Creative coding is a way of producing art with code. Instead of thinking about coding in a way that is restricted to computer programming, it is thinking in terms of art, images, form and sound. In essence, it links what is typical of coding and what is typical of creating.
What do you think of when you think of art? Maybe the Mona Lisa, maybe a sculpture? Art, however, is very broad and is anything we use our creativity for along with specific components. These components are:
Coding can be used to produce art in terms of space. For example, you can code a program to move around and transform a space. In a 2D space, this will be on a canvas with XY coordinates, for a 3D canvas, this would use X, Y and Z coordinates.
We can think of art in terms of colour. In a coding landscape, we can attribute values to produce colours following the principles of RGB. For example, in OpenProcessing, adding 000,000,000 to the code would produce black, and adding 255,255,255 would produce white, with a wide range in between.
Next, we can also produce art through sound. The difference here is the axis which we work on is Decibels and Hertz. For creative coding, we can place a dot at 500hz at 10db to produce a sound, and in turn, a piece of art.
Lastly, art can be made using time, the same way Disney make their animations! To do this, code is created by producing a dot, moving it around, and then showing it in time. Each snapshot we produce would be called a frame and the rate we play it at is the frame rate.
Fancy having a go for yourself? you can start creatively coding here at OpenProcessing.