unicornsfartpixels is an online notebook cataloguing the always expanding web development landscape & creative side of code.

January 31, 2018

2018 - Looking Forward

After the chaotic year that was 2017 I almost didn’t want to repeat this whole goal setting exercise. But when I look back on what I set out to achieve last year, I have to admit that I’m pleasantly surprised by how many of the goals I’d actually honoured, despite the tumult that tailed me through those chaotic 365 days. So maybe this goal setting thing isn’t such a terrible tradition after all. With that in mind, here’s what I hope to achieve in the coming months:

1. Fragment Shaders

As much as I loved getting my hands dirty with imported objects in three.js what I really want to use the library for is to create textures. This means learning how to use GLSL Shaders, a beautiful c-like language for creating graphics that run on the GPU that’s reputed to be quite complicated. Guys, I’m diving in. See you on the other side.

2. Noise, feedback & Conways Game of Life

These three tools/techniques kept popping up in conversations with other creatives and artists last year. Seem’s like they’re the go-to’s for creating abstract behavior in digital art, and yet I’ve rarely played around with any of them. This year I hope to experiment with each of these techniques in my creative work to better understand how versatile they really are. (sidenote: In the last month I’ve started seeing automata being applied to UI design as well! I’m curious how I’ll be able to port over my creative experiments into more corporate applications. Intrigued!)

3. Javascript

My love for Javascript runs as deep as ever. While last year I learned a lot of theory, this year I want to put more of what I’m learning into practice. I also want to create an extra section on my blog that features core Javascript and web development concepts that creative coding doesn’t always bring to the fore. And I want to start using more functional programming techniques and Es6++ syntax in my code.

4. Series Project

Zach Liberman came to Parsons Paris to talk in early December and really inspired me to keep up with posting series’ online. Two things he said in particular really stayed with me: always be iterating because the shortcuts you develop over time will become your style, and don’t be so strict about consistently posting that it kills your motivation. Like last year, I took the month of January to create a creative framework for myself, (which is why this post took so long u.u) and I’ll be posting the first tests this week. For anyone curious, I decided to go with Cellular Automata variations, first attempting to create each different version of Conway’s Game of Life, and then, my own creative reinterpretations.

5. Health

Like I said last year… because health is important and anyways, healthier body == healthier mind & a healthier mind == better creativity && better code, etc, etc… Last year I fell in love with yoga, like, officially. I’d been doing it off and on for years but guys, you can officially call my a yogi. I do it nearly every day at this point and can even do some inversions. This year I want to focus on improving my strength and incorporating more meditation into my practice. Because trying to catch up to racing thoughts is no fun. But a strong mind and body is. In other mind/body news, in France they have this thing called a ‘Cure de Magnesium’ which I’ve now done twice. I can officially say if stress, fatigue or anxiety is a thing for you (#theproblemsofourtime), with the exception of anyone with liver issues, I’d highly reccomend checking it out.