Lots of little squares

I just discovered this while goofing around in Microsoft Paint. If you take a section of a picture

hybiscus for Minecraft

and resize it by the maximum amount (500%) and then the maximum amount again, you get…..

magnified hybiscus 5x5x

Lots of little squares! This sort of pattern could be the inspiration for a mosaic, a quilt, or something in Minecraft.


There is software that will allow you to do the same thing in a much more complicated way. It’s called Spritecraft. Not only does it break your picture into little squares, it also translates the colors into the Minecraft approximations (using colors of wool, clay, etc).  It doesn’t build the object for you, you have to build it yourself using the pattern it gives you.


Here is a Minecraft mosaic of Notch from that link above.

Notch mosaic


World in a bubble

I’m still experimenting with variations on the “Volvox” theme (the crystal balls with green things inside them). What if the green things inside the crystal balls were actual islands? For my first attempt, the island was much too large. When I put the dome around it, the dome was so large that it extended into the “you can’t build below this point” zone.

world under dome

These experiments with “things inside of domes” have been reminding me of the movie “The Fountain”.

The fountain poster

There is a tree (or is it a person?) inside of a dome (or is it a spaceship?)…or was the whole thing a dream? I’m not sure, but it was a beautiful movie — I highly recommend it. Very cosmic.

The special effects of this movie were done in an unusual way. Instead of computer graphics special effects, they used a more organic method — blobs of fluid in petri dishes.

Parks and his son run a home f/x shop based on a device they call the microzoom optical bench. Bristling with digital and film cameras, lenses, and Victorian prisms, their contraption can magnify a microliter of water up to 500,000 times or fill an Imax screen with the period at the end of this sentence. Into water they sprinkle yeast, dyes, solvents, and baby oil, along with other ingredients they decline to divulge… The upshot is that Parks can make a dash of curry powder cascading toward the lens look like an onslaught of flaming meteorites. “When these images are projected on a big screen, you feel like you’re looking at infinity,” he says. “That’s because the same forces at work in the water – gravitational effects, settlement, refractive indices – are happening in outer space.”

article here:

And here is a short film clip where you can see the layers being added.


Back to my own little domes!

These landscapes are real!

The blog io9 has such cool stuff. This article has a series of unusual landscape photos that (to me!) look like they could be from Minecraft.



io9 article 1


io9 article 2

io9 article 3


io9 article 4

These crazy circular patterns are because of something called “center pivot irrigation”. From Wiki —

Center-pivot irrigation (sometimes called central pivot irrigation), also called waterwheel and circle irrigation, is a method of crop irrigation in which equipment rotates around a pivot and crops are watered with sprinklers. A circular area centered on the pivot is irrigated, often creating a circular pattern in crops when viewed from above.


center pivot irrigation


If you would like to make your own variation, here is a template for making circles in Minecraft…


If you click on the link, you will get a much larger version of this.

Minecraft circle chart

Volvox Globatoria

A short entry today, due to other responsibilities. Here’s Volvox Globatoria, a World In Progress.

Volvox 1 in MC 650

Inspiration from here  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volvox

These are mother colonies with daughter colonies inside. Sometimes even granddaughter colonies!

Here’s a challenge — the Minecraft version would look much more realistic if there were different shades of green. There is such a thing as green glass, also green clay. I don’t see those options in MC Edit, because they are a fairly new addition to Minecraft. But maybe there is a way to use the numerical codes for these kinds of blocks?

Gorgeous, inspiring art

I’ve been collecting pictures of buildings and landscapes that seem like they ought to be in a Minecraft world. I was just visiting the blog io9 and read about this artist today.

The World Where Everything’s an Iceberg: 90% Is Under the Surface

Created by artist Gediminas Pranckevicius, these are only a few of his excellent digital paintings. (Seriously, go check out some of his character concepts, they’re excellent.) But they all seem to play on the same theme, and could very well depict one world. A hidden one.


octopus island

io9 artist giant cliff

Here is the artist’s website. You will be amazed.

Where’s my brushes!!!

I opened WorldPainter today and it said there was a new version, and would I like to update? Sure, why not. It will over-write your files, it said. Fine, that sounds nice and tidy to me! Then I opened the program again, and all my “Custom Brushes” were gone. brushes

OK, no biggie. I’ll download some more. Next time I’ll save back-ups, too!

Here’s a nice post at the Minecraft forums, explaining “Custom Brushes” and giving some resources. There’s links to a tutorial not to mention a couple of brushes that you can download from that page.

I also searched Google Images for “geometric fabric patterns” and will try making Custom Brushes from some of those.