To me this was the most important, and most fun part. I like the grid layout as it is perfect for doing a little more advanced animations on it.
My weapon of choice in this case was processing. I have used it enough and I know there are many ways I can get the data to the LEDs in the end.
In my animations I wanted to start with simple shapes and forms available in Processing as the effect I wanted was relatively simple and gradient / geometrix, as it will be displayed on LED matrix grid i.e. very low pixel density. The idea would be to draw the image in processing, then get pixel color at the desired positions and send it to the LED in the grid.
1 – Random Paths
I could later fill these with varying gradients.
And I played a little with animating these, but the movements are too unnatural as the lines need to keep within defined conditions to not cross each other and themselves.
2 – Concentric circles
I like the shapes / animations this forms simply by varying the circle-center and the circle size consecutively. Additionally the center can be stepped in a little rotation/ other change of direction for another dimension. Again these circles could then be filled with different colours / shades as demonstrated by their line-color.
I then combined these concentric circles with the a particle-animation for a naturally moving center.
First I created a new field/force which is a ring that repels the particle the closer it gets to it. This is very similar to an attracting center / gravity but only acts outside a certain radius.
I then draw filled circles around this point
finally I am interested in the central region as here there are a variety of effects
In the desired speed this would look something like
I do like this effect, but with just one fixed circle moving around the center it is a bit fixed an repetetive. I wanted something more versatile that can be oval or any shape. That fuses naturally around two circles merging them.