marble-dyed fabric

Ink Marbling

marble-dyed fabric

Marbling refers to painting techniques for creating a stone-like appearance or intricate flowing designs.

Marbling originated in Asia more than 800 years ago and spread to Europe in the 1500s, where it was used for endpapers and book covers.

To the right is a detail from a marbled necktie from Chena River Marblers. Some other sites with marbled images are:

My web-pages are about generating marbling designs mathematically.

A paper I wrote with Shufang Lu, Xiaogang Jin, Hanli Zhao, and Xiaoyang Mao has been published by IEEE:

Lu, S.; Jaffer, A.; Jin, X.; Zhao, H.; Mao, X.; ,
"Mathematical Marbling,"
IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications
Nov.-Dec. 2012 (vol. 32 no. 6) pp 26-35
ISSN: 0272-1716

Jiayi Xu, Xiaoyang Mao, Xiaogang Jin, Aubrey Jaffer, Shufang Lu, Li Li, Masahiro Toyoura,
Hidden message in a deformation-based texture,
Vis Comput (2015) 31: 1653.

Our paper about solid marbling is accepted for publication:

Shufang Lu, Xiaogang Jin, Aubrey Jaffer, Fei Gao, Xiaoyang Mao,
"Solid Mathematical Marbling",
IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications
vol. , no. , pp. 1, 5555, doi:10.1109/MCG.2016.42

Most recent work on the fluid-dynamics of short strokes:

Aubrey Jaffer,
Oseen Flow in Ink Marbling (pdf),
arXiv:1702.02106 [physics.flu-dyn]

virtual ink marbling The Mathematics of Marbling
serpentine marbling Serpentine Marbling
ink marbling Scallops and Clams
marbled torus Marbling the Torus
curved banding Textile Designs
rolling marble Transfer Effects
marbling Dropping Ink
pattern-welding Pattern Welding
spiral marbling Gallery


The Mandelbrot set and related curves display banding, but have only a couple parameters affecting them. These couple parameters change disparate features throughout the image. Although one can affect the drawing, one cannot control it.

Also, fractals' self-similarity down to infinitesimal scales is more akin to the Horned Sphere counterexample than to the simply connected homeomorphisms explored here.

Copyright © 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2016 Aubrey Jaffer

I am a guest and not a member of the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.  My actions and comments do not reflect in any way on MIT.

agj @
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