I’ve been having a bit of a play with Quartz Composer since I haven’t had a chance to do much in the way of computational arts since uni finished last semester. In doing so, I came up with this, which as you can see became the background of the current website design!
I decided to start off with a halo generator to create a similar effect to a lens flare which I then built on with audio input from the MacBook Pro’s built-in microphone to make it a more interesting effect. Adding in a replicate in space which chances direction over 8 replications gives it the appearance of movement amongst itself, again making it a bit more interesting, but what I really like about this is that it turns it into a colourful iris, which I really quite like.
When the audio is fairly quiet, the iris is small and fades in and out. As the audio volume increases, the iris grows and changes colour.
It can be downloaded here, you are welcome to have a look and play around with it as you like! Just remember, like everything else on this website, it is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.5 Australia License. So anything you do with it must attribute me as the original artist, me, be shared under a share alike license and cannot be used commercially.
This has been done in Quartz Composer for OS X 10.5 Leopard, so it may not work correctly on Tiger. I don’t think I’ve used anything that was new in Leopard, but I’m not sure. So if you are using Tiger, good luck!
I’ve rendered a video which is now up on YouTube to give you an idea of how it looks.
The screen recording here has taken the mic input and used it for the animation. The song used in this recording is “Deflated & Alone (GE Abondoned mix)” by George_Ellinas from http://ccmixter.org/files/George_Ellinas/19174 under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
At the moment, it is great for a little while, but unless the music is constantly changing, the interest is lost as it begins to show similar patterns repeating themselves. If you have a look at the Quartz Composition, it’s a pretty simple one really, so I’m sure there is plenty more I can do with it yet to make it that bit more interesting for a bit longer!