Sculpting with Light – Richard “Dr” Baily

Groundbreaking computer animator Richard “Dr” Baily was a leader in particle based computer animations. He worked on movies such as Tron, Superman Returns, Blade and The Matrix, but he is probably best known for the beautiful animations for the movie Steven Soderbergh’s Solaris.

Bailey referred to what he did as “Sculpting with Light”, rather than animation, something that really resonated with me.

Bailey produced over 60,000 frames of atmospheric planet animation using his own particle system – called SPORE – developed in C++. You can see a few of the planet animations here in the trailer:

Of SPORE Bailey, commented: “[It’s] a system that’s sort of a continuum between order and chaos. Some images reside firmly in the world of order, with the particles animated in a fairly straightforward way. Other images that look really twitchy and electric reside in the world of chaos.

Ultimately, the goal was to build a living system that will breed and evolve designs and animations that I would never have dreamed of, and could not produce by any other means.”

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Bailey died in 2006. See more of his work at http://www.imagesavant.com

Also of interest:

Norman McLaren
Corilane opening sequence
Radarboy Reaktiv at Apple Store Tokyo
Pretty amazing and epic stop motion by Blu
The Living Room – Sound Reactive TV
Literature vs. Traffic
Lightweeds: Living digital projections

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