Critique => Pixel Art => Topic started by: BeL on August 07, 2005, 09:44:17 pm

Title: Helmet
Post by: BeL on August 07, 2005, 09:44:17 pm

Here's a helmet : (http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/2972/helmettrans7fc.gif)

About two hours of work. I used no reference. My main concern at the moment is to make it look like it's made of metal.

C&C please.

Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: Crazy Asian Gamer on August 07, 2005, 10:08:30 pm
Here are my thoughts on this piece.
Move the eye sockets down a bit. The mouth area seems uncomfortable and dangerous to me, but that's just an opinion on functionality. The palette could use darker colors, I think.

I think you should move the light source, too, but I may be wrong on that.

Keep it up, you're doing good.  :D
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: Doomraider on August 07, 2005, 10:57:50 pm
I think if you were to put some darker grey around some of the light shines near the middle, it would look more like metal. Also if you replace the black lines with some dark grey it would look more like metal ;D
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: miascugh on August 08, 2005, 12:23:20 am
ok, let's see. my advice would be to break the object up into the basic shapes it is composed by. this makes it easier to get the shading to look right, after that you can start shaping the object into a more irregular form and adding details.
and, also, you don't need to go for a chrome-kind of surface at all to get a metallic look. chrome is hard to do if you don't know about the surroundings of the object, it all being reflected by the surface (you can of course do some sort of a generic midtone-highlight-midtone-dark-midtone gradient, i've seen a tutorial focusing on exactly that look some time ago, and i'm sure that somebody here still has the url somewhere, but it creates a really shiny look). just keep in mind that metal tends to have strong highlights, especially hard edges reflect very strongly, and, that's what i like to do, you can tint the colors to a somewhat patina-green-ish hue. but again, subtlety is the key
i've made a quick example to demonstrate it:


and here's a really awesome example for pixeled shiny metal (by z gravity):
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: BeL on August 08, 2005, 09:29:13 am
Thanks to everyone for the crits... and thanks miascugh, I can work with those edits forever :)

here's the update:
old:(http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/2972/helmettrans7fc.gif)   new:(http://img51.imageshack.us/img51/7949/helmet28cj.gif)

Thanks again

(PS: wow... this place is so friendly and nice! /me sheds some (very manly) tears  :'()
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: Helm on August 08, 2005, 09:55:14 am
Bel, this is totally going towards something a lot better, but your technique is sloppy. Pixel art is about good palette management, dithering and AA. These are the specific skills. You should practise all of them.

Palette Management: I think you're using about 60 colours in the latest helmet. This is distressing even more if you think that there's a little palette to the top right corner that's duefully neglected. You do not need more than 6 colours for this. Try this for a change: make a palette BEFORE you start pixelling, and stick to it 100%.

Also, some of the hues are pure gray. There's no need for that unless you're going for something. I like the colours of the newest helmet though, so I won't complain much about this.

Dithering: there is none. I'm ok with that. In my edit though, I'll show you how a LITTLE dithering can help a piece without making it look all checkerboard.

AA: There is none. This is the biggest issue. AA is the primary tool of the trade. Pixel art is all about ONE pixel making the composition work. Specific placements. Right now there's tons of jaggies, sharp changes from the brightest shade to the darkest ( on the 'nose' mostly ) and generally you need to tighten up the lineart, colour and AA efficiently.

Here's an edit. Only the right side is edited to show you the difference:

Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: BeL on August 08, 2005, 11:53:42 am

1st of all the color thing was gimps fault not mine! >_< so now i switched to graphics gale...

Anyway, I tried some dithering and I think it looks better, The eyes still need alot of work though. I also removed the outline.

(http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/2972/helmettrans7fc.gif) (http://img51.imageshack.us/img51/7949/helmet28cj.gif) (http://img304.imageshack.us/img304/244/helmet36dm.png)

Thanks for the crits
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: Doomraider on August 08, 2005, 12:28:48 pm
Wow, Bel, you've improved so much in one day XD Newest helmet is awesome!
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: Helm on August 08, 2005, 12:42:36 pm

The things I changed:

Look CLOSELY to what I did to the inner edges of the 'moth' and 'nose'. See how I used the rest of the shades to ease the highlight into pure darkness? This is called anti-alias. Practise that. A good way to practise is by doing this: open photoshop, the gimp or whatever you want, set antialias on, and draw freehand black lines over white backgrounds. The program will automatically antialias the lines. Now, redice the colours of this piece automatically to about 5. Then, draw a new line on the piece with black but WITHOUT AA on. Then try to immitate the automatic antialias manually, by using the 4 gray shades you have by the reduction.

At the dent, and on the eyes, I removed the highlights ABOVE them. The highlight should be below them. Light comes from above, and reflects harshly on sharp edges. Think about it.

You were using 11 colours. Many of them duplicates. I took them out with no loss of data. In graphics gale, there's a palette window. Play close attention to it, work with 100% opacity brushes, and you should always know how many shades you're using. An on-screen palette drawn on the side of the piece is a nice idea, but only if you know what you're doing.
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: BeL on August 08, 2005, 01:22:20 pm
Hello again.

Yes I supposedly know what AA is, but knowing what it is and knowing how to "implement" it is another thing :) I'll try that practice method you recommended

The extra colors were on the palette (bah stupid me)

so... here's an update with AA!

(http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/2972/helmettrans7fc.gif) (http://img51.imageshack.us/img51/7949/helmet28cj.gif) (http://img304.imageshack.us/img304/244/helmet36dm.png) (http://img290.imageshack.us/img290/1077/helmet44rj.png)

Thanks again
Title: Re: Helmet
Post by: Godslayer on August 08, 2005, 01:24:26 pm
Thinning it our by a pixel made it look alot less extra large and more menacing, good job.