Skip to contentKyle Macquarrie

Shiny: Additive blending with OpenGL in Processing

This sketch was inspired by a combination of things: the particle systems chapter draft from Dan Shiffman’s forthcoming Nature Of Code book influenced the additive blending aesthetic, while I got the idea of a three dimensional “colour space” from this talk from Mario Klingemann.

All that’s really going on here is the RGB/HSB values of each pixel of an image are mapped to XYZ coordinates, while the camera rotates round the centre point. Changing the mode from RGB to HSB creates a different shape from the same collection of pixels, while the low opacity and OpenGL blending create a nice glowing effect.

It’s interesting to see the connections between shades in an image- almost always a continuous spectrum without large gaps. This runs a bit slowly, just because of the number of pixels having to be drawn each frame. I’d like to try it with a film and see whether the character of the movement on screen comes through…

That’s all for now, but I have some more adventures in additive blending particles systems to show soon. Have fun!

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