repetition over this period, gives a motion to the drawing. Their size evolves with the ofGetSeconds() function. When the scale is negative, the drawing is going in the opposite direction from the center. Again circles are added to the Sierpinski shape , their resolution evolves too and the shapes on the Sierpinski could be either square, circle, triangle , pentagon and so on...

Scene 4- Small Sierpinski
The last Sierpinski is drawn at the center of the screen. Drawing repetition over this period, gives a motion to the drawing. End of Scene 4 is saved into a file to be used at the end of the animation.

Scene 5- December
The L System representing December appears slowly by applying noise to the colour which is in a range of white.

Scene 6- Letters on the String
The characters of December and January appears. Each month has a random colour and movement. Each character has a random position.

Scene 7-Question
The quote from Pablo Neruda appears and the animation ends with the screen swiped by the image of scene 4 reloaded with a rotation movement.


References and Inspirations

Lior Ben Gai program for LKoch in Processing , Star function , template time set function, vector functions from triangle Vector, phaser and noise from Theo Papatheodorou class. Formulas for L Sierpinski in Wikipedia : Understanding how to manipulate strings : Understanding how L systems work : by Kevin Roast and D.Shiffman  L system shapes animation : Bartlett International Lecture Series: 2012-13 // Casey Reas :

Visual inspiration : Bahaus , Art deco design, Ernst Haeckel (Art and form from the ocean). Poetry : Book of Questions , Pablo Neruda.