May ’06 Installment: Nuclear Guardian

The exclusion zone around the Chernobyl nuclear power station is teeming with life. As humans were evacuated from the area 20 years ago, animals moved in. Existing populations multiplied and species not seen for decades, such as the lynx and eagle owl, began to return.

"Nuclear Guardian" is inspired by a heart-breaking story of how animal life has started to return to the area that was once irradiated by the Chernobyl nuclear meltdown.

The sound ambience is courtesy of laurent and work submitted to the Freesound Project.

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April ’05 Installment: Pointless

Totally pointless, but kinda cool looking 3d images with light streaks coming out of the wazoo, that make little or no sense.

About "Pointless"

I've always been impressed with the Photoshop skills of graphic designers Jens Karlsson & James Widegren. I'm referring to their skillfully cut together composite images containing 3d shapes and light streaks. I've found these images intriguing, impressive: how were they put together? As for the actual content of these types of images, I never gave them much thought. In fact, I always found them to be utterly pointless.

Perfect for Noscope.

So for April, I decided to explore how this was done, using what Photoshop knowledge I have accumulated over my 4 years of doing Noscope. The recipe was this:

  1. Extrapolate flat 3d shapes in a 3d app
  2. Add a light additive material
  3. Render as best possible
  4. Add colours and gradients in Photoshop
  5. Grab a lumakey such as a picture of smoke, and use that as a channel in Photoshop
  6. Use that channel as selection, and scale the smoke to fit as though it was light

Ultimately, I only made 1 picture. The big secret (except for using lumakeys, which I'll probably go in to at another time), is to spend A LOT of time just painting and nudging. This was time I didn't have this month. So I made one picture, and tinted it in 5 colours.

Yeah, so sue me. Atleast you can now pick your favourite and do some colour psychology:

  • If you pick #1, you're the serious type.
  • Number 2 is for energetic people who might like money and/or just sunlight
  • Number 3 gets picked by people who like to relax and/or need to
  • 4 is kinda like 2, but less
  • If you pick #5, you're the passionate type

Yep, I learned that in school.

Now that April is launched, I'm going to celebrate. Noscope works again (including photography) and best of all, spring is here!

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March ’05 Installment: Arboretum

A landscaped space where trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants are cultivated for scientific study, educational purposes, and to foster appreciation of plants. – Source

About Arboretum

An arboretum is, as the definition clearly states, an exhibition for study and appreciation trees. As a tree hugger, it is only fitting that I do my part in this teaching. Thus, a virtual gallery of gnarled and strange trees, possibly not of this world.

"Arboretum" holds many references to my previous installment, "Surrealisme", both in the composition and the mood. One of my mantras is: don't reinvent yourself every day. Refining a past concept is not necessarily a no-no and in all honesty it wasn't until I was done with 3 of the pictures I remembered having done something similar recently.

For the essense of this Arboretum is a universe I've been developing for quite some time. Mostly in my mind, a little bit in past archives without your knowing it and a little bit on blocks of paper. I plan to make something of this one day, suffice to say: more on that at another point.

Technically, the illustrations are composites of a 3D tree placed on a cloud/sky background. Texture and colours were added with the usual techniques. A celestial body (of sorts) was added to each image to give an off-worldly feel. Trust me, this is not some place in Sweden. And even though you can spot both our moon and Saturn, it's supposed to look like "somewhere else".

This month I will release a layered PSD (well, technically it's a TIFF, but you won't notice), that's full-size and to everyone (not only newsletter subscribers). Which one do you want?

Music

The music track is a track I've used countless times before because I love it. It's as always composed by Kate. Download tracks, and read more about her music in the installments section.

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April ’03 Installment: Chlorine

Better late than never. Enjoy this non-political update, and the excellent music—as always done by Kate. Comments, political or non-political, are as always very, very welcome in my comments section.

A tip on the music – as many of Kate's tracks, it's a full length music track, not just a generic web music loop. Listen to it for a while – the best parts are always two thirds in.

On the smaller side, I will slowly be updating the user interface on this website, to be more user friendly. As a start, I've added a new cool conformist preloader icon. With my newfound experience for monthly updated websites, I'll also be simplifying some things which wasn't used, anyway. Etc. Expect gradually changing UI, in other words.

I won't be rebooting this year – the horrible planning, and lobbyist judging of last years warbirds and light yellow backgrounds have pretty much made me want to boycott it.

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