AuthorTopic: Lackluster Shading/Highlighting?  (Read 1817 times)

Offline Tetiro

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Lackluster Shading/Highlighting?

on: January 08, 2014, 01:16:21 pm
Hi guys,

For the last year, my pixel art abilities have vastly excelled. But there has been one problem. Shading. I know of the techniques like pillow shading, spotted and all sorts.

But when it comes to the colours, it can sometimes lack a good feel. Take my current project. It's using a custom 9-bit palette (the RGB increases/decreases by values of 32). So naturally I decrease the values by multiples of 32. This does work on some of the colours but for some of them it doesn't look right.

So I thought I'd come and ask your advice. How do you approach picking colours for shading? Do you decrease the rgb? Decrease the hue?

I'd really appreciate it as this has always been a problem for me so I'd really like to nip this problem in the butt.

Offline Mathias

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Re: Lackluster Shading/Highlighting?

Reply #1 on: January 08, 2014, 01:33:24 pm
Color picking is too subjective to be arbitrarily controlled by math. If you're working under very limiting restrictions then that may be hard to avoid, but generally you want your eye to determine what's wrong or right. Not a computer.

Staying conscious of color temperature is helpful. And how colors interact with each other, or "vibrate", when adjacent.

Do you decrease the rgb?
You mean saturation?

I always work in HSB. I can easily change just the saturation/chroma, hue/color, and lightness/value of my colors, and I do so constantly per what I'm trying to accomplish.

Post some examples for others to evaluate.

Offline Ai

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Re: Lackluster Shading/Highlighting?

Reply #2 on: January 08, 2014, 01:52:33 pm
I recommend you as a general guide and GPick's colorscheme generator as a tool to experiment with.

There are strategies involved (eg. exaggerating real hue differences to create contrast), but IMO observing the colors of real materials is the most important thing, color theory next most important after that, and the exact method that you arrive at your colors with is well down the list.

You may also want to consider a program such as GraFX2, which can allow you to use your 9bit limitation while still editing in HSL color model.

My only comment on the 9bit limitation specifically is that lower-precision colorspaces give you less flexibility with saturation levels, so you are often well served by making coloring more 'cartoony' than you otherwise would (more greatly saturated colors in general, meaning that when you use less saturated colors, you need less of them and they stand out more)
If you insist on being pessimistic about your own abilities, consider also being pessimistic about the accuracy of that pessimistic judgement.