Here goes another rant.

As I’ve been a little away from the fractal world for the past years, I am doing some updatings on my pretty old fractal links and lists of resources and I’m trying to find new stuff like tutorials, galleries, etc. that might be appearing here sometime as most of my old links like that seem to be dead. So I went to look for “UF tutorials”. “OK. Here are some. Let’s try this one at DA” I said.

After scrolling past a lot of basic stuff like how to make masks/how to make gradients kind of thing, I see some tutorials like “how I did this image”. Let’s try these. First the basic warnings like “I won’t show you the exact parameters” blah blah blah. Well if you are teaching me how to reproduce something – and not something similar, you told me you were going to teach me how to do THAT image not something LIKE it – I’d expect that some of these references would appear. OK, no problem, let’s move on.

Here is where the fun (and annoying) part begins. Of course, there are no references to anything but the individual layers, they seem to let you see what the final results will be… just at the end (I guess they have a valid point – keep reading!). “Here goes layer x, use this formula with this colouring method” is all that is said. And also “this layer was done for/to… (add here some complicated explanation why your image MUST have that layer)”. Don’t judge yet what might happen to the final image just for the looks of the individual layers, as it’s most of the time not what a final image will look like at all. Some pretty images are the result of a quite weird layers combination.

After a dozen or more layers (sometimes way more) and – to me – some quite randomic explanation about certain details (I doubt they are really sure about what they are saying), they present you the final image. And it looks like übercrap. Or at least it looks like something that could have been done with one or 2 layers the most which much less talking. What are the “amazing textures” you said that “layer XX” would add? Where are they? I must be really old and getting blind, because I can’t see all these details you explained so carefully about. I might have found just a bad tutorial from a bad artist, too. I hope so. Nothing personal.

Since I started this “self-updating” process, all I’ve seen hasn’t impressed me a bit. I still think I am right at the exact same day where I had stopped making my images. Nothing has changed but a few more new Apophysis plugins were added to the melting pot. And the more I see these things, the more I (re)learn that I should ignore them.

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