Examples of Fractals Achieved with Different Fractal Generators
The Fractal Programs I Use
Sterling2 is a free program and I have found it to be the easiest to use.
Apophysis Another free program, probably the most popular fractal generator out there.
Ultra-Fractal A paid program. Hugely versatile, can be used to produce abstract flowers and shapes.
Incendia Free software that produces 3D images.
Mandelbulb3D Another free program that allows the exploration of 3D fractals
Fractal art truly depends on the computing power of computers. Almost all of it is created using different software programs. Many of these are free, and the ones that are sold are fairly reasonably priced, making them accessible to amateur digital artists.
Although an amazing array of images can be created using any of these programs, depending on the skill and preferences of the person using them, each generator produces different images. Somebody familiar with fractal art will probably be able to tell which program was used to produce an image.
Below are examples of the fractals that can be produced by several of the more popular software packages.
All images used here are my own, © aa lite.
It might seem that given the availability of so many free fractal generators, there would not be any demand for Ultra-Fractal, a program you actually have to buy. However UF is so versatile, and so easy to use, that many people do buy it.
The program comes loaded with a large number of formulas, as well as colouring algorithms, which allow the creation of complex abstract flowers. It also has a plethora of mapping transformations which allow the creation of marbles, eggs, and frames. All this makes it possible to create abstract art scenes which at first glance don't really appear to be fractal.
More Examples of UF Marbles
Sterling2 is not used very much anymore. It is, however, the easiest of the fractal generators I use. Creating fractals with it depends more on just trying out different combinations, rather than mastering different techniques.
In general Sterling2 fractals are less "dense" in appearance than those produced by other programs. The fractal generator does, however, give the user a lot of control over the colour palette of the image.
Examples of Sterling2 fractalsClick thumbnail to view full-size
Apophysis is probably the most popular fractal generator used today. It can be used to create fractal flames, as well as complex space filling patterns.
There are a number of methods for producing specific types of images, based on combining two or three transformations that work well together. The different types are named after the base transformations, such as the splits-elliptics, or the sphericals fractal.
Transformations are symbolised by triangles in the fractal editor. The user assigns transformations, and possible variables to each triangle, and can then resize, rotate or move them around.
I have not found this program easy to use. It can be quite frustrating trying to generate sharp patterns using it.