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A fractal is a non-regular geometric shape that has a similar degree of non-regularity in scale. It’s like a never-ending pattern. What’s interesting is that it’s often present around us more often than you’d think.
One of the easier to sport fractals are from waves. A wave, in mathematical terms, is a disturbance of one or more fields. These waves repeat those values in an oscillating manner.
A great example is the ocean waves. The waves in the ocean are caused by the wind disturbing the ocean’s surface. The energy that passes through the water causes the swell and fall of the wave.
Aside from the wind, waves are caused by the tectonic shift in the ocean floor. The shift causes big waves that transfer energy until it hits land.
Ever noticed that the waves look similar each time? It’s because the waves form self-similar patterns as the energy is passed along. These curves are fractals at work.
Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai took note of these beautiful patterns and created The Great Wave off Kanagawa. It depicted the movement of the waves so beautifully. It also demonstrated the beauty of wave fractals.
Now, when you need to simulate waves for your video, animators apply the Iterated Function System or IFS fractals. The resulting fractal using this method are self-similar, such as in waves. Or you can also just watch this tutorial on how to create waves in After Effects.
Launched: May 18, 2020