AuthorTopic: The Photopalette Activity Thread!  (Read 12281 times)

Offline PixelPiledriver

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The Photopalette Activity Thread!

on: May 06, 2012, 04:18:05 am
In an effort to break away from how I usually start an image I came up with an exercise.

Go to Google.
Find a photo or image:


Drop it into GraphicsGale.
Reduce to 16 colors:


Whatever colors you are dealt, use them.
Even if they are not the best colors that's what you get to work with.

The idea is that if the image you found is still legible after being reduced, and almost always is, then infinite legible images could be created from the same colors.

So I started out with something really plain:


And then just continued to work with it.

I've even cheated a bit.
I added 3 or 4 colors and kicked some out.
Here the current color pal is at 15 colors:



A trick to it is that the image is not actually "random".
You yourself get to choose the image, so you can effectively choose your color range.
Choose an image with people and you're bound to get some skin tones.
Choose an image with more reds and yellows if that's what you want to work with.
Choose an image with high or low contrast.

The element of surprise comes when you reduce to 16 colors.
The balance is not always what you expect.
Of course if the colors are really unappealing to you just go find a different image.

I'm kind of back and forth about the strictness of the exercise right now.
Obviously these colors aren't the brightest, but then again the idea was to use what I was given.
But I've added some, so why not just change them all?
Or just add another 16 on top so that the current dim colors will make the new ones shine even brighter.
But what about a 16 color limit?
Well... hmmm...
I'll have to create a series of rule sets in the future, ranging from extremely strict to extremely flexible.

Basically it boils down to this.
The more rules you follow, the more it's like a game.
But the less rules you follow, the more its like a process tool.
The choice is yours.
Both degrees are beneficial exercises.

The original palette can also be seen as a base.
Since I've already cheated some, here I've added colors and changed the contrast/brightness.
At this point I'm up to 24 colors:




This is about 6 hours work (yes I'm super slow).
There's plenty of messy areas and things that could be changed.
I plan on dropping in some more to finish it off.
Crits and edits are welcome of course.

Ideally you should post:
1. The photo
2. Reduced photo with original palette
3. Current palette
4. Your art!

If you get some time try it yourself!
It's an interesting exercise.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2012, 07:30:02 pm by PixelPiledriver »
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

Offline Hideon

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #1 on: May 06, 2012, 06:47:28 am
Cheater! :P
Ejmh... It's a nice idea, but maybe it's better to choice the image knowing what you want to pixel after, to make it a bit easier.
I tried to do it with a random image and I just love the colors I get, but to make for example the same image as you without the dark blue is hard.

So I think it will not work with all the images, obviously if you want to pixel a very green grassland don't choice an image of Sahara ::) XD
« Last Edit: May 06, 2012, 06:49:21 am by Hideon »

Offline Charlieton

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #2 on: May 06, 2012, 02:03:41 pm
I like the idea. This concept could work as a challenge/activity, no?
Det skulle vara lätt för mig att säga att jag inte gillar dig, men det gör jag; tror jag

Offline PixelPiledriver

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #3 on: May 06, 2012, 02:57:56 pm
It turns out I find this process to be really fun.
I decided not to cheat on this one, all of the colors are unchanged:





Also since I messed with the original palette of the fish girl anyway, I thought I'd at least try adding some colors and tweaking contrast/brightness.
It's up to 24 now:


I may continue to work on it from here instead of staying completely restricted.
The original idea of this was "to change the way that I start an image".
I think following strict rules or just using it as a base are both beneficial.

Quote
maybe it's better to choice the image knowing what you want to pixel after, to make it a bit easier.
That's certainly one way of going about it.
For these I came up with the idea after.
I like a little bit of unnatural color in art anyway, so it seems to work out not knowing what I'll draw at first.
But there's a pretty good chance I'll be drawing a female form of some sort.

Quote
I like the idea. This concept could work as a challenge/activity, no?
If more people are interested it could be fun.
The exact rules could be done many different ways.
Even if it doesn't become an activity give it a try.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2012, 03:10:27 pm by PixelPiledriver »
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

Offline blumunkee

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #4 on: May 06, 2012, 05:15:02 pm
Cool idea, but I think you really should tweak the colors. Unless you are sourcing from professional photographs, the color key, gamma, brightness, and contrast is going to be all off. Lots of photos out there from cheap disposable cameras. Also--in Photoshop at least--there are different methods you can use to generate a palette: selective, adaptive, etc. At the very least you should get reasonable contrast/black level set up first, then color reduce.

Looks fun, I might try. Is it alright for other people to try this here as a group thing, or do you want to keep this your own thread?
« Last Edit: May 07, 2012, 04:08:23 am by blumunkee »
ALL CREATURE WILL DIE AND ALL THE THINGS WILL BE BROKEN. THAT'S THE LAW OF SAMURAI.

Offline Charlieton

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #5 on: May 06, 2012, 05:18:41 pm
Looks fun, I might try. Is it alright for other people to try this here as a group thing, or do you want to keep this your own thread?
Which would actually make this an activity thread, which, as noted, I'm all for!
Det skulle vara lätt för mig att säga att jag inte gillar dig, men det gör jag; tror jag

Offline blumunkee

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #6 on: May 06, 2012, 05:27:04 pm
Ah yeah you are right. I was confused with this being in the Pixel Art section. If a mod would be so inclined, I'd like to see this moved to the Challenges and Activities thread. It's been a good while since we had a community palette challenge.
ALL CREATURE WILL DIE AND ALL THE THINGS WILL BE BROKEN. THAT'S THE LAW OF SAMURAI.

Offline PixelPiledriver

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #7 on: May 06, 2012, 05:37:08 pm
Quote
Looks fun, I might try. Is it alright for other people to try this here as a group thing, or do you want to keep this your own thread?
Quote
Which would actually make this an activity thread, which, as noted, I'm all for!

Sure I don't mind at all.
Just realize this forever means your art will be filed under "[Nudity] Fish Bone Girl"!
Actually... I think I can change the topic name?

Since this isn't official there's no strict rule set.
The more rules you follow, the more it's like a game.
But the less rules you follow, the more its like a process tool.
If it becomes an activity we can do something more strict.
Everyone has the same topic but can choose their own photo.
Or same photo but choose your own topic.
Or everyone has the same of both.
Something like that.

Cool to see that this is interesting to others.
For now just grab an image and have fun with it.
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

Offline Atnas

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #8 on: May 06, 2012, 06:16:07 pm
Moved and changed the topic. I'm looking forward to seeing more of these!

If you wouldn't mind updating your first post with the continuation of the fish lady piece, that'd be awesome. Just something a bit more complete for an introduction to the activity's main focus, for people who are seeing this for the first time.

Offline Facet

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Re: The Photopalette Activity Thread!

Reply #9 on: May 06, 2012, 08:22:59 pm
er, saw this in the PA section, went into critmode :hehe:. Interesting pallete process, I quite often use random photos as the starting point for a scheme, although, for mixing practice, I usually recreate them by eye.

Fish-lady stuff:

Lovely and whimsical, especially like those fish in the shading, reminisient of Mirre's piece in the feature chest. :y:

Whilst I like the idea of using a 'found' palette, you're not really taking full advantage of it here yet, mostly literal colour choices and there's little recycling, most prominently the skin is all pinks and none of those lovely blues which could be great as reflected light.

Not a lot of depth currently, I pushed the girl, (giantess?) a little higher in the frame, pulled the fisherman round to push things back a bit (repoussoir) and extended the horizon, the clouds too. hopefully more interesting compositionally also.

Anatomy stuff; foreshortened leg (sorry, scribbled over the fishes :'(), lengthened fish-levitating arm. Chucked down some green in the bottom left for better tonal balance.

Also, yo!

« Last Edit: May 06, 2012, 08:45:12 pm by Facet »