Quartz Composer is a node-based visual programming language provided as part of the Xcode development environment in Mac OS X for processing and rendering graphical data. Due to it’s lightweight implementation, and ease of integration into VJ software like VDMX, Resolume, CoGe, and custom tools like Quartz Composer Performer, QC has become a staple of the VJing community.

Since I first got interested in VJing this year, I must admit that I’ve never had any desire to look into QC. Although it is undoubtedly versatile, there was a lot of speculation that QC could be discontinued by Apple with the forthcoming OSX. However, luckily, it seems that QC is still supported on Mavericks, but as no new version has been developed in the last two years, I wonder for how much longer.

Nevertheless, the QC community is vast and ever-growing, and not merely limited to live performance. For instance, QC and the Bangnoise datamosh plugins were used to create a trailer for the recent Superman movie, Man of Steel.

Visually I am much more interested in using film than computer generated material, which, within the VJ scene, is what I have invariably seen QC used for. Using Syphon, one could even connect QC into VIZZable and Ableton Live, so, technically, it would be quite easy to incorporate it within my performance rig. However, one could equally merely use Lua scripting for rendering graphics.

Although I realistically don’t see myself learning some QC, here, at least, is an introduction by Sergio Mora at a Processing Orlando Meetup for anyone who is interested.

If you’ve any pro/cons of using QC or suggestions on alternative approaches, let me know!