Gallery Show is a cool new feature in Studio Artist 4. You can use it to build free-running art shows that endlessly loop creating new art imagery for display in an art gallery. You can also use gallery show to automatically generate sets of randomly evolved art images or effect presets that can be culled through for ‘keepers’. This tip will discuss how to build a gallery show that generates randomized vectorizer imagery.
Gallery show is a new feature in Studio Artist 4 that can be used to put together free running art shows. A gallery show consists of a series of cycles. Each cycle generates an artistic effect, that can then be displayed on the screen for a specified period of time before another cycle starts. You specify the details of your gallery show in the Gallery preferences tab.
Each cycle can potentially select a new source image to work with a gallery show technique. The source could be randomly selected, sequentially selected, or the source could be derived off of a live video capture.
The technique options provide different approaches to building a free running gallery show. Your gallery show could be based off of randomly selected factory presets, custom folders of your own presets, or randomly evolved operation modes. Some techniques work with additional scan or painting options.
An additional start cycle option allows the screen to be erased or not before each cycle. A random preset from a favorites folder can also be used to provide a transition effect at the start of the cycle before the main processing technique is run.
The Random Vectorizer technique is the one we’re focusing on in this particular example. But there are many different techniques you can choose from to customize your gallery show. Working with custom sets of presets in favorites folders is a way to craft a personalized gallery art show for use in an art gallery display or for live presentation performance.
The first screen shot of the Gallery tab in the main preference dialog at the top of this tip shows the particular gallery show options we used to build this example. The Random Vectorizer technique mutates a new randomized Vectorizer preset for each gallery show cycle.
The Source option used for the gallery show chooses random source images from a specified folder. You can click on the Source Folder button to specify your own folder of custom source images.
There are a number of different Source Options available for your gallery show. The live Video Capture option can be particularly fun if you want to construct a gallery show in a public place like an art gallery that processes live frame captures from the room the gallery show is running in.
Our gallery show example is setup to wait for 2 seconds after a new art image is finished before starting on generating the next one. How long it takes to generate the new art image in this next gallery show cycle is a function of what kind of processing is being run in your gallery show technique and how computationally intensive it is. The screen will not be updated until the new art image is finished being generated.
Running a Gallery Show
After specifying the options for your custom gallery show you are ready to actually run it. To run a gallery show based on the current Gallery preferences, just run the Action : Run Gallery Show menu command. Depending on which gallery show technique you are running there may be a pause for a few seconds before your gallery show begins.
Galley Show will continue running until you stop it. To stop a running gallery show, just press the spacebar key.
If you see a cool image generated at the end of a gallery show cycle you want to save, you can use the spacebar to stop the gallery show and then use the File: Save Canvas as menu to save the image. If gallery show has already completed the cycle you were interested in and generated additional images you can stop the gallery show and then use the Edit : Undo menu to move back through previous gallery show cycle output.
You can also cancel the current gallery show cycle early and have it move on to the next cycle without stopping the gallery show run. This is not going to be particularly useful for the random vectorizer technique, but can be very useful to advance to the next cycle if you are using one of the paint synthesizer or dual paint techniques. To cancel the current cycle and move to the next on, hold down the shift key and then press the spacebar key. Continue to hold down the shift key until the cycle advances.
The random vectorizer gallery show technique is capable of creating a wide range of different stylistic processing effects. Some different examples from our tutorial gallery show run are shown below.
Saving your gallery show art images
You can use Studio Artist’s Movie Stream features to save a folder of the art images generated by your custom gallery show. You could also save the sequential art show images in a movie file if you wish.
To save a folder of art images, you use the File : Stream : New Image Stream menu command. After running this menu command you get a standard file dialog that you use to select the folder where you want your art images to be saved in. You also specify a default name for your art images. Each saved art images will use that default name with additional numbering added at the end of the name.
After opening your image stream, you need to specify how frames will be written into the open image stream. To capture your gallery show art images you will need to run on the File : Stream : Flags: Enable Write on Gallery Show Cycle menu flag show above.
After you have opened a new image stream and enabled frame writing for gallery show cycles you can start your gallery show by using the Action : Run Gallery Show menu command. Each art image generated in a gallery show cycle will be written out into your specified movie stream folder.
When you finish your gallery show run, remember to close your open image stream. You can close an open image or movie stream by running the File : Stream : Close Open Stream menu command. This will also happen automatically when you quit Studio Artist.
Saving your gallery show evolved custom preset for later use
You also can record the custom randomized presets gallery show is generating for each cycle in a gallery show run. To do this you can use the History Sequence palette. Open the History Sequence using the appropriate Window menu. The turn on history recording by clicking the Rec check box at the top of the History Sequence palette.
When you start your gallery show run by using the Action : Run Gallery Show menu command, a new action step will be recorded in the history sequence at the end of each gallery show cycle. After you are finished with your gallery show run you can turn off history sequence recording by unclicking the Rec check box. Every randomized technique effect run in a gallery how cycle has been recorded as a single action step in the history sequence you recorded. You can export the history sequence to disk to save you gallery show run.
You can then use the contextual menu commands to play back specific history sequence action steps. To do this, hold down the control key (right click on windows) and the click on the action step you want to playback. A contextual menu will come up. Select the Play Selected Action Step menu to play back your specified action step. If you like the particular effect that was recorded in that action step you can export it as a preset file.
You can also open your exported history sequence as a paint action sequence. This can be useful because you can then just click on an individual action step’s initial frame 1 keyframe to play it back, as an alternative to using the contextual menus to play the action step.
We’ve discussed how to build a custom gallery show. The particular gallery show technique we used was the Random Vectorizer technique. We also shows how you can save art images created in a gallery show run by using the Image or Movie Stream features. And we showed how you can use the History Sequence to record and save the custom presets generated and used in the gallery show run.
We’ve barely scratched the surface of what Gallery Show is capable of in this short tutorial. Try out your own gallery shows and see for yourself.
For More Information
This tip provides more information on working with Movie and Image Streams.
This tip provides more information on Studio Artist’s Vectorizer.