Sometimes I have a vague outline of a plan before I create a Mesmeric piece, however other times like this one, just came from an organic exploration of simple curiosities. Initially I was intrigued by the geometric make-up of plants, flowers and petals - I used this as a kicking off point to experiment with ways to conform them to polyhedral shapes. Along this path I was struck by the simple yet satisfying motion of a single leaf twisting on its vertical axis - it reminded me of leaves blowing in the wind - this was the anchor and starting point for this Mesmeric.
From the twisting leaf form, I played around with different combinations of radial arrangements using duplicates of the same leaf motion. During this process I came upon the idea to figure out how I could turn 5 leaves in a radial arrangement into a pentagon - the idea of going from a definitive mathematical shape into an organic form seamlessly was a challenge that sparked my interest. Breaking down the leaf into its most minimal topology I was able to blend smoothly between a quad polygon (a pentagon subdivided by a central point creates 5 quad polygons).
With my animation for the pentagon-to-leaf array set I was then able to apply this idea to each face of a dodecahedron (made up from multiple pentagons), adding a slight timing offset each time. The layers within the structure were created with further duplications and timing offsets - ensuring I kept track of these timings to create the perfect loop. There is very little keyframed animation in this piece, the only motion I created is for the leaf twist and the transformation of topology from the leaf to the quad segment of each pentagon.
© 2021 Mark Lindner