Critique => Pixel Art => Topic started by: tiger_robocop on July 08, 2019, 02:52:05 am

Title: [WIP] Anyone knows how to make hands?
Post by: tiger_robocop on July 08, 2019, 02:52:05 am

I'm trying to make some claw-like hands for Undyne over there, but anything I try looks weird or out of place. While my method of bashing my head against the keyboard for hours until it start looks good has its merit, I thought I should suck it up and ask for help this time around.

If anyone has a tutorial for making hands, especially pixelated hands, I'd appreciate it.

Also if anyone has ideas how to improve what little of the image is already done, especially when it comes to the pallete choice, I'd appreciate it as well.
Title: Re: [WIP] Anyone knows how to make hands?
Post by: daramon on July 08, 2019, 12:12:35 pm
My posts always come with the caveat that I'm just a beginner myself, and I'm doing this in my lunch break. I hope you get the idea!

I love the shapes of the legs and feet, and the hair outlines. Some good work there. There were a couple of things I wanted to have a go at though:


Instead of pillow shading the hair, a technique I see a lot is adding highlights with rough edges in the direction of the hair strands. It brings some life and body to the element and suggests texture. There's usually a lighter shade doing the same kind of shapes over a larger area as well. I added a shade for the highlights, as white looks too glaring.

Her left arm (our right) looked way too long! With that hand I'm trying to do as little hand work as possible, so it wraps neatly round the shaft and out of the way where our eyes can't see it!

I see what you mean about claws though! Very difficult to get good shapes. I've added a lighter shade to help define the "fingers" and another one nearer white for the claw tips. I'd like more time on this, I'm not 100% convinced about it myself! Three claws looks more alien to me though, and is easier to draw. ;)

Finally there was a fair amount of noise in the teeth and not much information. I simplified it a bit and tried to suggest a little bit of an indent from the plane of the face. It may not be to your taste.

What I didn't have time to work on:

I think her left calf and foot need looking at as well, shading-wise. With the relative lengths of the thigh and lower leg, the left foot should be going quite a bit backwards from the knee. That would mean we'd see the top of the shoe as it braces against the ground, but we see the side. This ends up making my brain think her left leg has a very short lower leg and a very long thigh. In general, making things darker when they're further back (and brighter in the foreground) helps... If you want me to show you what I mean, let me know.
Title: Re: [WIP] Anyone knows how to make hands?
Post by: tiger_robocop on July 08, 2019, 04:35:54 pm
Thank you! I'll use your claws as a base, and the hair is definitely an improvement over the pillow shading.

About the teeth, I see what the problem is with too much noise, but I wanted to convey some sort of shark tooth smile, like so;


I'm already taking some liberties with the design (I'm pretty sure Undyne doesn't have claws), but her teeth are like, a defining feature. I'll work on them some more to see if I can make them less noisy but still noticeably tooth-y

Title: Re: [WIP] Anyone knows how to make hands?
Post by: daramon on July 08, 2019, 09:59:55 pm
I see.

This may be a bit better for teeth. I've tried to give them some shape.


Again I added a highlight shade, as well as a mid-tone to make lines seem thinner. You could see if you can reuse one highlight shade in different areas to save colors if you like. That can give some interesting color effects as well.

It feels like your original palette was missing some highlight shades. I tend to over-darken my image as well if I'm not careful. You may want to brighten your palette overall...

Looking at the reference image a couple of things stand out:

The ear/fin is covered by hair in yours. As you can't see the shape, unless you know the character well it looks like misplaced head parts. I think she needs a hair cut so you can really show off this feature.

Also, the hair casts a shadow over the face. This is a great opportunity to provide some 3D information and give the face some more shape. Your shadow isn't as bold, so provides very little depth information.
Title: Re: [WIP] Anyone knows how to make hands?
Post by: tiger_robocop on July 08, 2019, 10:04:18 pm
Thank you so much, I will try to fix the everything implemented.
Title: Re: [WIP] Anyone knows how to make hands?
Post by: daramon on July 10, 2019, 03:47:00 pm
A quick point as you asked for help with palettes. Apart from the overall darkness and lack of highlight shades, have a quick look at the reference picture. You'll see that the highlights are generally warmer (more reds in this case) and the shadows colder (more blue).

This is a good tip for picking pixel art palettes. Take a mid shade of the color you want. Don't oversaturate it! but don't make it too dark either. Now create your darker shades by taking down the value and shifting the hue towards a colder color. Do the opposite with your lighter shades.

I cheat; Pyxel Edit provides a range of shades with this kind of hue shift in the palette editor. :)

The hue shift adds interest and makes the final image more appealing. You can experiment with saturation shift as you get darker and lighter as well. Saturating light and mid tones can get a bit eye-searing, so be careful.
Title: Re: [WIP] Anyone knows how to make hands?
Post by: tiger_robocop on July 12, 2019, 03:17:09 am
I'll attempt hue shifting more, then. It's something I had learned about, but whenever I try doing it my brain goes "you fool, you don't know what you are meddling with", and then I hue shift so little it almost looks like the same color.