Code as Creative Medium: A Handbook for Computational Art and Design

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By Golan Levin and Tega Brain

An essential guide for teaching and learning computational art and design: exercises, assignments, interviews, and more than 170 illustrations of creative work

This book is an essential resource for arts educators and practitioners who want to explore code as a creative medium, and serves as a guide for computer scientists transitioning from STEM to STEAM in their syllabi or practice.

Code as Creative Medium provides a collection of classic creative coding prompts and assignments, accompanied by annotated examples of both historic and contemporary projects. These are enriched by more than 170 illustrations of creative work and a set of interviews with leading educators. Picking up where standard programming guides leave off, the authors highlight alternative programming pedagogies suitable for the art- and design-oriented classroom, including teaching approaches, resources, and community support structures.

The book first offers a collection of syllabus modules, each built around an open-ended assignment or prompt, and all tested, adapted, or observed by the authors over twenty years of practice and teaching. Examples have been selected for their explicability and for their representation of varied approaches. The book then presents brief programming exercises relevant to artists and designers, helping readers learn computational techniques to control elementary visual (or in some cases, auditory or textual) patterns and forms. Finally, a diverse group of educators—including Dan Shiffman, Lauren McCarthy, and Taeyoon Choi—discuss the challenges of teaching expressive and critical studio arts through the tools of software development.

Designed by Kyuha (Q) Shim and Minsun Eo

Published by MIT Press, 2021

Softcover, 288 pages, full color, 9 × 7 inches

ISBN: 978-0-262542-0-43

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