Anamorphic Cylindrical Art

I wanted to try my hand at creating a piece of anamorphic art in the style of the artist István Orosz.  He created several works in polar coordinates that appear normal when viewed in the reflection of a cylindrical mirror.  Below is an example of his impressive artwork.

István Orosz cylinder painting

To start off I gave this project to my students in my “Excursions in Mathematics” course.  They quickly came up with some interesting work.

I’m not much of an artist but after seeing what could be done with pencil and paper I decided to sketch my favorite video game character, MARIO!

That was fun, but given by inability to draw well I thought I would let my computer handle the work for my next piece of art.  To do so I took a quick photo of myself and imported it into Mathematica.  From there I applied a transformation of the photo into polar coordinates to give me the following picture.

I’m not sure which of the two photos is scarier.  Either way, I definitely needed a haircut at the time.

From there I converted the distorted image to greyscale and imported it into Easel where is was carved by UNH’s desktop cnc router Carvey.

This thing makes a mess but luckily it is completely enclosed so it is easy to clean up.  I decided to use a piece of two-color HDPE plastic to carve out my self portrait.

Overall, I am pretty pleased with this project.  It’s a little hard to make out but if you look closely you should be able to read the title I added above my head.  You can also make out a QR code that links to this webpage.  I think they will both make a nice addition to place in the window of my office at work.

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