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Saboteur
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Quote Saboteur Replybullet Topic: How to: lineart
    Posted: 03 July 2005 at 12:26am

Usually, when I do a peice, I just aim at an idea and hit it with a hammer 'till it resembles something presentable. As much as that has worked for me in the past, I figure that now is a good time to start doing it properly. I've struggled with a few ideas in my head, trying to get them in lineart form. All of these came to naught.

So what I want to know is this: How do you attack a peice? Please start at the very start. Like, from when you get the idea, what do you do first? do you do a very basic line structure, do you draw it on paper, then scan it? I'd really like to know. I've got some severe pixeller's block.

"I was minding my own business and walking across a pebbled path, and a Duck started giving me the business."
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1ucas
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Quote 1ucas Replybullet Posted: 03 July 2005 at 1:00am
I'm in a kind of block too, but I just started a big project that's getting me excited again. It's nice.

I wish my scanner worked with WinXP, because then I'd use it for lineart, and things would be a lot easier for me. I'd probably have a lot more cool and more creative pixel stuff done by now. >:/ I have tons of cool sketches, but they're useless. Also, my abilities to sketch on the computer are completely inferior to my actual drawing abilities.

Anyway, what I do is basically scribble a rough lineart on mspaint and then draw a thin line in another color above it. Example:


(old project, never went too far... might try again some other time :|)

Then I fill the lines with colors, make a rough coloring and then start the pixel shading. The lineart is just a guideline though, and I always end up changing the shapes a lot.

Still, there's another method I just found out (read "learned from ryan-gfx"). You draw just the silhouette, and then extract the lineart from it. This method is interesting because 1) it's quick and cheap 2) your imagination goes nuts imagining what the shape is, and you get a lot of nice ideas in the process.

So yeah, that's basically all I know. I'd be glad to learn other methods :)

Oh, and another note: I pick colors on the fly. This SUCKS, it's better to set a pallete before you start.

Edited by 1ucas
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Quote Saboteur Replybullet Posted: 03 July 2005 at 12:04pm

Oohhhh. usually I just went for the thin lines straight outta my brain. I'll give that a go next round.

Thanks.

"I was minding my own business and walking across a pebbled path, and a Duck started giving me the business."
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sedgemonkey
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Quote sedgemonkey Replybullet Posted: 03 July 2005 at 12:43pm

I do step 1 and 2, but never really make it to step 3... I start coloring while filling in the lineart.  Probably should actually follow through with b/w lineart just to try.

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Lawrence
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Quote Lawrence Replybullet Posted: 04 July 2005 at 2:40pm
I usually draw some pencil sketches of my idea, then choose the best one and scan it. After that I draw over the sketch, changing things, a bit like one of my old pieces:





As you can see, I changed a few things when going over the sketch (which was quite messy anyway). After that, I just coloured and shaded. Hope that helps.
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Quote Saboteur Replybullet Posted: 04 July 2005 at 5:23pm
Wow, that's probably a better tactic for me. Thanks a load, Lawrence, I'll try that one, too.
"I was minding my own business and walking across a pebbled path, and a Duck started giving me the business."
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BruceJuice
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Quote BruceJuice Replybullet Posted: 09 July 2005 at 8:13pm
I've tried the pencil thing before. I always find it a bit timely to have to get a line art from it. Of course, it'd be easier if i could use layers like in PSP, but MS Paint makes everything take long.

That other idea with the scribbling a sketch would be much easier way for me. I'm gonna have to try it.  

BTW, that helmet rocks.


Edited by BruceJuice
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Garage Inc.
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Quote Garage Inc. Replybullet Posted: 10 July 2005 at 3:41pm

I do a much different way than these gus/girls. I get an idea of what I want to draw, then just go at it piece by piece. I don't doodle, I just do a 1 pixel thick lineart.

By doing it piece by piece, it's not jumping in, it's more of, walking in slowly because the water is cold. It takes a little while, but, it probobly takes the same time as drawing something, scanning it, then tracing over. Actually, it probobly doesn't take as long.

Anways, after that, I pick the lightsource, the go from there.

If you have any otehr questions, just ask.

For every second spent wondering if you can do something, you could spend 2 seconds doing it.
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Quote Saboteur Replybullet Posted: 10 July 2005 at 10:26pm

No further questions. The... erm... defence rests?

Garage Inc, I did that as well. I just figured maybe it wasn't the best way to do it, and now I have other ways to try.

Thanks a bunch, guys!

"I was minding my own business and walking across a pebbled path, and a Duck started giving me the business."
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Quote PixelSnader Replybullet Posted: 11 July 2005 at 7:21am

garage, that is a good thing for smaller pieces, but when you are making something bigger, its probably better to first sketch (be it digital or on paper) to get proportions etc right.

allso, when i sketch i tend to have better flow in the lines then when i do them manually (even though its messy)


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Garage Inc.
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Quote Garage Inc. Replybullet Posted: 11 July 2005 at 8:54am
Snader, good point. I should try sketching something big with my tablet.
For every second spent wondering if you can do something, you could spend 2 seconds doing it.
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Quote Saboteur Replybullet Posted: 14 July 2005 at 12:17am

Link for a start-to-finish tutorial. Not pixel art, but still more than applicable, as far as how to tackle a project goes.

http://www.gfxartist.com/features/tutorials/27609

Also, browse around and you'll find that sedge and the boys have marked that territory as well. Istvan has some stellar non-pixel art art.

And how come this person isn't part of pixeljoint? The peice (if it truly is pixel art) is bounds ahead of almost anything we've got here. No offence, it's just an awesome peice.

http://interface.gfxartist.com/artworks/5483



Edited by Saboteur
"I was minding my own business and walking across a pebbled path, and a Duck started giving me the business."
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Quote Xero Replybullet Posted: 14 July 2005 at 7:01am
*Shrugs* I just basically open paint and do it pixel by pixel, no silhouettes (is that how its spelt?), no pencil and paper, just a 1 pixel thick line... As i shade, somtimes i make edits, but i always just start it pixel by pixel in ms paint.

Edited by Xero
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Quote iSTVAN Replybullet Posted: 14 July 2005 at 9:45am

I think its neat that so many pixel artists can have so many different techniques.

I used to always post process animations with my works, just to show how I made them, and how I made them so fast. I've just gotten lazy recently, however they may serve their purpose better here.

I generally draw a sketch of whatever it is I want to pixel, however I rarely scan it and I never trace over the top. Not that these techniques cant be helpful, I just think its more efficient to get it nice, neat and straight the first time.

The reason why I find compiling a process animation so easy is because I tend to save as constantly, for fear of computer crashes, and incase I mess up somehow. So in essense, I'm left with a pretty clear timeline of each work.

I'll use my Animal series as an example, because I alreayd compiled a few animations:

1. First up, the sketch. This is a rarity. I'd usually lose or throw away the bit of scrap paper I do the sketch on. As you can see I am fiddling around with the pose, and trying to work out certain tough spots. Often a reference photo will be of great help, especially for subjects you've never personnally witnessed.

2. Usually the next thing I will do is get some shapes onto the field. I've spotted doing this lately, but its a nice way to start I reckon. I now tend to jump straight in with the line tool, so I can carve out my image. I dont have any individual pics left, but check out the animation I'll show at the bottom to see what I mean.

3. Once you've got nice crisp lines and nice crisp eyes, from staring at the little dots on the computer screen, you should find yourself with something like this:

 

3. Now the fun stuff happens! You must select some base colours to fill the white spaces. Sometimes a good source for interesting colours can be found in photographs. They need not even relate to your currect subject matter. Once this is done, just keep adding more tones, lighter and darker in order to fill the thing/character out, and establish a light source to give depth. This can be tough, so experiment with different combinations. Different shading styles exist, just do what feels best and run with it. Damn! When did this turn into a 'How to Pixel with iSTVAN' tutorial! Oh well, I'm practically finished, so bare with me.

4. Finishing touches. This can include editing things like contrast, brightness, Gamma correction, saturation, RGB concentration and other simple things you can do in programs such as GraphicsGale.

Check the process animation:

Have some more:

I'd actually consider all of these quite outdated by now, but they could be handy for a beginner. With different skills and techniques, things are bound to become more complex and tiring, but every pixel artist needs to find their own groove, and keep open to experimentation, like any artist. If you dont push yourself then theres no real point in continuing. Throw yourself in the deepend, whats the worst that can happen? And thats where the pixel art community comes into it. We're here to help you help yourself.  </rant>

If anybody has an specific works of mine they'd like to see the process for feel free to ask, I'd be more than happy to compile a process animation for it, the door to my office is always open...so...



Edited by iSTVAN
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Quote Saboteur Replybullet Posted: 15 July 2005 at 1:08pm

That's awesome, ist! One thing I see in yours and not in many others are circles. I guess it makes for some nice flow, and its wierd that you can't even notice it in the pieces. And the fact that you have the patience to do those animations astounds me.

Just a question, though. Have you ever tried to colour a peice using only colours from a picture of "juzz"?

-edit- Oh, that looks bad. I'm not laughing at the name, just the idea.



Edited by Saboteur
"I was minding my own business and walking across a pebbled path, and a Duck started giving me the business."
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Quote iSTVAN Replybullet Posted: 15 July 2005 at 7:13pm

Like I said, I tend to draw lineart more with just straight lines theser days. But the circle thing really does work, just like it does for animator's and hand drawing.

Funny you should ask about "juzz"...

I coloured this old one from a picture of us. But I use photographs of people all the time for colours.

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