Overview

BasketIllusion is a Microsoft Windows program that makes it easy to design the basket illusion patterns and see them applied to vessels and platters. You start by specifying the initial parameters defining the basic attributes of the vessel. Once a vessel is created all of the parameters can be changed as the design is being developed. During the design process a 3D image of the design is updated so you can see what the final result will look like.

The basket illusion is created by partioning the surface into small cells with horizontal and vertical grooves on a vessel or circular and radial grooves on a platter. The grooves are darkened by wood burning and the cells are colored with india ink.

It is assumed that you have a general understanding of the basic concepts involved in creating a basket illusion turning. If that is not the case there are a number of videos on the internet describing the process along with many examples of existing patterns.

Features

  • Vessels and platters can have patterns defined for both the outside and inside.
  • The vessel profile is based on a Bezier curve defined by user specified points
  • A number of standard vessel profiles are available
  • Symmetric patterns are efficient to create
  • Colors are selected from the Windows internal color list
  • A pattern can be created and edited with the cells in a grid or a radial display
  • A pattern can be applied as defined or as the mirror image
  • A pattern can be offset to allow changing the alignment between the inside and outside patterns
  • Ability to change a color throughout a pattern
  • Display of the finished turned shape in a 3D view
  • Multiple ways to output relevant specifications for construction of the vessel
  • Saving the design to a serialized file
  • Opening a saved design file
  • Saving a pattern to a file so it can be applied to a different pattern or vessel
  • Saving a profile to a file so it can be applied to a different vessel
  • Ability to change any aspect of the design and see the impact on the final product
  • Application defaults automatically saved externally and retrieved when the program is started

General Concepts

  • All forms created in the program are refered to as vessels. The program can be used to design platters, bowls and vases. The vessels can be made from segmented or solid hollow forms.
  • A vessel has a relative profile that adjusts proportionally as the vessel height changes
  • The total number of pattern cells are based on the number of radial partitions and the profile length. For symmetric patterns you only have to define the unique portion of the pattern and the program will replicate it around the vessel
  • A vessel can optionally have an outside and inside pattern
  • A vessel can optionally have a solid row at the top and/or bottom for each pattern.
  • The patterns are defined in an editor where the cells are displayed in a grid or radial format

Getting Started

Run the program and select the ‘App Defaults’ Button and define the parameters that will apply to the application as a whole. Changes to some of the the parameters will affect the current vessel, others will only apply when creating a new vessel.

Next select [File][New] from the main menu.

A dialog will allow you to specify the basic parameters of the initial vessel. The initial vessel will have the same parameters defined for both the outside and inside surfaces. Once the vessel is created you can change the outside and inside parameters separately. Note that any of the parameters can be changed at any time after the vessel is created.

Profile - The initial vessel profile

Vessel Height - The maximum height of the vessel

Top Row Length - The distance along the profile from the top of the vessel to the first bead groove

Bottom Row Length - The distance along the profile from the bottom of the vessel (inside and outside) to the last bead groove

Number Radial Grooves - The number of grooves on the surface of the vessel around the center axis spanning 360 degrees

Groove Spacing - The distance between the turned grooves on the surface of the vessel

Pattern Symmetry - The number of times the pattern repeats around the center axis

Wood Color - the color of the wood used to create the vessel


Once the new vessel is created you can start making changes. The initial vessel assumes that both the inside and outside will have patterns applied to them. You can easily change this in the 'Parameters' view, a pattern can be applied to either side or both sides. Also the parameters are separate for both the outside and inside surfaces. As changes are made the two right side views display the current design. At any point during the design the current state can be saved to a file that can later be opened.

File Extensions

File Type

Extension

Vessel File

‘.bsk’

Pattern

‘.cpn’

Profile

‘.prf’

Program Constraints

The program enforces the following constraints

Field

Minimum

Maximum

Vessel Height (inches)

1

36

Vessel Base Thickness (inches)

0.25

1.0

Number of Profile Points

3

no limit

Outside Top Rim Length (inches)

0.125

1.0

Outside Bottom Rim Length (inches)

0.125

1.0

Outside Radial Grooves

12

360

Outside Groove Spacing (inches)

0.0625

0.5

Outside Pattern Symmetry

1

90

Inside Top Row Length (inches)

0.125

1.0

Inside Bottom Row Length (inches)

0.125

1.0

Inside Radial Grooves

12

360

Inside Groove Spacing (inches)

0.0625

0.5

Inside Pattern Symmetry

1

90

Wall Thickness (inches)

0.0625

0.5

Work Area Height (inches)

1.0

36.0

Work Area Width (inches)

1.0

36.0

Program Structure

The program is structured with a main menu at the top followed by a row of buttons under the menu and the remaining area divided into three view ports. The three areas have adjustable borders allowing the user to resize the viewports. The main viewport on the left is the work area and allows the user to select the content through the buttons. In this viewport you can select ‘App Defaults’, ‘Profile’, ‘Parameters’, ‘3D View’. The viewport in the upper right contains a 3D view of the current design. The viewport in the lower right displays the current profile.

  • File
    • Save – Save the current vessel (if the vessel has not been previously saved a dialog allow the user to provide a file name)
    • Save As – Save the current vessel with a new file name
    • Open – Open a dialog to select an existing saved vessel.
    • New – Create a new vessel by allowing the specification of profile, vessel height, top rim length, bottom rim length, number of radial grooves, groove spacing, pattern symmetry and wood color.
    • Output Plan
      • Print Pattern Grid Report - Print a file that contains the information describing the vessel along with images of the profile and the patterns in a grid format. This report is better for vessels such as vases bowls.
      • Print Pattern Radial Report - Print a file that contains the information describing the vessel along with images of the profile and the patterns in a radial format. This format is better for platters.
    • Close – Close the current vessel and allow the user to specify if the current vessel should be saved if changes have been made since the last time it was saved.
    • Exit – Close the program and if there is a current vessel allow the user to specify if the current vessel should be saved if changes have been made since the last time it was saved.
  • Tools
    • Outside Pattern
      • Replace Color... - Replace an existing color in the outside pattern with another color. The existing color list excludes the wood color
      • Color Cells Grid... - Color the outside pattern in a grid display
      • Color Cells Radial... - Color the outside pattern in a radial display
    • Inside Pattern
      • Replace Color... - Replace an existing color in the inside pattern with another color. The existing color list excludes the wood color
      • Color Cells Grid... - Color the inside pattern in a grid display
      • Color Cells Radial... - Color the inside pattern in a radial display
  • Skins
    • Blue / Dark – User interface has a dark background with blue buttoms and white text
    • Silver / Dark – User interface has a dark background with Silver buttoms and white text
    • Blue / Light – User interface has a light background with blue buttoms and black text
  • Help
    • View Help
    • About BasketIllusion

Application Defaults

The program saves the application defaults externally so any changes made will be retained when to program is closed. The following default will be immediately applied.

Field

Description

Units of Measure

Controls the display units in the application. (inches, centimeters or millimeters)

Vessel Folder

The default folder used for vessel files and plan output files

Pattern / Profile Folder

The default folder used for pattern and profile files

The following application defaults are used when creating a new vessel. The defaults are:

Field

Description

Work Area Height

The height of the display area in the profile view. This should be larger than the expected vessel height

Work Area Width

The width of the display area in the profile view. This should be larger than the expected vessel width

Vessel Wall Thickness

The wall thickness of the finished vessel

Parameters

The vessel parameters are properties that apply to the current vessel. This view contain 3 tabs, one for the overall vessel, one for the outside pattern and one for the inside pattern

Changes to the following fields apply to the current vessel. Changes to these values will be immediately applied to the current vessel.

General

Field

Description

Vessel Height

The maximum height of the vessel

Base Height

The height of the bottom of the inside of the vessel

Wall Thickness

The wall thickness of the finished vessel

Work Area Height

The height of the display area in the profile view. This should be larger than the expected vessel height

Work Area Width

The width of the display area in the profile view. This should be larger than the expected vessel width

Rim Color

The color of the rim. The rim is the half circle connecting the inner and outer profiles.

Groove Color

The color of the grooves

Outside Surface Tab

Field

Description

Top Row Length

The length from the top of the vessel to the first top groove. This section can have the pattern applied or it can have a solid color with no radial grooves

Bottom Row Length

The length from the bottom of the vessel to the first bottom groove. This section can have the pattern applied or it can have a solid color with no radial grooves

Number Radial Grooves

The number of straight grooves on the outside surface of the vessel

Groove Spacing

The distance between the grooves on the vessel surface

Pattern Symmetry

The number of repeating sections around the center axis. The number of radial grooves divided by the pattern symmetry determines the number of cells in a row in a repeating section

Mirror Image

A checkbox that indicates if the pattern mirror image is applied to the outside of the vessel

Pattern Offset

An integer number that specifies how many cells the pattern is shifted when it is displayed on the vessel. This value can be positive or negative

Solid Top Row

A checkbox that indicates if the top rim should be a solid color. If checked the top row is colored with the 'Top Row Color'. If not checked the top row has the top row of the pattern applied with radial grooves

Top Row Color

The color applied to the top row when the solid top row checkbox is checked

Solid Bottom Row

A checkbox that indicates if the Bottom row should be a solid color. If checked the bottom row is colored with the 'Bottom Row Color'. If not checked the Bottom row has the pattern applied with radial grooves

Bottom Row Color

The color applied to the Bottom row when the solid bottom row checkbox is checked

No Pattern

A checkbox that indicates if the surface has a pattern applied. If checked the entire surface is colored with the wood color and there are no grooves

Profile Length

A display only field that shows the outside profile length

Number of Rows

A display only field that shows the number of rows of the pattern that will be applied to the outside surface

Inside Surface Tab

Field

Description

Top Row Length

The length from the top of the vessel to the first top groove. This section can have the pattern applied or it can have a solid color with no radial grooves

Bottom Row Length

The length from the bottom of the inside profile to the first bottom groove. This section can have the pattern applied or it can have a solid color with no radial grooves

Number Radial Grooves

The number of straight grooves on the inside surface of the vessel

Groove Spacing

The distance between the grooves on the inside surface

Pattern Symmetry

The number of repeating sections around the center axis. The number of radial grooves divided by the pattern symmetry determines the number of cells in a row in a repeating section

Mirror Image

A checkbox that indicates if the pattern mirror image is applied to the inside of the vessel

Pattern Offset

An integer number that specifies how many cells the pattern is shifted when it is displayed on the vessel. This value can be positive or negative.

Solid Top Row

A checkbox that indicates if the top row should be a solid color. If checked the top row is colored with the 'Top Row Color'. If not checked the top row has the top row of the pattern applied with radial grooves

Top Row Color

The color applied to the top row when the solid top row checkbox is checked

Solid Bottom Row

A checkbox that indicates if the Bottom row should be a solid color. If checked the bottom row is colored with the 'Bottom Row Color'. If not checked the Bottom row has the pattern applied with radial grooves

Bottom Row Color

The color applied to the Bottom row when the solid bottom row checkbox is checked

No Pattern

A checkbox that indicates if the inside surface has a pattern applied. If checked the entire inside surface is colored with the wood color and there are no grooves

Profile Length

A display only field that shows the inside profile length

Number of Rows

A display only field that shows the number of rows of the pattern that will be applied to the inside surface

Profile

The profile view displays the outside profile along with the points that are used to create the profile. The display also includes the inside wall profile.

The image is displayed on a grid that is based on the units of measure defined in the ‘App Defaults’. The vertical center line is displayed as a red line.

The height of the profile is determined by the vessel height specified when the vessel was created or when the height is changed in the Parameters view General tab. The profile shape is independent of height and will proportionally change as the height is increased or decreased. Therefore increasing the height of the vessel increases the width.

The actual height of the vessel is based on the highest point of the total profile. The total profile includes the inner surface and the outer surface and the half circle that connects them.

The points are displayed as red circles and when the mouse is hovering over a point it turns green. When the point is green the point can be manipulated with the mouse.

The view can be zoomed in or out with the mouse wheel.

The points are stored as an ordered list and the user does not have the ability to change the order. When inserting a point the location in the list is based on the height of the new point. Using an ordered list of points allows the profile to rise above the vessel top. Unfortunately it also allows loops to be created in the profile that are not physically possible and causes calculation errors.

Modes

The Profile View has four modes that are selected on the view task bar and two icons for undo and redo options.

Pointer Mode

The pointer mode allows the modification of the profile curve. Point positions can be changed or points added or deleted.

Moving a Point

When hovering over a point the point will turn green and can be moved by holding the left mouse button down and dragging the point to a new location. As the point is being moved the shape will continually be evaluated and displayed. After a point is repositioned the inner wall profile and minimum ring profile is displayed.

Adding a Point

A new point can be added by positioning the mouse on the right side of the vessel and pressing the control key and left mouse button. The point will be inserted at the specified height. If the point is inserted at a location that is higher than the vessel height it will be inserted before the top point. Once the point is added the point can then be moved.

Removing a Point

When hovering over a green point and pressing the control key and left mouse button the point is removed and the resulting profile is reevaluated and displayed.

Horizontal Scale Mode

The horizontal scale mode allows the movement of all points to the right or left. Selecting the horizontal mode draws a box around the right side of the profile with a rectangular handle in the middle of the right side. Position the cursor over the handle and hold the left mouse button down to scale the profile as the mouse moves.

Pan Mode

The pan mode allows the viewable area of the Profile View to be repositioned by holding the left mouse button down and moving the mouse.

Measure Mode

The measure mode provides a measurement between two locations by selecting an initial location by depressing the left mouse button and then dragging the mouse with the left mouse button down. A line is drawn with the current distance displayed.

Undo

You can undo changes to the profile points while the view is active. The icon becomes enabled when there are changes to undo.

Redo

If previous changes have been undone they can be redone unless a manual change has been made. This icon becomes enabled when there are entries in the list that have been undone.

Buttons

Change Profile

Select a profile from a set of defined profiles and update the current vessel.

Export Profile

Save the profile to a file.

Import Profile

Retrieve a profile from a file and update the current vessel. Note that profiles from the SegTurn program can be imported.

Options

Guides

Optional gray guide lines can be drawn based on the golden ratio of ~1.618.

Selection

Description

None

No guides are displayed

Height L

A golden rectangle with the height as the longer length. Also inner lines based on the golden ratios

Height S

A golden rectangle with the height as the shorter length. Also inner lines based on the golden ratios

Width L

A golden rectangle with the width as the longer length. Also inner lines based on the golden ratios

Width S

A golden rectangle with the width as the smaller length. Also inner lines based on the golden ratios

Display Parameters

Wall Thk

The current wall thickness of the vessel.

Height

The current height of the vessel.

Width

The current width of the vessel.

Context Menu

Clicking on the display surface with the right mouse button opens the context menu.

Item

Description

Zoom Full Extent

Fill the current display space to the full extent allowed

Undo

Undo last profile change

Redo

Redo the last profile change that was undone

Pattern Editors

The pattern editor allows you to specify a pattern that is applied over the entire vessel. The editor displays the cells determined by the symmetry parameter and the number of turned rows. The cells are initially the wood color. The editor has a current color that is applied to the desired cells to create the pattern. Once the editor is closed the pattern is applied over the entire vessel

There are two different editor displays, grid or radial. The grid editor displays the pattern in a grid format with the top row associated with the top of the profile. The bottom row applies to the bottom of the profile. The radial editor displays the pattern in a radial pattern with the top row associated with the top of the profile and the bottom row applies to the bottom of the profile. The editors are interchangable but they are suited to different vessel types.

The cells are identified and stored with a row and column number with columns numbered from left to right and rows from top to bottom. Once a cell is colored it is stored and not deleted even if the number of rows or columns are reduced and it does not appear in the current pattern.

The inside pattern is applied in a clockwise direction when looking down from the top. The outside pattern is applied in a clockwise direction when looking up from the bottom.

Grid Pattern Editor Radial Pattern Editor

Tools

The tools are used to modify the segment woods, modify the view or undo / redo changes.

Tool

Image

Description

Selector

The pointer tool is used to make changes to the color of a cell or to select a cell or group of cells.

  • Clicking the left mouse button on a cell will change the cell color to the current color.
  • Clicking the left mouse button while holding the Alt key down will change the current color to the color of the cell clicked on
  • Clicking the left mouse button while holding the Ctrl key down will select the cell or deselect it if it is currently selected. The color of selected segments can be copied to other segments
  • Clicking the left mouse button while holding the Shift and Ctrl keys down will deselect any segments that are currently selected
  • Holding the left mouse button down while moving the mouse will create a selection rectangle that will select any cell completely contained within the rectangle

Pan

The pan tool allows the user to reposition the view. This is useful when zooming in to specific areas of the display

Undo

Undo the last operation in the operation chain

Redo

Redo the last operation undone in the operation chain

Parameters

Parameters

Description

Current Color

A drop down control that allows the selection of the current color that is used when clicking on cells

Show Extended Columns

A checkbox that controls the display of read only columns on the right and left side of the pattern that helps with creating a pattern that smoothly transitions from one repeating group to the next. The right side of the repeating group pattern includes a couple of cells from the left side of the next repeating group and the left side includes a couple of cells from the right side of the previous repeating group pattern

Show Data While Moving

A checkbox that controls how the image is displayed when panning or zooming in or out. By default the image moves smoothly as the mouse moves. For patterns with a large number of cells unchecking this will help with performance by not redisplaying the image until the move is complete

Aspect Ratio W/H

A text box that allow the specification of the aspect ratio of the cell width to height. Values from 0.25 to 8.0 are allowed. This applies to the grid display only

Row #

A read only text box that displays the row number of the cell currently under the pointer

Column #

A read only text box that displays the column number of the cell currently under the pointer

Buttons

Parameters

Description

Export Pattern

Export the pattern to a file. The file contains the row number, column number and color for each cell in the pattern whose color is not the wood color

Import Pattern

Import a pattern from a file. The imported file does not have to have the same number of rows or columns that the display has. If the display has a corresponding cell in the imported file the the color is applied otherwise the cell is defaulted to the wood color

Ok

Accept the changes to the pattern and close the window

Cancel

Ignore any changes made to the pattern and close the window

Context Menu

Menu Item

Description

Paint Row

Paint all cells in the current row with the 'Current Color'

Paint Column

Paint all cells in the current column with the 'Current Color'

Paint Diagonal Positive Slope

Paint all cells with the 'Current Color' that form a diagonal with a positive slope

Paint Diagonal Negative Slope

Paint all cells with the 'Current Color' that form a diagonal with a negative slope

Shift Pattern Cells...

A dialog is opened that allows lets the user decide the direction (Left, Right, Up or Down) and the number of rows or cells to shift. The cells that do not have a corresponding cell are painted with the wood color

Copy Selected

Copy all cells that are currently selected. The selected cell that the pointer was over when the right mouse buttom was clicked becomes the source position

Paste Selected

Paste the copied cells. The cell that the pointer was over when the right mouse buttom was clicked becomes the target position.

Undo

Undo the last operation

Redo

Redo the last operation undone

Zoom Full Extent

Zoom the display to the full extent

Remove Pattern

Remove the pattern

Mouse Operations

Operation

Description

Left Mouse button

Used for selection and tool operations etc.

Right Mouse Button

Open the context menu

Mouse Wheel

The mouse wheel is used to zoom in or out of the display

3D View

The 3D view displays the vessel as it would look after it was turned, the grooves darkened by wood burning, and the cells 'painted' with ink. The image supports 360 degree rotation along any axis with the left mouse button. Holding the left mouse button down and moving the pointer rotates the image in the direction of the movement. Image zoom in and out is performed with the right mouse button. Holding the right mouse button down and moving the pointer up zooms in on the image and moving the pointer down zooms out. You can zoom into the inside of the vessel or zoom out until the image disappears.

Output Plan

There are two different ways to output plan information for the vessel. The different outputs provide information that is targeted to different types of vessels. As an example the grid report is better suited to vessels shaped like a vase and the radial report is better suited to platters and bowls. In any case the choice of which report to use is up to the user as both reports contain the same information

Print Pattern Grid Report

This output provides a page of information about the overall vessel and a page for each pattern and the profile.

The pattern images in the report are depicted as they would appear on the surface of the vessel.

This report can be printed to a 'pdf' file. Opening the file in a browser allows review prior to printing. The print functionality of a browser also allows printing select pages or page ranges

Print Pattern Radial Report

This output provides a page of information about the overall vessel and a page for each pattern and the profile.

The pattern images in the report are depicted as they would appear on the surface of the vessel.

This report can be printed to a 'pdf' file. Opening the file in a browser allows review prior to printing. The print functionality of a browser also allows printing select pages or page ranges

 

Copyright 2020 A.W.Deley