Generative Advent 2023

I was asked to join a very exciting project - Generative Advent 2023, run by Rianna Suen and Mike Cook.

The project was, as the name suggests, a daily reveal of 25(+) unique and interesting generative pieces inspired by the festive season.

I was lucky enough to contribute two pieces!

Play it here

Day 1 - Dashing through the snow

My first piece also happened to be the first of the lot!

Inspired by something I made as a child, messing around in Clickteam's Games Factory, spawning explosions at the mouse cursor to create weird maggots that followed your movements.

I thought I'd turn that technique to something less strange, and more festive. Everything onscreen is coded, there are no image elements - just lots of painstakingly hand-coded circles and lines.

Day 17 - Descending snowflakes

My second piece definitely fit the Generative theme much more.

Using a simple algorithm to create generations of snowflakes, each unique, descended from the user's chosen progenitor. Each snowflake of a new generation is full of slight variations of their parent. Over time this creates strange inherited traits.

I love evolutionary biology, so it was fun to make something tangentially educational.

The snowflake "genes" were

  • Length of spokes
  • Radius of internal struts
  • Radius of external struts
  • Number of circles along the spokes

Some of these interacted with each other, for example, the number of spoke circles was limited by the length of the spokes, and the radius of the internal struts. Given more time, I would give them a much more needlessly complex and fascinating number of variable features.