"The Best Fractal Art Ever Created"

Well, it’s an exciting neck and neck (sea)horse race over at the idreamincolor forum where the locals are busy buzzing and definitively storming the hive while answering this honey-dripping question: What Is the Best Fractal Art Ever Created?

Next week, rumor has it, members will reboot cerebrums to grok something less philosophically taxing…like: Which Is the One True Religion?

As one might imagine, there’s plenty of aesthetic wrangling and mucho diversity of opinion being displayed. So far, according to OT’s exclusive exit polls:

To everyone’s surprise, the forum moderator’s friends are doing extremely well in the balloting. So, too, and most unexpectedly, is the moderator himself.

Naturally, much of the “best” fractal art “ever created” is found exclusively at online think tanks art communities like Renderosity and DeviantArt. If you aren’t a member, well, sad to report your museum experience has suddenly gone dark, and the best fractal art ever created will remain unseen behind a shadowy scrim. Your only solution: register immediately, surf around billboard-blinking-gif undressed Poser babes, through software ads, over backslapping comment litanies, near parameter tweaking festivals, and, finally, settle and soak up all the self-similar greatness in a heavily commercialized and remediated environment.

Despite pundit predictions, Ultra Fractal images are absolutely trashing competing programs. In fact, now that I think back, I don’t remember seeing any competing programs in the listings. According to poll workers, most of the voters appeared to be UF users as well. A coincidence, no doubt — and certainly one within the statistical margin of error.

Our correspondent live at campaign headquarters reports that the Fractal Universe editors and Benoit Mandelbrot Fractal Art Contest judges are reaping major repeat lever pulls — apparently proving P. T. Barnum‘s observation that if you select yourself as one of “the most important fractal artists in the world,” there will always be suckers born every minute who will line up to proclaim you also produce the best fractal art ever created.

And this just in from the editorial desk. No doubt some of OT’s recent commenters will applaud this survey as a positive, blogging landmark in finely honed fractal art critiquing. They will argue, unquestionably, if nothing else, this symposium delivers on crucial epistemological criteria like insisting that suppositions should “spring from insight” and — more importantly for those exercising keen critical sensibilities — empirical evidence is invariably “presented in a way that will not be perceived as an attack on those at whom it is directed.”

In fact, I can feel the love all the way over here. Why it’s the penultimate Über Top Twenty OF ALL TIME!!!!




Sorry. I got a little carried away there. I had to take a short break to towel myself off on the fainting couch.

I was so pumped by all the excitement because I wanted to add my thoroughly uniterated two cents to this list of lists. But then I remembered that I could not participate since the moderator had banned me from the forum after just one post. Oh woe. If I understood what gnashing of teeth was, I’d do it.

But, fortunately, I am able to still post here at Orbit Trap — thanks to the Chinese communist overloads who allow Tim and I to front this blog as their propagandistic puppet-stooges when we aren’t kept busy in the OT sweatshop dabbing toxic paint on exported and easily breakable toys.

Even so, I present my suggestions with much sheepishness. I know my entries for the best fractal art ever created pale when compared to the dispassionately selected works being critically metastasized just around the cyber-block. Nonetheless, after considerable soul searching and generator-wringing, here are my top five picks:


And after you've explored my infinity -- eat me!



I have complex recursion -- and a warmer personality than most fractal artists!



100 Layers!!  No post-processing!!



I'm sorry.  I'm only the handiwork of God.  How can I be expected to compete with Ultra Fractal?



My dimensions were too small for the BMFAC entry requirements.


I know what you’re thinking. And you’re right. The Big Bang‘s parameter files and The Creator‘s iterations just cannot measure up.

If only they’d used Ultra Fractal instead…


Web sites for photo credits: broccoli, frost, clouds, trees, and galaxies.

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4 thoughts on “"The Best Fractal Art Ever Created"

  1. Ah! another postive contribution to the fractal art world! Thank you guys so much for all the joy and light that you spread in our community…

    “Cruelanimal” is certainly a fitting handle, Terry.

    Somehow I still don’t get all this invective about Ultra Fractal. In terms of flexibility, performance, range and options, it beats the pants off all the competition. And of course I’m still waiting for your evidence that most UF users simply recycle others’ par files. Somehow that got lost in all the mocking and insinuation, I guess. Here you have a chance to really strike a blow against your pet hate and oddly you remain silent. Missed opportunities abound here…

    Nor is your historical scholarship too keen. P.T. never uttered the phrase you attribute to him, it was his rival David Hannum, referring to Barnum’s unscrupulous exhibition of a fake Cardiff Giant. Hannum was exhibiting the real Cardiff Giant, itself a fake. Circles within circles. You yourselves are the suckers if you think that this blog serves any noble purpose. It is simply a sorry excuse for you to spit bile, as far as I can see.

    Bonitas non est pessimis esse meliorem. (Seneca)


  2. Toby,

    Thanks for dropping by to annotate our posts semi-accurately.

    Your historical truthiness could also use some shoring up. The root of the “sucker” quote is actually more disputed than you let on. Not everyone agrees Hannum is the source. Some believe Chicago gambling-house keeper Michael Cassius McDonald (not to be confused with the Steely Dan guy) initially uttered the maxim. It first appeared in print in Opie Read’s A Yankee from the West. John Dos Passos, in The 42nd Parallel, credits Mark Twain with coining the phrase.

    This concludes today’s OT History Channel moment — a subsidiary of Noble Purpose, Inc.

    Now, perhaps, you can turn your scholarly attention to the study of something more pressing — like the etymology of both satire and irony. Some pockets of the fractal community seem to be suffering from acute deficiencies of these two concepts.

    I enjoyed the Seneca quote. But do you live it — or merely use it for the expediency of a cool closure? I’d translate it as: It is not goodness to be better than the worst.

    Wow. Thanks, Mrs. Pearson. Those two years of enduring your Latin class in high school finally paid off for something.

  3. Putting forth natural phenomena as your ‘top 5 fractals’ seems like a bit of a dodge to me: it neatly absolves you of the need to provide any critical justification for your choices. I would be more interested to see what you consider to be the greatest fractals ever made by humans.

  4. Hi Terry,

    Your Latin is better than mine: I had to look up the quote on the net. Do I live it? As much as I can. I make a conscious effort not to be destructive in areas where I recognize that I can be or am being so. Irony and satire have their place, although my impression is that you often cross the fine line where satire becomes invective and irony turns into cruelty.

    I personally have no interest in offering my opinion (and opinions they are: clearly asked for and stated as such) on the “best fractal art”, but if Keith and company like that kind of idle, coffee-table chat what harm is there in it? Why do you feel the need to constantly put UF and its community down?

    You must feel some sense of personal injustice to put so much energy into constantly harping on the subject. Or perhaps it is a function of your own psychic state: you just need a target on which to focus and discharge your anger and UF is handy. You tell me.

    Here is another quote which I hope you enjoy:

    “If, as the disciple fares along, he meets no companion who is better or equal, let him firmly pursue his solitary career. There is no fellowship with the foolish.”
    –Dhammapada, v.61


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