Bent

There are no wrong turns

Bent is a collection of 1023 images, generated by code that resides on the Ethereum block chain. The outputs were minted on November 29, 2021 on Art Blocks Curated. Bent is created using code. The main script used to generate the outputs was written in JavaScript and is 6893 characters in length. A drawing package called p5js is also used to facilitate generating the images in a web browser. The code provides the drawing instructions and is what has been written onto the Ethereum blockchain. When the minting process occurs, a unique hash is created and used by the code a random number generator in the code to control the unique look and feel of each different output.

214000000
Bent #0
collage2
All 1023 Bents
CleanShot-2022-08-17-at-10.52.13@2x
Bent code

Bent Construction

Bent follows a simple premise: lines are bent and shaded. But the underlying structure is a more complex. To create Bent, a grid of triangles (1) is selectively subdivided into smaller triangles (2). Lines are added to each triangular region to create tiles (3), then bent (4). Adjusting the shade by darkening some lines provides three-dimensional depth and brings the structure to life (5). Finally, color (6) and texture (7) are applied to complete the work.

The entire process of the sketch is stored on the blockchain, making each Bent output an interactive piece. The final results are shown by default, but the viewer can use the number keys 1-7 or left/right arrow keys to explore the stages of sketch construction. Try it for yourself here. I really enjoy sharing behind-the-scenes and how-to aspects of my work, so I built that capability into the output itself. Art doesn’t just appear on the screen. It’s hard work. But artmaking is for normal people and involves skills that can be learned (this is paraphrased from one of my favorite books, Art & Fear). This is one way I hope to show that art isn’t magic and encourage people to make art for themselves, not just by showing them the final result, but by sharing the process.

b0_1
1 – Grid
b0_2
2 – Divide
b0_3
3 – Tile
b0_4
4 – Bend
b0_5
5 – Shade
b0_6
6 – Color

Bent Features

When the Bents were minted, the transaction hash from that mint seeded a random number generator. The random number generator is then used to determine the features of the output such as size, color palette, or bending pattern. The rest of this page will go through some more prominent features and demonstrate how they contribute to the variety of Bent outputs.

Size 

Size ranges from Jumbo to Tiny, determined by the size of the underlying grid. Medium is the most common, accounting for almost half of all mints (47%), followed by Small (20%) and Large (25%). The least common are Jumbo (3%) and Tiny (5%). The Large and Jumbo are striking and look excellent as thumbnails or as a large mural. Small and Tiny are interesting to zoom and explore and some almost appear just as texture when viewed from afar. Medium strike a good balance.

214001001
Jumbo (#1001)
214000951
Medium (#951)
214000689
Tiny (#689)

Color 

After Size, the next feature that really controls the look and feel of each mint is the Color.

Background Color

Most backgrounds are Light (61%), and some are Dark (36%). Light and Dark backgrounds are very lightly saturated with the same color as the lines, but they vary randomly so each Light and Dark background is slightly different. Color backgrounds are very rare; there are only 18 mints with a colorful background (2%).  

214000253
Light Backgorund (#253)
214000958
Dark Background (#958)
214000340
Color Backround (#340)

Line Color - Solid

The colors of Bent are based on 7 primary colors from the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, teal, blue, purple. Most Bents (61%) use just a single, solid color. My kids helped me name the colors:

  • Ruby (red, 11%) - named for our dog Ruby (Red), and our favorite Texas vodka
  • Crush (orange, 8%) - like the orange Crush soft drink
  • Medallion (yellow, 2%) - the least probable color; gold medals are rare
  • Juniper (green, 12%) - evergreen Juniper trees are abundant in our home in Central Texas
  • Wave (teal, 7%) - my family loves spending time on the water
  • Atmosphere (blue, 13%) - the sky varies in shades of blue when traveling up and through the atmosphere
  • Jam (purple, 8%) - like grape jelly on PB&Js, and JAM are my kid's first initials combined
214000867
Ruby (#867)
214000846
Juniper (#846)
214000992
Atmosphere (#992)
214000922
Crush (#922)
214000537
Medallion (#537)
214000997
Wave (#997)
214000808
Jam (#808)
Bentgradient

Line Color - Gradients

Many Bents (28%) apply gradients to the lines. Gradients traverse the screen from top to bottom, side-to-side, or at a diagonal. The gradients transition to and from the colors listed above (ROYGTBP).

  • Ember (orange / blue 9%) - campfires at sunset
  • Tiger (orange / purple, 4%) - the colors of Clemson University (the Tigers), my alma mater
  • Lagoon (green / blue 6%) - like a tropical lagoon, warm and inviting
  • Burst (orange / yellow 2%) - the colors of the sun bursting forth with energy
  • Autumn (green / red 2%) - the changing colors of fall leaves
  • Crest (blue / teal 2%) - the crest of a wave
  • Mood (yellow / blue or puple 4%) - these colors just looked moody to us, what mood is for you to decide
214000308
Ember (#308)
214000780
Tiger (#780)
214000614
Lagoon (#614)
214000407
Burst (#407)
214000563
Autumn (#563)
214000241
Crest (#241)
214000103
Mood (#103)

Line Color - Black, White, Rainbow

Rare line colors include:

214000950
Bone (#950)
214000228
Ink (#228)
214000546
Rainbow (#546)

Line Color - Pair (7%)

Pair is when the Primary and Secondary line are different solid colors. Link to see all.

214000250
#250
214000753
#753
214000583
#583

Bending Mechanism

There are 14 different bending mechanicms. This feature determines how and where the lines are Bent. 

Bending Mechanism - Common

  • Center (13%) - the center is bent, while the edges remain in the same direction
  • Edges (13%) - the edges are bent, while the center remains in the same direction
  • Across (14%) - bending increases from top-to-bottom or side-to-side
  • Group (31%) - an underlying noise field is used to group regions together, as if the bends are flowing
  • Wander (13%) - bends are random
214000049
Center (#49)
214000452
Edges (#452)
214000926
Across (#926)
214000116
Group (#116)
214000802
Wander (#802)

Bending Mechanism - Rare

  • Stairs (3%) - bends create stair-like features
  • Cliff (3%) - bends are created to make it look like the bottom or top of a cliff or waterfall
  • Momuments (2%) - a reference to my Monuments series on Foundation
  • Circles (1%) - circles (or hexagons) are created 
  • Seam (2%) - a single seam is created across the image
  • Connect (2%) - like seam, but at multiple vertical locations
  • Radiate (3%) - bends radiate from the center
  • Symmetric (1%) - from top to bottom or left to right
  • Conform (2%) - regions with a center line are bent in one direction, and those without a center line are bent in another
214000051
Stairs (#51)
214000814
Cliff (#814)
214000402
Monuments (#402)
214000956
Circles (#956)
214000644
Seam (#644)
214000763
Connect (#763)
214000827
Radiate (#827)
214000351
Symmetric (#351)
214000679
Conform (#679)

Dividing Mechanism

The second step of Bent construction is 'Divide', when some regions of the underlying isometric grid are divided into smaller 4 smaller triangular regions. Whether or not this division happens is detemined by the Dividing Mechanism feature. The third step of construction is 'Tile', when the triangular regions are filled with lines. The smallest triangular regions get one Primary line, but the larger regions get both Primary lines as well as Secondary lines that run between the Primary lines. Primary and Seconday lines have different line widths and colors. The construction of Bent #180 is shown below to illustrate this point. 

download-5
1 – Grid
download-6
2 – Divide
download-7
3 – Tile
download-10
Bent #180

 Dividing Mechanism

  • All (22%) - all triagular regions are divided, leaving now Secondary lines
  • Across (18%) - across the image at various angles
  • Group (22%) - divisions occur following an underlying noise field, resulting in patterns (see if you can see the white rabbit in #104 below)
  • Wander (15%) - all random
  • Center (9%) - the edges are divided, leaving Secondary lines in the center
  • Edges (8%) - the center is divided, leaving Secondary lines around the edges
  • Radiate (4%) - divisions happen in radiating patterns, often resulting in colorful sunburst effects
  • Symmetric (1%) - this always occurs when the symmetric Bending Mechainsm is set
214000880
All (#880)
214000606
Across (#606)
214000104
Group (#104)
214000178
Wander (#178)
214000332
Center (#332)
214000896
Edges (#896)
214000847
Radiate (#847)
214000279
Symmetric (#279)

Special Cases

A few special case features remain.

Inverted (19%)

This is combination of two features: Primary Line = Thin, and Secondary Line = Yes. Link to see all.

214000604
214000604
214000454
214000454
214000746
214000746

Ribbon (3%)

Secondary Lines throughout. Link to see all.

214000399
#399
214000143
#143
214000702
#702

Touching (7%)

This is one of my favorite features. The Primary and Secondary Lines are touching here, which make these Bent feel a little more solid. Link to see all.

214000421
#421
214000650
#650
214000647
#647

No Shade (5%)

Lines are bent and shaded... except when they're not. Some Bents aren't shaded, eliminating the 2.5/3D look. Link to see all.

214000299
#299
214000489
#489
214000122
#122

Single Bends (0.5%)

This isn't a deliberate feature, it's a fix for a bug. The features can align in such a way that a rare condition occurs and all of the lines align in the same direction - when this happens, the code recognizes that and bends one line randomly. Only five of these Bents exist, and they had to be determined by combing all 1023 outputs. All five can be seen below. #442 and #555 are two of my favorite Bents in the entire series.

214000442
#442
214000555
#555
214000440
#440
214000155
#155
214000384
#384

Other Work

SketchXTZ · long-form

Echos and OrbitsXTZ · long-form

PLANET ERRORXTZ · long-form

NomenclatureETH · 1/1's

BoundXTZ · long-form

MonumentsETH · 1/1's

ShadesETH · 1/1's

ShatteredETH · 1/1's

Sink · Swim · FloatETH · 1/1's

ShardsETH · 1/1's

Accidental MoiréXTZ · 1/1's

Wave FramesETH · 1/1's