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Pixel Art Details


Title: Incommunicado
Pixel Artist: cure  (Level 11 Pixellite :: 80375 points)
Posted: 6/28/2017 16:10
Palette: 11 colors
Statistics:  42 comments    106 faves    0 avatars

In the silence years pass by like hours

from the blackness- poetry and flowers

Top Pixel Art - June 2017 (#9)Top Pixel Art - June 2017 (#9)


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dethrood (Level 4 Jersey Devil) @ 3/29/2022 15:38

This is the moment when pixel art has really absorbed a large number of types of fine art.

Hapiel (Level 11 Bonsai) @ 4/23/2018 03:22

Maybe, I don't know if that's close, but I do know that you should open this image in a graphics editor....

moondrome (Level 7 Merfolk) @ 4/9/2018 09:55

haha thanks for the clue ( ten months later!) ! well I still don't get it buuut somehow I feel it could be related to " one 100 years of solitude" ( which I 've never read by the way).  is that close?

cure (Level 11 Pixellite) @ 4/7/2018 09:25

moondrome: good question, I've updated with a clue

TryingPixelArt (Level 4 Egg Tart) @ 12/22/2017 04:23

This piece is amazing as your other works.
I thinks that the question you brought up with this is really necessary.
To the industry (AAA) pixel art is pretty much gone, because there is this mindset in the game community of achiving a time of realism equals to really, a true simulation of the world, so the more realist/figurative/3d it gets the better.
Ressurect by fans, i think pixel art (pixel artists often) trys to finds it's place as still worth as a media. And as such i think that works like this one pushes the limit of pixel art being JUST a nostalgia factor, a videogame-like illustration, a mimesis, to be a viable for-all type of ideas.

Awesome. Thanks Cure: "I don't claim to be an innovator, but I do have the political capital to push this approach through to the gallery. I don't expect it to become a legal precedent for what is considered kosher, but I hope it can encourage more inclusive attitudes toward styles that exist where "oekaki" and "pixel art" overlap, or at least get the conversation going on "how loose is Toulouse?" and how we measure control/intent when it comes to pixel placement."

orangemagik (Level 6 Time Traveller) @ 7/22/2017 19:24

I'm very glad this took it's place in the month top. Great experiment.

jeremy (Level 11 Sphinx) @ 7/21/2017 05:27


ptoing (Level 7 Cuttlefish) @ 7/4/2017 21:04

Yes, exactly. I have done this too, esp in commercial work. Using stuff like the smear mode in promotion to loosen areas up and then refining afterwards can work nicely. And if something ends up where you think it is cool while using "dirty" tools, that's fine. Just because pixelart let's us be incredibly anal does not mean we have to be all the time.

Also agree about the red, in that it is fine. The burn is very slight and it creates a nice colour dynamic imo.

cure (Level 11 Pixellite) @ 7/4/2017 18:11

Reo: Can't believe I forgot about Graindolium, always something fresh from him.

Cyangmou: Revolt is a strong word, just testing the waters. The blue is actually fully saturated, but you're right that the red burns a bit. I'm ok with that.

Conny Nordlund: I like the word "grit." I call it grain myself, but either seems preferable to "noise."

ptoing: I think the idea that the artist is allowed to "approve" unexpected pixel placement is key here.

Reo (Level 11 Sphinx) @ 7/4/2017 13:47

Graindolium has been exploring similar territory with mixed results too,  I quite enjoy this.

Cyangmou (Level 9 Federal Agent) @ 7/4/2017 01:30

Are you revolting and doing the impressionist thing now?

While I certainly do appreiate something fresh I am not too keen on the dark saturated reds next to the dark desaturated blues. Blue should be more towards green or the red more towards brown to fit in the overall colorscheme and to get rid of the eyeburn in the dark areas, aside from that it's super nice.

ptoing (Level 7 Cuttlefish) @ 7/3/2017 20:15

The main issue is that "pixelart" is a relatively new term. When I had my Amiga back between 92-95 and did doodles and animation in DPaint the term was not a thing. It was just drawing on a computer and it had some restrictions.

These restrictions are now completely gone with modern stuff like Photoshop (really they have been for a while), so I guess that is where that kinda purism comes from. People trying to codify the term "pixelart".

When I started doing pixelart in 2003 there was very much this feeling of this is good practise etc, and I think that there are things that are good practise, but it depends on what you want to do. Rules can be bent, rules can be broken, esp in "art"; Let's not try and make formulas for something that does not benefit from it, let alone need it.

I personally really like restrictions, because they are like a puzzle to me. But even on a system that is heavily restricted, like the C64, you can do something where someone on here would say: "But that is not pixelart."

The question about where to draw the line is a very valid one. When does a piece cease to be pixel art?
What if cure actually took very exacting care to where every pixel goes, which pixels he deletes, how he draws the squiggles?

If he did that would it be more pixelart than if he just noodled around half the time and then cleaned up only places he felt really needed it and left others in their originally doodle state.

Another good example is Helm's Death Walks. He has a link to the original Pixelation thread with progress snapshots. The final piece retains quite a few things from the first reduced step, apart from colour changes. Pixel placement stays, size reduction and aa decisions Helm did not make himself, but he approved them.

Or look at cure's liondog. Is that pixelart? IMO it is. There is intent, and cure chose to do it at low resolution with few (relatively speaking) colours. Intent is what matters, not what other people think should matter.

I am all for learning art fundamentals, it will benefit most people. But if we try and regiment pixelart too much and box it into some artificial shape we risk it becoming stale.

Experiments like this (which again, are nothing new really), are what keeps our perception of the medium fresh and help us grow. I for one would rather see way more stuff than this than having to look at a copy of a Secret of Mana tree ever again.

ConnyNordlund (Level 3 Sergeant) @ 7/3/2017 04:44

I will never understand this pureist mindset..

I think this is really cool and the rendering is refreshing. It's still hand placed pixel work and serves the piece. I think people get their marbles rumbled because it looks different and therefore it must be something "shady" going on.

People like rutine, I guess. As soon as anyone goes outside of that, some will feel awkward about it.

All that rambling out of the way; I think this is a very strong piece. The grit really works with the mood and the posture of the character really sells the setting.

The donkey looks a little bit goofy, though. Maybe it's because donkeys are generally depicted as silly and dumb? And having it look evil and stuff kinda makes it even more goofy. 

I hope you continue to explore this. I feel it has some kind of van gogh touch to it, stary night to name an example. I think the grit can be pushed in that sort of flow, leading the eye, to create an even stronger composition.

Keep up the great work, and again - I appreciate you pushing the boundries.

Scruffs (Level 7 Assassin) @ 7/2/2017 18:48

This is amazing. Great job!

cure (Level 11 Pixellite) @ 7/2/2017 18:35

Where do you draw the line, personally?

CELS (Level 7 Lotus) @ 7/2/2017 13:48

I certainly wouldn't call this pixel art, but it looks good. And it seems the flood gates are open already, so who cares.

orangemagik (Level 6 Time Traveller) @ 7/2/2017 06:09

This is great. I will be disappointed if this will be turned down for being non-kosher.

cure (Level 11 Pixellite) @ 7/1/2017 21:01

I think you're right about the figure in the distance. I've updated the image.

Amorph (Level 4 Sea Turtle) @ 7/1/2017 16:52

I like this a lot. Pushing the envelope to allow for more pixels of this nature is a good use of your political capital indeed.

Maybe it's just me, but I think the figure below the sun in the upper right is too large, which slightly disrupts the sense of distance conveyed by the atmospheric perspective. But it's a minor point, and it's not like accurate proportionality is even necessarily beneficial in an Impressionist-style piece.

MetinSeven (Level 2 Flatfoot) @ 7/1/2017 11:19

Great style! 

ParkerBabyDiaperCompany (Level 2 King Checker) @ 7/1/2017 10:13

The waifu2x version is awesome, and it shows clearly a lot of the lines made by the separate dots:

cure (Level 11 Pixellite) @ 7/1/2017 09:53

Friend: That's the idea. I don't claim to be an innovator, but I do have the political capital to push this approach through to the gallery. I don't expect it to become a legal precedent for what is considered kosher, but I hope it can encourage more inclusive attitudes toward styles that exist where "oekaki" and "pixel art" overlap, or at least get the conversation going on "how loose is Toulouse?" and how we measure control/intent when it comes to pixel placement.

There are a few works already in the gallery that, while not entirely similar to this piece, do share the qualities that have meant rejection for other work. Ptoing is right that there are a lot of parallels in the demoscene as well, but the closest parallel might be dogmeat's experiments from back in the day (which never made it in the gallery, obviously).

Friend (Level 1 Jukyu) @ 7/1/2017 09:01

it is a beautiful piece, but I feel less controlled pixels have been rejected many times over for that very reason. I like breaking the mold as much as the next guy, but where others have been declined, you seem to get a free pass to do so

skeddles (Level 11 Sphinx) @ 7/1/2017 07:38

Looks really cool at 1x, but higher than that is too noisy for me.

Mathias (Level 6 Garbage) @ 6/30/2017 22:44

u crazy boi!

Theoden (Level 10 Operative) @ 6/30/2017 05:45

Excellent stuff, digging the impressionist style.
Very cool lighting and scene.

upper0 (Level 3 Sergeant) @ 6/30/2017 04:19

This very marvelous!

wonman321 (Level 6 SWAT) @ 6/30/2017 02:00


The shading style is incredible.

moondrome (Level 7 Merfolk) @ 6/29/2017 12:30

meaning of the title?

cure (Level 11 Pixellite) @ 6/29/2017 10:53

Hapiel: Intention is a funny thing.

SnowOwl: That's how I feel about Seurat.

ptoing: Destroy all clusters. WIP steps here. As you can see I originally wanted Death riding a potato-rabbit but later decided on a donkey.

PBDC: I think so too, updated.

et al: This experiment is definitely inspired by impressionist, post-impressionist (van Gogh), and neo-impressionist (pointillism) techniques, as well as looser approaches I've seen at PJ over the years. Thanks for the feedback.

Fleja2003 (Level 7 Lotus) @ 6/29/2017 10:17

Whoa - this looks so so unique!

ParkerBabyDiaperCompany (Level 2 King Checker) @ 6/29/2017 09:34

I didn't know van Gogh had a PJ account. 

If that brightness is the donkey's eye, it looks like it is too high up on the head. 

A2J2TIWARI (Level 4 Murderer) @ 6/29/2017 09:01

And here comes the Pixel Art Impressionist Revolution!

Hail Cure!

Amazing piece!

ptoing (Level 7 Cuttlefish) @ 6/29/2017 09:01

Clu-what-ers? Looks pretty cool, and I would love to see a progress video of this, but I reckon that does not exist. Steps at least?

Another thing I have to think about, is the old discussion of pure pixelart and the like, and whether something like this would have been accepted if it was not done by someone well known like you.

Still great. Breaking the mold is good.

Edit: There have been other people who have done stuff similar to this in the demoscene, esp on Amiga, Mermaid for example. But never have I seen an attempt where the chaos was as controlled and effective looking as here.

Omrii (Level 4 Button Man) @ 6/29/2017 08:04

This like van Gogh's brush style but for pixel art. Stunning work.

SnowOwl (Level 6 SWAT) @ 6/29/2017 08:02

I can't really help but think that this would look better without the gimmick. But hey, if it tickles someones fancy, who am I to judge?

Eggy (Level 5 Detective) @ 6/29/2017 07:49

Oh, damn! I totally forgot about pointilism! Can't believe I was once taught that this art form existed and then subsequently failed to remember when I saw it here. I never was good with history anyway 

Pixelart_kid (Level 6 SWAT) @ 6/29/2017 07:44

Wow, pointillism in its purest expression.

Eggy (Level 5 Detective) @ 6/29/2017 07:39

For some reason, I can't help but feel that it looks a tad bit too noisy for my tastes 

I mean I really like the skeleton and the donkey and the composition is marvelous, but the scenery itself (the sky and the sand dunes(?)) just feels very distorted and baffles me a little lol  Was this an intended effect or...?

skittle (Level 9 Nidan) @ 6/29/2017 06:59

That's super cool. Looks so good at x1

edit: going to be a lot of " insert pixelplacement only critque here"  comment

Hapiel (Level 11 Bonsai) @ 6/29/2017 05:00

Nice work TomiCure! Amongst other things, I like the part where we have to guess if every pixel was placed intentionally. If this was made by anyone else I might have forwarded them to The Pixel Art Tutorial... Duchampian protest?

saulc12 (Level 8 Cannibal) @ 6/29/2017 02:03

That's is simultaneously grimm and lovely.

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