Particle Wave

Today we will learn this beautiful wave motion by Dave Whyte. I always find Dave Whyte’s work so inspiring, and you should definitely check them out.

This is so pleasing to look at, right? And you may think this could be a bit hard to implement that may have some bitter physics or math involved. But don’t be scared, let’s see the moving path of the particles first:

You will quickly find out that every particle is just moving on a circle with the exact same speed. Each of them has a slightly different offset against each other. And that’s it. As the Exploratorium explains, “Wave motion at the surface of water is made up of small circular motions of parcels of water.”

The Task

  • Implement it from scratch if you want to challenge yourself. Here is my port in p5.js.
  • Remix with your idea, try different things.
  • If you still get some extra time, I’d recommend Mark McClure’s wave model with depth as the extended reading. Dave Whyte has quite a few awesome work that using wave motions, see if you can implement them as well.

When you are all done, post your work on Twitter with the hashtag #codecember and #day16. Remember to include a link to the source code, so others can learn from your creation. We look forward to seeing your sketch!

Anthony & Pine