Tag Archives: helix

Helix Patterns



Posted by David

A few years ago I found a little treasure while playing around with some simple math in Flash. What I found was that naturalistic and artistic forms emerge out of the helix (a spiral). By using the following equation, one can find a great many of archetypal forms, as well as just some beautiful patterns.

x = cos(a) + sin(a)
y = sin(a) + cos(a

The simple equation I used sprays in a helix pattern a few hundred dots. The dots overlay each other, sometimes laying out in a traditional spiral form, but other times, the spray of dots produces beautiful interference patterns that resemble naturalistic forms such as shells, stars, taurus shapes, galactic-like structures as well as artistic forms such as rosettes, circles, triangles, crosses, etc.

Interestingly, I found the equation when I was searching for a mathematical pattern on which to base a painting about Genesis 1.2. So, instead to find a math-based tool that produced archetypal forms seemed to be no coincidence. It sure made me smile. What I was provided may have been the solution to a painting intended to describe the universe before there was light, before there was land, before there were stars, and before there was life. In the helix, it seems, may exist the precursors or archetypes on which life is based. Wait a minute, isn’t this similar to what Watson and Crick discovered in the chemical structure of the DNA?

I invite you to play around with the tool and see what interesting patterns you can find.


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