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Animated Bézier Curves

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A Primer on Bézier Curves

These animations illustrate how a parametric Bézier curve is constructed. The parameter t ranges from 0 to 1. In the simplest case, a first-order Bézier curve, the curve is a straight line between the control points.

In order to draw things in 2D, we usually rely on lines, which typically get classified into two categories: straight lines, and curves. The first of these are as easy to draw as they are easy to make a computer draw. Give a computer the first and last point in the line, and BAM! straight line. No questions asked. Curves, however, are a much bigger problem. While we can draw curves with ridiculous ease freehand, computers are a bit handicapped in that they can't draw curves unless there is a mathematical function that describes how it should be drawn.

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