AuthorTopic: Day of the Tentacle art  (Read 16018 times)

Offline ptoing

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #10 on: May 12, 2009, 12:56:14 am
"Index" is the technical name for the colourtable position of a colour. In highcolour images there is not set colourtable. In indexed images you can have up to 256 colour maximum (I don't think there are formats which go to 512 or more colours) on older systems you had less. So this means that you have a set palette where each colour can be placed on the index table as you want to. You can imagine index painting to be the digital painting of the olden days before 16 and 24 bit imaging. So when you index paint you do not index down anything. To index a picture in Photoshop of similar programs means to convert it to a lowcolour format which supports indexes such as png or gif.
Here the problem is that not always the ideal colours are chosen when you sample things down.

So in conclusion, index painting = lofi digital painting with paletted images.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Jad

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #11 on: May 12, 2009, 07:34:16 am
Scriblette: When 'indexing down' you just save your image as png or gif : D Both work with indexed pallettes, see!
' _ '

Offline Arne

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #12 on: May 12, 2009, 02:00:40 pm
ptoing> I used to mod Quake 1 and made some textures in the process... I can't find them now though. I remember the muddy color ramps in the palette.

It's probably a matter of technique / workflow. I prefer having a 24 bit source in case I change the palette later. When indexing to 256 colors you won't lose as much fidelity as you do going down to 16 colors. The quake textures are very gritty, muddy and noisy. If a pixel doesn't look the same as on the original it's not the end of the world.

I did this in Photoshop from scratch, the only tool used was a 1px brush set on opacity (and the color picker of course). While texture doesn't make sense (it's just a mix of different materials), it shows that not a whole lot is lost when indexing. You probably won't be able to tell which one is which.



(Normally I would paint big first and then scale down and clean up, I find it difficult to design at a pixel scale. Although, occasionally I pixel line art if I need exact circles or certain precision, then scale up and paint over that, then scale down again... it works kind of like 'hinting' on fonts)
« Last Edit: May 12, 2009, 02:10:58 pm by Arne »

Offline ptoing

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #13 on: May 12, 2009, 03:32:29 pm
For sure a matter of workflow. As far as doing texturework goes, I think textures are best made at target resolution, at least stuff 512x512 and below, since you can get way sharper detail like that instead of from scaled down bigger stuff. But also again, workflow.

P.S.: pretty sure the left one is the indexed version.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2009, 03:36:58 pm by ptoing »
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Arne

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #14 on: May 12, 2009, 06:26:25 pm
I think the textures can be made at any size, but if you have scaled down you most likely also need to clean up (unless you have excellent hinting). Like I said, it depends on at which scale you work best with sculpting. When doing larger sprites/textures, I'd rather work big at the design stage, experimenting with scales and proportions things, hue sliding, etc. Usually the cleanup stage is not that much work. It's almost meaningless to start big if you're doing NES style sprites though, or just something small or something with a very limited palette.

Yeah, it's the left one which is indexed, but it takes a while to spot the differences. The missing pixels and larger value jumps are the giveaway. When I saved it I almost thought that I had mis-pasted and I had to check that I indeed had 2 different versions! However, I'm sure a that a less noisy image with more smooth gradients will give worse results. the solution can be to dither a bit with a brush on opacity.

Anyways, I was thinking of trying my hand at some DotT styled Space Quest screens, but the composition aspect is by far the trickiest bit, not the palette stuff...

Offline junkboy

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #15 on: May 12, 2009, 08:10:53 pm
This is, to my knowledge, one of the very few pieces of concept art from DOTT that's been released.



My personal theory is that Lucasart had an army of droids who simply pixeled (or index-painted) over marker drawings like these for the backgrounds. Probably the same for the characters since they're very classically animated, as if some ex-Disney guy had been sitting there cranking out stuff frame by frame. No cut and paste animation as far as the eye can see.

Offline ptoing

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #16 on: May 12, 2009, 09:24:22 pm
Seems not to have been the case (the army of droids theory)

Credits from the game intro:

Lead Artist, Stylist, Background Artist
Peter Chan

Lead Animator, Character Designer
Larry Ahern

Animators
Larry Ahern
Lela Downling
Kyle Balda
Sean Turner
Jesse Clark

Art Technicians
Jesse Clark
Ron Lussier

That is 6 or 7 People doing actual art, with only one person doing all the background art, which seems fair enough.
The game does not have too many backgrounds and a proficient artist can surely make one or more a day in a normal working environment of 8 or more hours a day after initial sketches have been done.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Helm

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #17 on: May 12, 2009, 09:26:37 pm
Truly a lot of these elaborate ways to arrive at the end result art for DotC are superfluous. The most straightforward way sometimes is the actual one used.

Offline Arne

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #18 on: May 12, 2009, 09:38:24 pm
Wow, I had been looking for art like that. I had to screencap a Youtube video, so the quality is crappy. The scaling and rotation is different, but after compensating I got a very close match.



Note the door post behind the sofa becoming straight. They probably did a lot of horizontal/vertical cleanups/changes like that to avoid too much aa.

Edit: If someone have a clean pixel image it would perhaps be informative to see the marker(?) sketch placed over the undisturbed pixel image.

If they scanned in color... I wonder how the scanner built a color table without knowing the full image. Perhaps it did an initial color counting pass. I noticed that most of the DotT screens have some 160-175'ish colors (the rest may be for sprites?). I haven't checked if they've made ramps or if it's just jumbled colors.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2009, 10:03:39 pm by Arne »

Offline ptoing

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Re: Day of the Tentacle art

Reply #19 on: May 13, 2009, 01:17:44 am
screenshot from intro


and comparison with transformed markerpainting (I took the carpet as a guide mostly)


Judging by some things like the colours of the carpet and such I would indeed say it is colour scans which have been cleaned up and edited quite a bit.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.