Head-Tripping 3D Art of the Early 1990s

May 29th, 2011 by Benj Edwards

Head-Tripping 3D Art of the Early 1990s on PCMag.com

Up now on PCMag is a slideshow I made showcasing freaky-weird 3D amateur computer art of the early 1990s. It’s composed mostly of GIF files from the BBS era that I’ve been collecting for some time now.

Here’s a snippet of the introduction:

Back in the early 1990s, when 3D computer-generated art was still a new thing, a brave new breed of amateur artists emerged. They took up early 3D CGI (computer generated imagery) tools and created graphical works that they then shared on dial-up BBSes and CompuServe.

Over the years, I’ve collected dozens of these now-vintage images, and I recently noticed that many of them are, well, more than a little bizarre.

When you’re done checking out the slideshow, feel free to post your fondest memories of vintage CGI graphics. And if you have any bizarre 3D CGI images of your own to share, please post a link.

5 Responses to “Head-Tripping 3D Art of the Early 1990s”

  1. Cozfer Says:

    I remember creating my own ray-tracing images in college in the early 90s using a freeware program (probably pov-ray). Would start the rendering process on my computer and then go to bed…by morning it would be about done. Also ended up writing my own ray-tracing program in Pascal for an animation class for my computer science degree. Fun times! Probably did this while jamming the “The Mind’s Eye” on the VCR

  2. Xyzzy Says:

    I love the humorous descriptive text you used for the pics this time, Benj… You pretty much read my mind (and made me laugh out loud) with “Only a gram of crack would help this make sense.”

    I’ve never created 3d art, but the pictures remind me of an odd video of similarly semi-abstract computer animation clips that my 8th grade science class watched around 1991. (All I can recall clearly was that one of the clips included the checkered Amiga ball.)

    I couldn’t find the the video, but my searching has me convinced that the weird graphics in your slideshow must have been created after the artists viewed this old Amiga scene demo too many times:

  3. svofski Says:

    No POVRay story is complete without Rusty the Robot 😀

  4. arlandi Says:

    all of these weird ray traced gifs really reminded me of Constable Odo from Deep Space 9…

  5. ashtarxd Says:

    Why were these saved as GIFs mostly? Disk space saving purposes or something else?

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