Nowadays, fractal patterns are used in clothing and interior design. They are also handy for creating videos, video game backgrounds, websites, business cards, banners and other types of ads.
If you use Photoshop or Illustrator, you will face serious difficulties and lose much time when trying to create fractals. This is why I have gathered the main information about the best fractal generators that will help you optimize your workflow and bring even the most complex ideas to fruition.
These are the software that can be installed on your PC, accessed from your smartphone or browser. With these programs and online services, you can create fractal images and animations. Almost all of them are free to use and allow you to configure various settings.
Verdict: Mandelbulb 3D is a free program designed for fractal rendering. It was created by Jesse and other developers from Fractal Forums who were inspired by the idea behind Daniel White and Paul Nylander’s Mandelbulb project.
With MB3D, you can use various nonlinear equations to create countless variations of fractals. To make your objects stand out, you can apply amazing effects as well as adjust colors, shadows, depth-of-field, lighting and other parameters.
MB3D became so popular among digital artists that it now has its own fan-base on Deviant Art that is considered to be one of the best free vector sites. Besides, many people use Facebook to share their works, post helpful tutorials and formulas of the most unusual fractals.
This fractal generator has a nicely organized user interface. If you need any help, you can find a lot of online lessons and tips posted online. The program runs under Windows.
Verdict: What makes this fractal generator so unique is that is allows working with 256-color icons in Windows. You can configure 12 settings to create a unique work. Thanks to the grid feature, you can preview your image and decide how to enhance it even further. There are 400+ holons available, but you can choose only some of them.
Thanks to a wide selection of options, such as background enhancement, stereo post-processing and depth-of-field adjustment, it’s also possible to create complex objects. This free fractal software enables you to import and configure gradients. You will also appreciate the tools that let you make shadows softer, allow exporting meshes and Point Cloud data.
Verdict: FractalNow features plenty of advanced options that will help you generate fractals in no time. Besides a command line, you can use the FractalNow and QFractalNow options to optimize your workflow. To add a touch of creativity to your images, try using the special features for generating fractals provided by Qt libraries.
All the tools are well-thought-out as they were designed with the help of complex algorithms. It accounts for the impressive speed that makes this fractal generator stand out among other services. Another advantage is its easy-to-navigate user interface. You will appreciate the command-line option that will help you create mesmerizing animations by using scripts.
Verdict: Ultra Fractal is a useful service with an impressive set of features. Besides importing files in various formats, it lets you edit formulas, use pre-made transformations, gradients and various settings. With it, you can save images and videos alike, as it allows exporting files in AVI, PNG, Targa, BMP, JPEG and TIFF formats.
What I like the most about this service is that it supports a 100,000 pixels per side resolution, which is great when you need to enlarge any part of your picture. Another advantage of Ultra Fractal is its high speed. After installing this fractal software, you can easily edit masks, textures and backgrounds with the help of layers.
Verdict: JWildFire is a powerful fractal graphics editor. It is written in Java and designed to create fractal flames. The main advantage of this easy fractal generator is that it lets you apply stunning 3D effects, such as waves, ripples, etc.
When using JWildfire, you can enjoy a real-time preview. It allows using flames as plug-ins, features HDR outputs and has the Pseudo3D shader for more realistic results during 3D rendering. You can also create custom plug-ins. This fractal flame generator can be installed both on Windows and Mac computers. You can also install a mobile version on your Android smartphone.
Verdict: If you are looking for a fast fractals generator for creating animated objects, it’s a great option to consider. It has an intuitive interface with easy-to-use buttons. Here, you can find such options as New, Fit to Screen, Animate, Export Image, Save, Add Frame, Enable High-Quality Fractals. It’s also possible to indicate that you have epilepsy. When you click on the “New” button, your static fractal becomes animated. You can save the final result and get an URL link to it.
By using the “Export image” feature, it’s easy to save your work in a PNG format on your device. To make it even more unique, you can enhance it by hitting the “Add Frame” button.
Verdict: If you have never used a similar service before, you might find its interface a bit challenging. To start, choose any fractal from the drop-down menu in the top right corner and click on the “Reset” button. As for today, this fractal generator offers 10 presets that allow for minimal adjustment. You can configure only the “Julia constant” parameter.
By clicking on the “Reset” button, you can apply the edits to see the final image. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to preview it if you click on the “Export” button. When you do it, you will see a blank window. There is no option for saving a PNG file. The best way to do it is to save a fractal in a browser, but there might be some issues with the size of an output image.
Verdict: By using this free fractals software, you will get access to an impressive array of pictures and animations. While it’s impossible to save any of them on your device, you can make your image more unique by animating it, adjusting the color, using the features that let you create random fractals and their trails. If you don’t like the final image, you can always reset it and start from scratch.
When you need to create and edit a fractal, make sure to click on the special buttons in the bottom part of the screen. They enable you to add new elements to your fractal. You can also use the sliders to enhance the result.
To save new elements, right-click the mouse. If you click the right mouse button and hold it, you will be able to copy the selected elements. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to animate your own fractals or undo the last edit.