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Messages - Tourist
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1
Pixel Art / Re: Pixel Wings advice/help?
« on: December 03, 2016, 04:46:06 am »
There's a Wing tutorial here that might help:
http://helpfulharrie.tumblr.com/post/38673665799/source-uzlo-uzlolzu#_=_

Tourist

2
Pixel Art / Re: Pin-Up hair
« on: May 10, 2016, 01:48:41 am »
I like how you've done the curly hair.

On the face:
Lighting is inconsistent. 

Facial structure is not quite right.  Mouth is on the side of the head, features are misaligned.  I recommend using some references to figure out the relative positions of the features.  No time for an edit, but this might get you started:



Noses are larger than your brain likes to remember.  Nostrils are often visible.  The mouth should be closer to the long line of the cheek.  The ear (and the lines in the hair above the ear) need to tilt with the head.  The base of the nose and the upper lip should tilt a bit.

Strong light from above and to the side of a tilted head will highlight the outer edge of the eye socket, and then on to either the top or center of the cheek bone (depending on angles).

Pixeling a head with a tilt and a twist can be a bit tough, but you're working at a good size for it.

Good luck,  keep at it.
Tourist

3
General Discussion / Re: The History of Pixel Art
« on: February 02, 2016, 05:34:07 am »
Under mosaics you might also include micro mosaics.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micro_mosaics

"A distinctive feature of micromosaics is that the tesserae are usually oblong rather than square.[7] The best work can achieve 3,000 to 5,000 tesserae per square inch. The best collections are in the Hermitage Museum and the Gilbert Collection in London. Asia has produced a number of contemporary examples using modern precision machinery to produce the diminutive elements."

Other sources on micro mosaics indicate common densities of 1000-2000 mosaic tiles per square inch.  That's like working at 2x on a 72dpi monitor.  5000 tiles per square inch mentioned on Wikipedia is like working at 1x.  But they were working with bits of glass and doing it by hand.


Edit: Is it work mentioning dithering?  Wikipedia says dithering for reducing visual noise goes back to the 1970s or earlier, but dithering for approximating colors has to go back to early color printing efforts.  Halftones and Ben-Day dots from the 1880s, the latter widely used in early color comic books.

Tourist

4
General Discussion / Re: Official Off-Topic Thread 2015
« on: November 17, 2015, 01:38:15 am »
Critical bug found in libpng.  This is a common library used to load and save png images.  Application developers should update their libraries.  Image applications and web browsers (and anything that opens an arbitrary png image) are the most vulnerable.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/11/15/png_pongs_critical_bug_patched_in_ubiquitous_libpng/

5
General Discussion / Re: Crouched Movement/Crawling Animation Examples?
« on: October 14, 2015, 09:52:15 pm »
This site lists a couple but I haven't looked at them myself.

http://www.referencereference.com/youngman2.html

Hope this helps,
Tourist

6
General Discussion / Re: Official Off-Topic Thread 2015
« on: June 29, 2015, 04:38:36 pm »
Ran across this today.  Some cross-stitch patterns as tattoos.  Could just as well be pixel art as the images are grid based.  People have unusual tastes.

http://www.ellf.ru/creative/35502-tatu-krestikom.html

Tourist

7
Pixel Art / Re: Orc environment
« on: June 14, 2015, 05:51:54 pm »
Dull rocks are dull.  Some American landscape painters for inspiration

Thomas Moran:


https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Thomas_Moran


Frederick Edwin Church:  (this one even has a gap to jump over)


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederic_Edwin_Church


Sandford Robinson Gifford (linked for size):
http://www.artcyclopedia.com/images/lakenemi.jpg

Hope this helps,
Tourist

8
Pixel Art / Re: Need some advice about a particular style
« on: June 13, 2015, 12:26:07 am »
I poked at the reference images a bit. 

The color ramps look rather basic.  Five bits for each RGB channel, SNES hardware limit.  One common light and one common dark color.  Three ramps of three additional colors, one ramp of four additional colors.  Some of the ramps are simple linear changes in RGB space, some are not, but most look like a linear pattern that was then tweaked by hand.  Ramps are separate, no reuse of colors other than the light end point.

Use of colors in the sprites is pretty straightforward.  Sketch the sprite, draw in a shadow line.  Any pixel in shadow gets a color, all the pixels on the light side are the lightest color.  Outline with the dark.  The end result is the overexposed look.


A bit more detail:
The color channels are all clamped between 16 and 248.  That's a bit odd, I would have thought they get clamped between 16 and 240 per the YUV color space.  More likely these sprites are just a rip from the original game, so I'm not sure if this should be clamped or scaled.

The sprites were also made to output to a CRT display, not an LCD.  There was a thread in the general discussion area from a while ago about CRT emulation that goes over some of the differences.  I remember digging through the MAME source code to see how they had done it.  I think they used a small blur followed by spectral sharpening.  The result was that colors would bleed a bit into the adjacent pixels and then get hue shifted towards one the RGB axes.  This effect was stronger in the light pixels than the darker ones.  The final result was overall darker as well.  My memory is a bit fuzzy.

If you wanted to create a sprite that looks like the ones posted, just reduce your palette to 16 colors, using the upper 5 bits per channel (each R,G, and B should be divisible by 8 ).  If you wanted something that looks like how it actually looked on the screen you'd need to hit the sprite with a filter of some sort afterward.  User Ai might know if there's a plugin for Graphics Gale that already does this.


The witch sprite in the OP:

I like the hair.

Something in your process or tools is generating an enormous number of colors (116).  That's going to make it difficult to edit.

The sprite looks like she has a broken upper arm just where the shoulder and glove meet.

I think I've seen the hat before on another sprite.  Same angle too.  Come to think of it, I think I've seen this same sprite design before.  Blue hair, dark purple witch outfit.  But it was a younger look to the character.  Did you post this a while ago under a different user name?  Or is there just some common reference that I'm missing?  Doesn't really matter, just curious.

Good luck with your sprite,
Tourist

Edit: removed unexpected smiley

9
Pixel Art / Re: [C+C] Beat'em up - Fighting game sprites
« on: June 01, 2015, 05:36:18 pm »
The animations bug me a bit.  I think it's because there is almost no bend or twist in the torso.  All of the motion is in the arms and legs.  It makes her look stiff.

Tourist

10
Animation / Re: Walk (failure)
« on: February 02, 2015, 02:44:58 am »
I got a little further on this and then stalled out.  In the interest of sharing, here's what else I learned.

Here is a basic run animation, 30 frame motion capture:



Software interpolated to 16 frames:



This works ok, but it's a little bit stiff and floaty because the interpolated frames don't capture the extremes of the joint positions.  I took a looking at the original frame by frame, and the timing is a mess.  The main problem is that the left and right sides hit the extreme joint positions a frame or two apart. 

The body is at its lowest on frame 4, with one foot on the ground and that knee at its most bent position.  The other leg, passing underneath, continues to bend until frame 5, after the body has started rising up.  The shoulder makes a large move between frames 5 and 6.

Similarly, the figure takes off from the ground on frame 7, but the other knee continues to push forward until frame 8.  And so on.

Spreading out the animation to 480 frames and then selecting frames that keep the extreme positions, but as spaced out as I could, gives this:



This looks pretty good.  It's not as smooth as the previous animation because it sacrifices timing for position.  It looks more bouncy.  Over the 16 frames it also spends one more frame on the ground so it looks more grounded rather than floaty.

Time taken for smooth interpolation: a couple of button presses, call it 2 minutes.
Time taken for manual frame selection: approx 20-30 minutes .

That's not a huge difference compared to the time required to slap down all the pixels, so the manual frame selection is probably worth it.


Then into the vector art application!  Oh wait, I don't have a vector art application.  So I wrote one.  It looks like this:



It's similar to Pivot stick animator, but it handles closed forms and curves.  This not only lets the user draw an outline on an image, but also add in other flowing lines like hair or clothing without worrying about cloth physics simulators.  It's also a clunky, clumsy and unfriendly tool. 

Setting up the first frame takes a 30-40 minutes, but simply moving the shapes to the next frame only takes 5 minutes per frame unless the figure changes shape significantly.   This doesn't save much time compared to just sketching lines like I did in the first post, but it is a net savings for longer animations (8 frames no, 16 frames yes). 

Then to pixels!

And here I stalled out, because I am just too slow at slapping down pixels.  I also noticed I had a tendency to simply fill in the vector shapes rather than use them as guides to actually draw.  That's no good.  If I just filled in the vectors I'd get animated vector art, and then I might as well use pure vector tools instead.   I don't really want to do that.

I need to go practice basic pixels and speed pixelling a bit.  I declare this effort to be on hold.  Hopefully this post is useful for others to learn from my blunders.

Tourist

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