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Hubisms: Abstract Computer Art

Updated on August 17, 2014

Hubisms: a Form of Abstract Made in Landscape Programs

Hubisms are made in computer programs normally made for rendering landscapes and indoor scenes. They have been promoted primarily by Hubert Schaefer of Germany, whom I have the privilege of knowing as an e-friend. He has also developed the art form quite a bit, and has generously shared many files with me. The reflective surface I use in Bryce was a gift from Hubert.

Hubisms involve using abstract and other shapes coated with a transparent material (and other materials) and a series of colored lights. They are usually placed inside a reflective sphere or other shape, and the sole illumination is from the lights placed inside with the shapes.

This Lens is a collection of Hubisms I have made.

This Hubism is entitled "Portal".

Soli Deo Gloria.

More on techniques

A Hubism gets part of its appearance from the reverberation of reflections inside the enclosed space.

This is one of my early Hubisms, entitled "City Lights". It was made entirely from cubes and rectangular solids.

Vue d'Esprit

Most of my Hubisms (and other people's) are made in Bryce, a rather well known landscape program. As far as I know, I am the only person who makes Hubisms in Vue d'Esprit.

Here is one entitled "Glass Hubism 5". It is actually made with an outside transparent shape and incorporates a sky.

More Technique Information

Hubisms are somewhat tricky to design. During the design process, the various shapes are moved around so that the reflections shift as well. Even a tiny movement of either camera or one object can drastically change the appearance of the image.

This one is called "Stone Hubism".


This collaboration between Hubert Schaefer and myself is called "Rusty Lazuli". I make it a practice to make sure my results look very different from his, or I won't sell prints. In this case, it resembles one he made sufficiently that I regard it as a collaboration instead.

Hubert Schaefer

Sometimes it increases a person's enjoyment of something if they know a little about the person who came up with it, whether it be an idea or an art work, or whatever.

I introduce to you Hubert Schaefer, resident of southwestern Germany, who popularized the technique (to the extent it has been, although unfortunately, not many artists use this technique). In addition to making Hubisms, Hubert likes to make scenes with the Poser figure Woody. His wacky sense of humor shines through these pieces. He puts Woody into all sorts of imaginative and difficult situations, but somehow Woody survives, in spite of his flammability.

Here is his home page on Renderosity.

Hubert Schaefer

You can see Hubert's art work here:

Hubert's Art

Oh, and by the way, Hubert likes beer and cats. He has several, and his home page picture shows him with a couple of them and a nice glass of beer. Of course, his native language is German, but his English is quite good, with only an occasional quaint expression. I don't know how good his pronunciation is, because I have never heard his voice. Maybe someday.

In other news, Hubert likes to garden, and he has a small orchard behind his home. During the week, he commutes to another city for the entire week. He works in a call center answering technical questions. Beyond that, I don't know what his field is, because we never talk about anything serious. We just tease each other. And he insists he is not an artist, and that is a point on which we will NEVER agree.

And he supplies me with starter files for new Hubisms. (He has a few in his free stuff on Renderosity; if you have Bryce, you can try them out. Just move stuff around, change the colors of lights, and things like that, and when you like the way it looks, "click the shutter".)


This has been one of my most popular Hubisms. It's called "Coherent Cacophony".

Same Starter File

This one was made from the same file as the previous one. It is called "Eye Pearl 65".

First of Three

This one is from a different starter file. I offer three different images made from the same one.

This one is called "Squares and Circles".

Second of Three

Sometimes other shapes besides geometric forms are used. This one uses the staircase that comes with Bryce.

It is called "Lobby" because it reminds me of a hotel lobby.

Third of Three

This one is also one of my most popular images. It is called "Dolphin Playground". Here you see another use of a shape besides a geometric shape. The dolphin is widely circulated among Bryce users, and I put a gold material on it.

I have other Hubisms that I will be adding from time to time. If you would like to see more, or larger versions of these, visit

my Hubisms on deviantArt.

Abstracts. Not everything in the gallery is a Hubism, and not all of my Hubisms are in this particular gallery. You can find others by doing a search in my gallery, by title of the Hubism.

Two Series

New technique

These two series of images were made by a slightly different technique, also developed by Hubert Schaefer. It involves using two or more planes with materials from the DTE (Deep Texture Editor). There are no shiny spheres involved in any of these images below.

This is brand new work. I will name the images as I figure out what to call them.

First Series

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Too similar to original; not usednot yet namedRaindrops Are Fallingnot yet namedBuilding in China (reminds me of the building that collapsed because they were removing dirt and rain washed away the dirt under the building, so it fell over, but was intact.)not yet namedFramednot yet named
Too similar to original; not used
Too similar to original; not used
not yet named
not yet named
Raindrops Are Falling
Raindrops Are Falling
not yet named
not yet named
Building in China (reminds me of the building that collapsed because they were removing dirt and rain washed away the dirt under the building, so it fell over, but was intact.)
Building in China (reminds me of the building that collapsed because they were removing dirt and rain washed away the dirt under the building, so it fell over, but was intact.)
not yet named
not yet named
not yet named
not yet named

Second Series

Click thumbnail to view full-size
SpunkyMutednot yet namednot yet namednot yet namedTextured Purple
not yet named
not yet named
not yet named
not yet named
not yet named
not yet named
Textured Purple
Textured Purple

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