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Eric Heller
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artist's statement | technical statement | process



technical statement

When a water colorist puts a wet brush to paper, physics rules the result: wetting and fluid flow on paper, scattering and absorption of light by pigment on fibers, evaporation and drying hold sway. These physical phenomena mimic other aspects of the natural world and with experience can be harnessed to wonderful effect. Similar statements hold for pastels, egg tempera, oils, photographs, etc. To date, digital painting tools have tried to emulate traditional media and effects. Digital artists need no longer emulate traditional media only! The computer allows us to create new media, with new rules, more naturally suited to the new tool. But such rules are best when they too follow physical phenomena, instead of arbitrary mathematical constructs.
I have learned to paint with electrons moving over a potential landscape, quantum waves trapped between walls, chaotic dynamics, and with colliding molecules. Nature often mimics herself, and so these new media, exposing the beauty and mystery of the atomic world, yield a variety of effects that recall familiar aspects of our macroscopic experience.

The images are mostly the result of computer code, which I have written, with output to raw RGB files which I then manipulate in Photoshop. My prints are EverColor Luminage Direct-Digital Prints produced on a CSI LightJet 5000 printer using high resolution RGB lasers to expose RA 4 photographic print materials. The process provides the highest resolution color output available.