Attention all passengers departing Munich airport!

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From, where "Cheers!" is more than just a digital signature and "Prost!" needs no translation

I actually got a good look at the (new) Munich airport back in 1993 when I was on a British Airways flight to Istanbul.  The pilot announced that passengers were welcome to come up and look around the cabin (pre-9/11 days),  it was a clear day and when I was up there one of the pilots pointed over to the left and said,  “That’s the new airport at Munich”.

He's not joking; Eching is just down the road from the airport

Well drown my sorrows!  Hermann is none other than the Hermann of  I’m familiar with Wackerart because I bookmarked a particularly nice example of the Burning Ship formula a few months ago from that site.  It’s a special image for a number of reasons.

Burning Ship by Hermann Wacker

The burning ship formula is nothing new, but I find in today’s fractal art world it’s all about style now and not technology.  This image has a special style to it.

You can see the ship in distress on the horizon and how the “flames” reflect the windows and woodwork of the stern of an old sailing ship.  The top of the flames is even a chimney-like shape.  It’s a glowing, LED-red seascape and in dreamlike fashion the smoke from the ships rises up as surreal towers forming a forest of bare trees on a winter’s night (or maybe that’s just me).

The other reason this image is special is because it links directly to a java applet where you can explore this actual image by clicking on it.  Hermann’s fractal gallery is actually an interactive one; the images are just starting points for your own exploration.  (There’s an enormous amount of work on Hermann’s site including watercolor paintings.)

This is “java gallery” is a very nice way to introduce people to fractal art.  It shows not just how it’s made but also where it’s made.  The interactive image becomes merely one snapshot of the fractal “camera” and an example of how the final image is derived from the raw source of fractal imagery created by the software.

The coloring is fairly simple, but as I was saying, it’s not about technology so much anymore as it is about style.

Here’s another very stylish and yet deceptively simple image:

Spikebar 04 by jwm-art (on

Pretty simple fractal image in some ways and yet the bright but plain color scheme really makes the fractal patterns and structures become electric.  It’s like something out of a circus, but a very stylish circus like Cirque du Soleil.

Here’s another one by jwm-art:

Spobar 01 1000 by jwm-art

Simple shapes and simple colors again, but like all little things when they’re multiplied instead of added, the results are huge and categorically different.  That’s the difference (no pun intended) between the effects of technology compared to the effects of style on artistic impression.

I like the little Space Invaders shapes and especially, like in the previous one, the round, eye-like shapes in the central part of the image.  Also there is a certain phosphorescence to some of the elements in the image like the blue outer background and the green little shapes sailing on it.

Jwm-art had this to say about these two images of his in the original thread on

I’m quite pleased with how these two turned out. I’m trying to familiarize myself with tuning with zooming into the M-set. I’ve been spending quite a lot of time over the past few days exploring these things and am starting to see the patterns so to speak. I want to discover new constructs but am not sure it’s possible – I recently came across a page of Mandelbrot constructs created around the year 2000 which blew me away (sorry I can’t recall how I got to them).

(Unrelated to all this is an interesting and extremely realistic rendering of a mandelbox detail here on jwm-art’s site.)

Jwm-art is, if I’m reading the threads on correctly, currently writing his own fractal program, MDZ.  I believe these images I’ve shown here come from prototypes of that program he’s developing.  I just can’t get over how many multi-talented programmers have congregated over on  It’s like the Athens of fractal art to which I am nothing more than a tourist.  Fortunately for people like me, you don’t have to speak Greek to look at the pictures.

I just discovered from reading the Readme file of mdz-0.0.9 that jwm-art is James W. Morris.  I kept thinking it had some connection with Joe’s Window Manager but no, it’s unrelated.

I don’t know if some of the graphical qualities of James’ images are a product of his program, MDZ, and that MDZ just lends itself to these styles of rendering.

Well, in closing I’d just like to suggest that I think it only appropriate that Fractalforums adds another smiley to their vast repetoire of emoticons in honor of Hermann’s hospitable invitation:

How comments work: After the approval of your very first comment you will be able to post future comments immediately to any posting. Any username or fictitious email is good enough.

6 thoughts on “Attention all passengers departing Munich airport!

  1. Hi Guys – I’ve been reading through some of your posts having been directed here by Platinus at DeviantArt – all very interesting stuff, particularly the legal implications of parameter files versus image files.

    However, I was wondering if you could help me in another area. I’m interested in finding out how people in the fractal art world assess fractal art. What criteria can be applied in making judgements? What would be a “good” fractal? Further, I’m interested in knowing whether such criteria have changed over the short time computed fractal art has been around.

    It may well be that these questions have been posed already, thus, if you know of any other web sites, books, articles and son that I could consult I would be very grateful if you could pass them on.

    Perhaps I should say, briefly, a bit about my background, given that this is a serious enquiry. I’m a scientist and consultant (retired with a strong interest in art and art history. I used to play with UltraFractal and Bryce when they were much younger. I’ve come back to the fractal world to find it much changed and with some smattering of knowledge about art, its structures and devices.

    Thank You for your attention and help.

    David aka Okavanga on dA

  2. that’s funny, I’m actually going to Istanbul with a transfer from the Munich airport just next month.. :D I’m hoping I won’t have to wait for long enough for a meet-up though :)

  3. @David_WS: I think what you’re getting at is standards or group norms for evaluating fractal art? I don’t know of any. The fractal art world in my opinion is a very loose and informal thing where critical attitudes are usually met with suspicion.

    Now, if you would like to make some suggestions as to what makes for good, or at least better fractal art and possibly what sort of criteria should be considered, I’m sure that would be of interest to people. We also take the occasional guest posting on Orbit Trap, so you could always submit something to us if you that interest you.

    Thanks for stopping by,

  4. Tim posted this on Monday the 22nd, and I had also seen Hermann’s invitation on the 18th. By pure chance, I was in Munich that week, I contacted Hermann and we agreed to meet at the Airbraü restaurant in the airprot on Friday the 19th. Unfortunately for fractal discussion, but fortunately for my family, I was able to get an earlier flight, so I could not meet Hermann, and he drank my beer :(

  5. Tim – thanks for your reply re criteria. Your comments are very helpful especially the one about “suspicion”. I’m not in a position at the moment to put forward ideas of my own, I’m still trying to get to grips with what’s going on.

    Thanks again, and I’ll be in touch.


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