Wednesday, January 30

Presstube Screensaver, by a man called James Patterson is one of those sites that hangs about in your bookmarks forever. I must've shoved it in there years ago. Every so often, as with countless other things I've saved, I'll have a look to see what's new. Long enough has usually passed that I can't remember what the bookmarks even vaguely link to, and clicking the damn thing reveals a redesigned site with a bunch of new stuff to look at. It's a nice little moment of exploration and recognition.

The difference with Presstube is that I'm exposed to Patterson's work daily thanks to his amazing screensaver which I installed after one of those visits a long time ago. It's a fluid, randomly generating, black on white animation constructed from odd little drawings that hypnotically grow and morph into one another. It's the best screensaver I've ever seen. Every so often it'll go crazy and surge with movement and splashes of colour. It's the bees knees. I've made a little photo of it running on my Mac:

Looks good eh? All nice and white. Obviously it really zings when it's moving, but you get the idea. It's available for download for Mac and PC - HERE. As with all of the Presstube animations, and thanks to my ignorance of how Flash works, it boggles my brain trying to work out how he makes the damn things. Fair enough having the patience to create a line animation with a start and end, but making something that constantly changes and has a seemingly endless bank of clever drawings is too much for me to get my head around.

Go and have a look about the site. There are lots of great things to see. Especially his animations on the Projects page. He is a patient man.

EDIT: The screensaver stopped working on newer Macs for a while, but it's back! You can get it here. I also have a new blog post about it too.


  1. i would love this, but it says i can't run it on my computer. i'm running a macbook pro with leopard. is it not leopard compatible?

  2. AnonymousJuly 23, 2010

    i get the same problem and seems that its really cool so i want it to be in my desktop with wallsaver

  3. Saver is working again on newer machines. See edit to post above.

  4. Dude's a genius, from what I've seen it's coded in Flash, but rendered as bitmaps, the animation is frame by frame, but there's actionscript randomising it. Mad, mad stuff, still as amazing now as it was when I first saw it.