14.3. Fractal Explorer

14.3.1. Overview

Fig. 17.324. Example for the Fractal Explorer filter

Example for the Fractal Explorer filter

Filter Fractal Explorer applied

With this filter, you can create fractals and multicolored pictures verging on chaos. This filter lets you pick from a collection of presets that can be adjusted easily. In contrast, the IFS Fractal filter lets you change the fractal structure in more detail, at the cost of being more complicated.

14.3.2. Starting Fractal Explorer

Menu command location for this filter: FiltersRenderFractalsFractal Explorer….

14.3.3. Options

Fig. 17.325. Fractal Explorer filter options

„Fractal Explorer” filter options

The Fractal Explorer window contains two panes: on the left there is the Preview pane with a Zoom feature, on the right you find the main options organized in tabs: Parameters, Colors, and Fractals. Preview
Realtime preview

You can disable the Realtime preview if updating the preview is slow. In that case, you can update the preview by clicking the Redraw preview button.

By click-dragging the mouse pointer on the preview, you can draw a rectangle delimiting the area that will be zoomed.


These buttons allow you to Zoom In or Zoom Out the preview. The Undo button takes you back to the previous state. The Redo button will revert the last Undo. Parameters

This tab contains settings to adjust the calculation and select a fractal type.

Fractal Parameters

These sliders and input boxes allow you to set fractal spreading, repetition and aspect.

Left, Right, Top, Bottom

You can set fractal spreading between a minimum and a maximum, in the horizontal and/or vertical directions. Values are from -3.0 to 3.0.


With this parameter, you can set fractal iteration, repetition and so detail. Values are from 0.0 to 1000.0


With these parameters, you can change fractal aspect, in the horizontal (X) and/or vertical (Y) directions, except for Mandelbrot and Sierpinski types.

Open, Reset, Save

With these three buttons, you can save your work with all its parameters, open a previously saved fractal, or return to the initial state before all modifications.

Fractal Type

Here you can choose the fractal type you want. You can choose from Mandelbrot, Julia, Barnsley 1, 2 or 3, Spider, Man 'o'war, Lambda or Sierpinski. Colors

Fig. 17.326. Fractal Explorer filter options (Colors)

„Fractal Explorer” filter options (Colors)

This tab contains options for fractal color setting.

Number of Colors

Number of colors

This slider and its input boxes allow you to set the number of colors for the fractal, between 2 and 8192. A palette of these colors is displayed at the bottom of the tab. Actually, that's a gradient between colors in fractal: you can change colors with Color Density and Color Function options. Fractal colors don't depend on the colors of the original image. You can even use a white image for creating fractals.

Use loglog smoothing

If this option is checked, the band effect is smoothed.

Fig. 17.327. Loglog smoothing example

Loglog smoothing example

Color density

Red, Green, Blue

These three sliders and their text-boxes let you set the color intensity in the three color channels. Values vary from 0.0 to 1.0.

Color Function

For the Red, Green and Blue color channels, you can select how color will be treated:


Color variations will be modulated according to the sine function.


Color densities will vary according to cosine function.


Color densities will vary linearly.


If you check this option, function values will be inverted.

Color Mode

These options allow you to set where color values must be taken from.

As specified above

Color values will be taken from the Color Density settings.

Apply active gradient to final image

The colors used will be that of the active gradient. You can select another gradient by clicking on the button that shows the currently active gradient. Fractals

Fig. 17.328. Fractal Explorer sample fractals

„Fractal Explorer” sample fractals

This tab contains a list of fractals with their parameters that you can use as a model and adjust. To select one, you can either double click the name, or click the name and then press Apply.

The Refresh button allows you to update the list if you have saved your work (see the Parameters tab). You can remove a fractal from the list by clicking Delete.