Push Pull

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john

01 Aug, 2020 11:34 PM

Attached is a new node, push_pull.

The basic geometric shapes produced by existing NodeBox nodes like ellipse and polygon are precise and symmetrical. But sometimes you need more organic shapes that are just a little bit off: raindrops, eggs, an isosceles or scalene triangle, etc. These can be a slight pain to create; you either have to build them in another tool and import them as SVGs or build them point by point in NodeBox.

Push_pull is intended to make this task easier by simply tugging at or pressing in at an existing shape with a certain force from a certain direction. It's not a universal drawing tool, but it's surprising how many interesting shapes you can make with it.

Like my find_arc node, push_pull has a "show controls" option that you can toggle on and off. Toggle it on to position the "paddle" and select which points you wish to influence, then toggle it off to use your new shape.

Tips:

  • Push_pull applies force from a specific direction; positive force values push, negative force values pull.
  • When show controls is enabled you can see the inflection points (in blue) and curve control points (in red) that define any NodeBox shape.
  • Only points from the center outward are included; by adjusting the direction and width of the paddle you can define what subset of points will be affected.
  • If you make your paddle too narrow and point it between points none will be selected; you will see a gray beam of light showing your current width and direction.
  • Included points will be filled in (either blue or red).
  • For better visibility you can adjust the size of the control points; this has no effect on the shape.
  • By default the center is set to the centroid of the shape, defined at 0,0 regardless of where the shape is actually located. If need be you can adjust the center point, anywhere in or out of the shape, in order to select a particular subset of control points.

In addition to a sample network, I have attached a screenshot with "show controls" enabled. I have also attached a still from a recent animation I did, "egg roll", which shows the variety of shapes you can make with the tool. To see the eggs roll into place check out my Instagram video: https://www.instagram.com/p/CDQgv4AH2dP/

Push_pull will be included in the next rev of my node library which I hope to get out out soon. If any of you use this node, please reply and let me know how you like it and if you have any suggestions for further improvement.

Enjoy!

John

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