Software engineer and artist Casey Reas inspired a digital revolution with the creation of the open source creative software, Processing (co-developed with Ben Fry), which allows users to draw using code. Because of its low barrier to entry, the program is accessible to almost anyone – no coding experience required to get started, and before you know it, you’ll have your computer sketching circles and squiggles.
The program is used by designers, artists, filmmakers, and architects alike, with seemingly boundless applications and possibilities for art-making of all kinds. For instance, last summer Reas himself used Processing to create an impressive visual set for Yeasayer’s tour environment.
For more on Reas, his artistic practice and the origins of Processing, watch our profile on him above.
The fascinating new documentary Hello World! Processing explores the implications and almost infinite possibilities of this kind of creative software and elaborates on how, contrary to popular assumption, “rules and codes do not hinder the chance to create.” Computer code, which was once perceived as a cold, calculated, emotionless form of expression, is now recognized as a profound source of creative and even organic output. Accessible programs like Processing, which allow novices to get started with coding fairly easily, are growing more important each day in our pursuit for new creative forms.
With the anticipated release of Processing 2.0—which is currently only available as a Beta version—there’s no better time to catch up on the ins-and-outs of Processing. If you’re a Processing pro, follow @ProcessingOrg to keep abreast of the latest updates.