The SparkFun Guide to Processing

SparkFun Guide to Processing

Create Interactive Art with Code
by Derek Runberg
August 2015, 312 pp.
Full Color

You'll also get a SparkFun sticker sheet with your order, while supplies last!

"An excellent primer on this Javaesque language for multimedia art, especially for casual or younger programmers. A quick read through the relevant chapter will have you—within minutes—visualizing data downloaded from online repositories or communicating with an Arduino microcontroller."
—IEEE Spectrum

Look Inside!


Processing is a free, beginner-friendly programming language designed to help non-programmers create interactive art with code.

The SparkFun Guide to Processing, the first in the SparkFun Electronics series, will show you how to craft digital artwork and even combine that artwork with hardware so that it reacts to the world around you. Start with the basics of programming and animation as you draw colorful shapes and make them bounce around the screen. Then move on to a series of hands-on, step-by-step projects that will show you how to:

  • Make detailed pixel art and scale it to epic proportions
  • Write a maze game and build a MaKey MaKey controller with fruit buttons
  • Play, record, and sample audio to create your own soundboard
  • Fetch weather data from the Web and build a custom weather dashboard
  • Create visualizations that change based on sound, light, and temperature readings

With a little imagination and Processing as your paintbrush, you’ll be on your way to coding your own gallery of digital art in no time! Put on your artist’s hat, and begin your DIY journey by learning some basic programming and making your first masterpiece with The SparkFun Guide to Processing.

The code in this book is compatible with Processing 2 and Processing 3.

Next up: The Arduino Inventor's Guide!

Author Bio 

Derek Runberg works in the Department of Education at SparkFun Electronics, where he develops curriculum and materials for workshops and classrooms alike. Before joining SparkFun, Derek taught a middle school technology course centered on Processing and Arduino.

SparkFun Electronics is an online retail store that sells electronic parts for DIY projects. SparkFun is dedicated to making the world of electronics more accessible to the average person. In addition to selling products, SparkFun also offers classes and online tutorials through its Department of Education.

Table of contents 

Foreword by Nathan Seidle

Project 0: Getting Started with Processing
Project 1: Pixel Art
Project 2: Holiday Card
Project 3: A First Dynamic Sketch
Project 4: Interactive Time-Based Art
Project 5: Enter the Matrix
Project 6: Image Processing with Collage
Project 7: Playing with Text
Project 8: Two Drawing Programs
Project 9: A Maze Game
Project 10: Manipulating Movies and Capturing Video
Project 11: Audio Processing with Minim
Project 12: Building a Weather Dashboard with JSON Data
Project 13: Using Sensors with Processing and Arduino


View the detailed Table of Contents (PDF)
View the Index (PDF)


Featured in The Denver Post

"The book is well organized. I appreciated the introductory overview of the book as well as the section on the history of Processing in the first chapter."
—Elie Zananiri, Senior Developer for Processing