When applying effects to text on the web, designers have traditionally been constrained to those provided by CSS. In the majority of cases this is entirely suitable – text is text right? Yet still, there exist numerous examples of designers combining CSS properties or gifs and images to create effects that evoke something more playful. Precisely here, Blotter exists to provide an alternative.
GLSL Backed Text Effects with Ease
Blotter provides a simple interface for building and manipulating text effects that utilize GLSL shaders without requiring that the designer write GLSL. Blotter has a growing library of configurable effects while also providing ways for student or experienced GLSL programmers to quickly bootstrap new ones.
Atlasing Effects in a Single WebGL Back Buffer
Blotter renders all texts in a single WebGL context and limits the number of draw calls it makes by using atlases. When multiple texts share the same effect they are mapped into a single texture and rendered together. The resulting image data is then output to individual 2d contexts for each element.
Rather than executing on a time based interval, Blotter’s internal animation loop uses requestAnimationFrame to match the browser’s display refresh rate and pause when the user navigates to other browser tabs; improving performance and preserving the battery life on the user’s device.
What Blotter Isn’t
Any texts you pass to Blotter can be individually configured using familiar style properties. You can use custom font faces through the @font-face spec. However, Blotter ultimately renders the texts passed to it into canvas elements. This means rendered text won’t be selectable. Blotter is great for elements like titles, headings, and texts used for graphic purposes. It’s not recommended that Blotter be used for lengthy bodies of text.Website
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