Critique => Pixel Art => Topic started by: OneLongWord on December 02, 2007, 05:42:15 pm

Title: My First
Post by: OneLongWord on December 02, 2007, 05:42:15 pm
Hi, Long time admirer, First time poster and pretty much first time i've tried pixeling with effort.

I'd just like to say, there are alot of talented people here and I think there is so brilliant work, also alot of good crit going on.

With that said, On to my work, I hope you guys (and girls?) can give me some good advice:


I went for ISO for my first, I don't know if it's any good, too big, too small? You tell me, You're the experts. (it's obviously still in the "Work in Progress" stage at the moment)

It's based on where I live so I'm trying to make it as much like that as possible. I'm using my own knowledge for reference.

I don't understand all your fancy colour use, so this is the part were you all yell at me for my pallette.

Title: Re: My First
Post by: CrazyMLC on December 03, 2007, 04:56:57 am
it looks great in the isometric aspect.
but you didn't really shade it yet.
your palette is fine, if anything you need more colors.
but you need to use your colors more, and shade it more. it almost looks like you took a line tool, and filled in everything.
Also, you don't need to follow everything around you strictly, use your imagination! try to make things up, do what ever you want!
use the darker colors to shade the lighter parts, etc. etc..
also, in my opinion the image too big to do serious pixel art, make it a bit smaller, unless you want to have to spend 3 hours making it look good. :/

Great for a first though! i cant remember my first pixel art, but it was probably worse than this!

though I'm not the best Pixel artist here, so you don't need to listen to me. ^_^
Title: Re: My First
Post by: bengo on December 03, 2007, 05:02:07 am
Crazy is right, even though he does consider himself a "Pixel artist in training". You haven't put much effort into this, once we see more than we can start to seriously crit.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: Seele07 on December 03, 2007, 06:55:42 am
Hello OneLongWord,

you can try to practise drawing on paper too, if you like. It can help you a lot, because your understanding of forms and shading will be better and better, if you do - and you can draw everywhere, where you can find a piece of paper and a pen  :) Maybe you buy a sketchbook and a pen for your daily outdoor practise? :)

Title: Re: My First
Post by: yosh64 on December 03, 2007, 08:17:39 am

@bengoshia: I think putting effort into the equation for a first pixel art is a bit tricky. As when you first start pixeling I don't think you really know everything that can/must be done, or what can be improved. Well I think this is especially so if you are new to such art in general.

Anyhows I think the next step is to begin direct shading, so I suggest defining the direction of the sun and make things closer to the light brighter, and things further away or in shadow darker. Remember to also shade the lines ;), and be careful about this. But yea, you should also decide how many shades for each color you want/need. Another thing, I think at this stage you should try not to get caught up in, nor think about the detail of things/pixels, rather just get the shading done :).

But yea, detail can be tricky in pixel art, as you must think about the real estate of each pixel, as trying to cram too much detail in to a little space may make things very hard to read. Another thing you must think about with detail is whether you will even beable to see the details of whatever it is, as it may be receiving hardly any light, and thus you might not have the color range to add details to such a dark area. But keep this in mind for later, and just continue with the shading :).

After you have the direct shading done (which I think would be a nice exercise for learning), then maybe you can think about adding more detail or whatever else. But for now I suggest you take one step at a time, and wait and see if anyone has more advise further on.

Hmm, one thing I notice at this stage is that the roofs of the larger blocks/houses don't seem equal on each side, and the closer side (the side we can see) looks steeper.

Anyhows keep at it.

Title: Re: My First
Post by: Faktablad on December 03, 2007, 08:05:22 pm
yosh64 is basically right: you need to block out basic areas of light and shadow.  What will really make your piece look realistic is realistic lighting.  This is going to be a sort of long-winded explanation of a basic concept, but it's valuable!  We all live on the planet Earth, so we all can see how the sun interacts with things like grass, trees, buildings, and roads.  The trick is to translate what we all see around us to your piece of art.  So start with the thing that allows us to see at all: the sun! 

The sun casts white light for most of the day, and at sunrise and sunset it turns to yellow or orange (depending on how close to nighttime you are).  So you should decide what time of day you want your piece to be, and then color your piece accordingly.  The sun also scatters its light through the atmosphere, creating blue ambient light that shines from every point in the sky.  So begin to place areas of light and areas of shadow: the areas of light should have a lighter white or yellow hue shift, and the areas of shadow can shift towards blue.  Remember that you don't just put the color blue in areas of shadow: you should keep the color of the object (for example, a yellow house), but just have it be TINGED blue. 

For an illustration of this concept, look at this reference picture (http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y212/Faktablad/edit10.png) of a yellow house.

Notice where the light is coming from.  The white lines represent sunlight.  They travel parallel to each other.  The blue lines represent the ambient light from the sky.  They travel from every point in the sky.  Notice how parts of the roof, the porch, the trees all cast shadows on the objects around them. The parts of the house that are facing the sun are almost entirely white with a slight yellow tinge (a combination of a strong white light, a weaker blue light and a yellow house).  The parts of the house that are not facing the sun are an olive green (a combination of a weaker blue light and a yellow house).  Notice that there are very few parts of the house that actually look yellow; most of these areas are areas where sunlight is shining on the house with only some of its intensity, because it is partially blocked.  Our brain tells us it is a yellow house, so it can be tempting to just use yellow when you are drawing a yellow house.  But in order to successfully represent it, you need to get past that mindset and just let your eyes and your true judgment of color do its thing.

You can apply this to any of the objects in your piece.  Take the grass.  "Is grass really all one shade of green?  No, grass can be green where it is well-watered, or light brown where it dies or gets too much sun.  How does sunlight interact with the green grass?  When green grass is in sunlight, it becomes whiter, but the color also intensifies because the sunlight shines through the blades.  In areas of shadow, it becomes darker, grayer, and slightly blue..."  ETC., ETC., ETC.

This may sound like a long process, but in your brain you can think it through in a matter of seconds.  It's just a matter of choosing the color that you would SEE if you were there, not the color you THINK YOU KNOW is there.

Good luck! :y:
Title: Re: My First
Post by: Jad on December 03, 2007, 11:25:49 pm
Info Pamphlet:

It's nice to see that you're using the right side of the brain (:

That is to say, the right one.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: Arne on December 04, 2007, 07:07:20 am
To center the roof: draw an X inside the short side of the house, then a line straight up from that.

|\:/|    |

Title: Re: My First
Post by: Senad on December 04, 2007, 07:39:48 pm
The picture says all, I hope it helps.

rough sketch
Title: Re: My First
Post by: OneLongWord on December 04, 2007, 07:49:55 pm
Thankyou for all your comments, I've read them all throught at least twice now.

I think I should tell you alittle bit more about myself so you kinda know who you're talknig to. I study Fine Art at Hertfordshire university (england) I'm level 2 full time student. Here is a example of some of my favourite work that I myself have done:


Just to give you an idea of size, This piece of paper is actually A0 sized, and its not even nearly filled up the whole piece, heres a close-up:


So thats my style I hope to carry on into pixelling (which i'm very new at)

I havn't been able to do all the things that everyone has said/suggested at the moment, but I'm going to get round to tehm, thankyou again, here's my new edit:



and thankyou Senad, that helps alot. also thanks to Arne.

Also thankyou to everyone else for the shading advice and other stuff.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: OneLongWord on June 05, 2008, 08:05:21 pm
Sorry for the double post... Although it was 6 months apart :P

I had forgotten about this site, but last month I tried to come to the site (after remembering it) and I kept getting errors and stuff like that, couldn't manage to get here, anyways here I am again. I only had 2 posts before, So I hope to get some more now makes some friends, learn some stuff. I haven't been pixelling too much, but a friend asked me if I wanted to make a game with him, So I've done a little bit of pixelling, much different to my ISO up there.

This is still a WIP. (though I'd use the same topic) Comments and such?


It's rather long, as it was suppose to be a level from a game. Just looking for comments basically and lots of feedback ^_^

I would also like some comments on palette as I'm never sure why colours to use.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: ndchristie on June 05, 2008, 08:11:38 pm
although this is a tremendous imprvement, it seems to have some jpeg artifacts  :-X

also i tihnk for the dark collums, a tiny amount of light on both sides would make them feel a little more "there" instead of just glued in place.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: OneLongWord on June 05, 2008, 09:29:20 pm
OMG I didn't save as Jpeg did I?! noob error  :'(


no no, it's PNG

anyways, thanks ndchristie, here's a quick edit:

Title: Re: My First
Post by: megane on June 05, 2008, 10:33:23 pm
The architecture looks good, but your HUD is a little flat-looking, and it's sort of fuzzy and hard to read.  I think your image went through some lossy compression at some point.  In any case, how about something like this, to give it a bit more shape and definition?
Title: Re: My First
Post by: alkaline on June 05, 2008, 10:51:06 pm
I believe photobucket has the resize option set to 800x600 by default. change it to one megabyte limit per image and you'll be set to go.

can't really make more comments until resize is fixed, but i like megane's HUD edit.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: OneLongWord on June 06, 2008, 09:35:54 am
alkaline thanks for that, I had no idea those options were available on photobucket. I would have continues making the same mistake :P

megane that HUD, Is amazing, so much more depth then my original, it makes mine looks so poor. and I thank you :) I have edited mine and I used a lot from your edit, I hope thats okay, I kept the site I had which I am happy with, I did really like your idea for the cross or plus, We really hadn't though of that. You will notice mine does like very like yours, but yours is amazing, so I was just looking up to it in admiration.

Heres my edit for today at the moment:


Now that I see it up here, the HUD still doesn't look right, It's ONE pixel to high, which makes the numbers look odd, I may edit that in a sec. Anyway, thanks for the comments everyone, much appreciated.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: ndrake on June 06, 2008, 10:43:03 am
your iso art reminds me of a game called Holiday Island:
To bad it's a jpeg.

Title: Re: My First
Post by: OneLongWord on June 06, 2008, 12:03:16 pm
lol I see what you mean, but thats so much more advanced then my abilities :( I like the texture, It reminds me off Transport Tycoon:

Title: Re: My First
Post by: OneLongWord on June 21, 2008, 01:44:51 pm
Big Update today, well long post at least.

Anyways, back to my SECOND pixel, I feel like I should tell you more about it.

My Friend and I were at work and our imagination runs wild while we're bored. We came up of the idea for a game called "Darkhest Hour" Obviously at first, we were both VERY ambition, thinking we're going to make this awesome 3D game with amazing graphics, kind of Devil May Cry like, after realizing we're just too young and too in experienced for that kind of thing, with neither of us knowing how to do any kind of 3d modeling or design which special wow programs on computers (sorry about my language, there, not that it was rude, just "special wow programs" wasn't very good :P)

So, Thinking about it a bit more, we decided a short DEMO version in Pixels would do the trick nicely, So I set off to make a background template with HUD and all that kinda thing, which you have already seen, and sadly hasn't developed much since =/

I'll give you a short description of the game soon, not today, my friend has yet to write it for me :P

Anyway, I have since made the main character, named: Nick Savage

Heres my very large unfinished sprite sheet:


I've yet to do

I had ago at animations here,

Walk with Crossbow:

This is all new to me and I can see things that just don't flow very well.

Any comments are greatly appreciated.
Title: Re: My First
Post by: Chungel on June 21, 2008, 03:41:41 pm
Well I can't really comment on the animations, because I know nothing about the topic.  What I will say is that crossbows are quite heavy, too heavy to be held like your character is holding it.  Crossbows are usually held like any other firearm.  Although the man in this picture is right-handed, it might help you: http://images.jupiterimages.com/common/detail/50/28/23052850.jpg (http://images.jupiterimages.com/common/detail/50/28/23052850.jpg)
Title: Re: My First
Post by: Atnas on June 21, 2008, 05:49:21 pm
I'm not a big fan of the plastic highlight on his pants, and his hair needs a consistent outline if the rest of the sprite has it. ;)
Title: Re: My First
Post by: tehwexxl0rz on June 21, 2008, 08:27:09 pm
It looks like he should be holding the crossbow with both hands....
Also, his hairline is reeeeaally far back. Looks like he shaved a chunk of hair off over his ears. :crazy:
His jaw also needs to be defined. The diagonal line from ear to chin is not working out....
Title: Re: My First
Post by: yosh64 on June 22, 2008, 01:56:49 am

You should tone the leg further back down a shade (so to the arm) to give a better illusion of depth. Also I think you certainly need some more intermediate keyframes, as it looks quite jumpy.

As far as the actual animation movements and such go, I think they are fine.

Hmm, your shading looks to lack any great form or depth, and the clothing looks rather stiff (maybe more intermediate keyframes would help this, but the clothing still lacks any folds and such). Even if you do want a rather light sorta shading style, I think you still need to shade the key forms and also define the folds and such of the cloths.

But yea, you seem to have highlights on the front of the pants which seems to indicate the lightsource is coming from the front. Although this would mean the lightsource flips when ya character flips the other way, and even so the back seems to bright if the lightsource was from the front, hehe.

I might try and edit or something anyhows later.

(http://img293.imageshack.us/img293/1017/spritesheettransparentfhn4.png), (http://img528.imageshack.us/img528/8760/spritesheettransparentfey7.png) and (http://img208.imageshack.us/img208/37/spritesheettransparentfdw6.png)
Well firstly I done this edit, I tried to better define the lighting, slightly changed the palette and refined the form of some things and also brang the head forward a bit. Then I thought it really lacked style and was a bit messy or whatever and made the other edit. Hmm, well I don't think I captured the light style shading of your sprites, but you could shade it in heaps and heaps of different ways and mine is certainly not the only way to go.

Anyhows I hope ya find them useful.