Kaleidoscope Samples
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A Better Kaleidoscope

First there was the normal Kaleidoscope. A normal (optical) kaleidoscope uses mirrors and coloured glass to create a repeating image, the coloured glass is the "source" for the image, the mirrors make the image appear to repeat in all directions.

Then there was synthesized Kaleidoscopes. There are kaleidoscope programs that can simulate optical kaleidoscopes by synthesizing the whole image from a geometric description of the "source" image.

Now there is a "Better" Kaleidoscope. This kaleidoscope allows an image (a digital photo, a scan, original art work) to be the "source", and reflects a small part of it to produce a seamless pattern that repeats in all directions. Look at the samples below to see the results. 

This program is unusual because it makes the kaleidoscopic image (static or moving) from another image, rather than just synthesizing a drawing.
As well as being an interesting "toy", the seamless repeating images that are produced are very useful as wallpaper (for web sites and other presentation documents). The wallpaper theme can be based on detail from an image related to the subject matter, thus enhancing the cohesiveness of the whole page.
For an example of a packaged screen saver, see the Oxford Computer Group Christmas screen saver for 2003.
For further information about about using this program as a plugin (in a painting program), as a screensaver, or as a self-contained kaleidoscope-like program, please mail us with your interest.
This program started life as an exercise in graphics manipulation, but anyone who finds a normal kaleidoscope fascinating will understand the appeal and intrigue of being able to manipulate an image in the same way.
Source image and selected area Kaleidoscope image
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Smooth stones give very fluid natural images. The   image of the stones was made by simply placing them on a scanner

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Coloured glass beads produce many beautiful images. (Again a scanner can easily create the original image.)

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Another example of glass beads.

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Flowers make good coloured patterns.

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Another use for a flower (Isolana, from the Hawthorne collection)

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A few shapes from a painting program are enough for a pattern.

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Clip-art can be used to make fascinating images.

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Another example of a clip-art kaleidoscope.

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A detail from a "holiday snap"

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Even a saucepan handle and lid have potential!

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All images are copyrighted, they may not be used without permission.

2006 Camel Services Ltd. www.camel.co.uk