AuthorTopic: My first attempt at pixel art  (Read 768 times)

Offline SirAndres

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 9
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

My first attempt at pixel art

on: April 12, 2020, 09:15:43 pm
After researching the concepts, I decided to start practicing with a simple chess board to practice on. So that it is not excessively easy, I tried to give it an "isometric" angle. Also, I included the gray scale palette used to check if it is "correct"



Let the butchery begin (?)

Offline Mathias

  • 0100
  • ***
  • Posts: 1794
  • Karma: +2/-0
  • im not real
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/9542.htm
    • View Profile

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #1 on: April 15, 2020, 08:24:53 am
Do more, SirAndres.

This isn't much to go on, for anyone wanting to give you guiding critique.

I don't know about jumping straight to iso as a pixel art beginner. I wouldn't recommend it. Isometric projection has nothing to do with pixel art, inherently. Thus you're practicing two different things at the same time. Focus on PA.
If you really want to up the difficulty, actually render a creature, character, or scene instead of a simple repeating pattern.

I like the palette choice for now - simple grey 5 color ramp. That's perfect for a beginner. You can focus on just value, by using a grey ramp.

Your AA is a little messy, but the chessboard is fine overall.
Let's see what you do next. Maybe some chess pieces?

Offline Chonky Pixel

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 224
  • Karma: +1/-0
    • tequila_ben
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/187855.htm
    • https://www.facebook.com/chonkypixel/?modal=admin_todo_tour
    • View Profile
    • Chonky Pixel

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #2 on: April 15, 2020, 09:55:33 pm
It looks good, except that the antialiasing on your black squares isn't symmetrical and it makes them look kinda curved. This is how I might attack the problem.



Firstly, because I used dark lines for the grid, the filled black squares are naturally bigger. I'm eating into the black squares with antialiasing colour to redress the balance.

Also, why use so many shades of grey when you can use one?

If your line is not 45 degrees, it will have steps of more than one pixel. Add to or carve into the steps with your antialiasing colour, but don't cover more than half a step with this colour. In this case, steps are two pixels long so the grey is one pixel long.


You can get away without antialiasing lines like these, unless you really want a smooth look.

I agree with Mathius, let's see something more complex!

Offline SirAndres

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 9
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #3 on: April 16, 2020, 03:04:46 am


Hello! Thanks for the tips haha
You are right, practicing isometrics from scratch is quite complicated, so I will follow your instructions and I will try to make some flat chess pieces, using the same ramp and also only a shade of gray, to see which one will get me a better Outcome.

Offline SirAndres

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 9
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #4 on: April 16, 2020, 11:37:21 pm
Hello there!
Updating the promised chess pieces, I am having a lot of trouble finding the correct way to do the internal details to give it the correct volume (Especially when I try to create the white pieces).
I use a light source from the upper left corner.

Here is my "flat" version

Here is my version in "1 shade" of gray

And here is my version with the gray palette.

Offline Mathias

  • 0100
  • ***
  • Posts: 1794
  • Karma: +2/-0
  • im not real
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/9542.htm
    • View Profile

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #5 on: April 18, 2020, 03:47:03 pm
Well the good news is that the chess pieces are all recognizable. With just their silhouettes I can read what each piece is supposed to be.

Perspective issue - the pieces' lower base edge is a straight horizontal line implying straight-on orthographic, but interior details indicate we're looking slightly downward since there's rounded edges where the piece sections meet.

As for the shading - rendering pixel art isn't much different from shading any other type of art. The rules of light and shadow are the same.
Do you need to set a goal to work on shading techniques perhaps?

If you can block in basic shapes, and shade them you should be good to go. The rest is pixel art technique.

Your grey ramp palette got messed up - you have two greys that are almost identical now for some reason. Either merge these similar greys or make them contrast each other better.

Lastly - do have a look at Cure's pixel art write-up and see if you can glean some useful points. It's probably a bit overload for you right now, but go ahead and scan it anyway. It may help.

Offline Chonky Pixel

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 224
  • Karma: +1/-0
    • tequila_ben
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/187855.htm
    • https://www.facebook.com/chonkypixel/?modal=admin_todo_tour
    • View Profile
    • Chonky Pixel

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #6 on: April 18, 2020, 08:07:29 pm
Your outlines are really good! I think the rook and the knight could be thinner though, personally.



Here are two (really rough!) ideas for giving an idea of 3D shape using shading. If you want to do this, don't just add grey pixels to the edges! Doing that will at best make things look soft and fluffy, and at worst embossed.

First, pick a viewing angle and projection. It's good to be consistent throughout the image.

Instead of just drawing lines inside the piece, you can draw a curve through the whole shape, following the line where the directly-lit area meets the areas that aren't in direct light. Then add some darker shade where even less light will reach. (Under things that jut out on the opposite side, for example.) This is a pretty shabby line TBH (and the perspective is still a bit off), but I didn't want to spend too long on it. I hope you get the idea!

The second piece is an example of how following even a simple rule can get a half-decent shiny effect. Just create a consistently thick line of shine one pixel from the edge. (You can make it thinner for thinner sections of the piece, which helps).

Or try using a reference. I did a quick search for "chess piece" in Google Images and there were lots of examples of pieces in different lighting, or using different drawing styles. It can be fun working out how to get similar effects using large pixels.

Best of luck!

Offline Chonky Pixel

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 224
  • Karma: +1/-0
    • tequila_ben
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/187855.htm
    • https://www.facebook.com/chonkypixel/?modal=admin_todo_tour
    • View Profile
    • Chonky Pixel

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #7 on: April 18, 2020, 08:17:53 pm
I forgot to say:

Find tutorials on drawing basic shapes, like cubes, spheres, cones, etc. Once you know how to make these kinds of things look good, you can take a complex shape like a chess piece and 'break it down' into simple shapes. A cross on the top might be 5 cubes, the body and flared sections might be made of sections of cones, the head might be a sphere, etc. etc. Then you should be able to draw it.

Seeing your curves it looks like you have pretty decent line-work, which is a great start.

Offline SirAndres

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 9
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #8 on: April 20, 2020, 05:26:53 pm
Following the advice you both gave me, i tried to find a couple of tutorials and guides to shade some basic shapes.



I tried to give a different shadow format to each angle of light to see which one was the best. What do you think?

Offline Mathias

  • 0100
  • ***
  • Posts: 1794
  • Karma: +2/-0
  • im not real
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/9542.htm
    • View Profile

Re: My first attempt at pixel art

Reply #9 on: April 20, 2020, 06:16:27 pm
Looks good, dude.
You're acquiring vital art knowledge. We all start somewhere. Keep doing little tutorial experiments and stuff and get a feel for the basics, and apply it to your work. Go gettem.