Peacock II

Peacock II

Day 2 of a going-away tribute to‘s Peacock


Most people know of Photoshop, that Big Daddy of artmaking software.  I love Photoshop, rely on it, do some of my best work with it.  So why do I care about Peacock?

 You work differently in Peacock.  You start with a canvas in a workspace and you attach one of the hubs to the top.  Here it’s the Wave Generator.

Now I’ve added another hub to the chain,  You can see what a difference the choice in new hubs can make.

Here I’ve used the Wave Generator hub on top to color the wave pattern.  We stick with the Convolution hub choice and add yet another hub, the MiniMax.  You can see that the order you place things in a chain makes a big difference.

One major plus in Peacock is you  never travel away from your workspace off to a filter editor.  It’s plug and play.  Imagine getting immediate feedback.  A hub’s controls stay at your fingertip — you can tweak, experiment, dare.  Work is fluid and swift.    More than any other software I know, Peacock is fun.  It’s a playground.

Here are three tweaks of the Wave Generator hub.

Any one of these could have been the topmost hub in the examples above.  Which would change every hub that followeed.  Immediate feedback.  Yes.


•  You save differently in Peacock.   By this I mean you save the image and complete instructions.  Imagine coming back to a Photoshop file a year later and figuring out how you did it.  Even if you’ve saved the layers, they’re mute.  Peacock thinking stays on view.

Interesting side effect of this was that each of us in the online community could learn from opening another artist’s Peacock file.  And did we!  So that there was a social aspect native to the software design.


sample Peacock file created May 11, 2008 —  one month after I joined Aviary.


Here’s where I fit into the land of Peacock.  My onsite name is bassp.   As I explained there,

Perhaps to you my Aviary name bassp sounds like something an angry lizard might blurt but it’s really short for the term bas-space.  To me it represents the nuances between flat 2D space and the roundedness of 3D.  OK, my peculiarity.

When I joined Aviary in April 2008 it was still young.  The online-only software was all beta (still is) and built on the Adobe Flash platform (part of its downfall).   Peacock put a new gleam in my heart’s eye.  Beta software, very much still under construction, and users were encouraged to give feedback.  New features would appear inside the app, new wonders, it would be like Christmas all year long.  Thrilling.  I was agog.

I’ve created 5311 files on what’s now called  Most were made in Peacock.  Strikes me as kind of wacky but they just accumulated.

Cue the slap with the wet washcloth: the website, all its apps and its whole community will disappear come Sept 15.  I’m in the final stages of saving all those files — and from now until the end I’ll be celebrating something grand.



To be continued….


Today through September 15th when Peacock. and the rest of including its community will disappear.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *