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Blackmambuh (Level 1 Gangster) @ 6/18/2018 10:29


That sounds like a really cool idea!

pistachio (Level 1 Rookie) @ 6/18/2018 05:25


Agree, but it's how you stick those pieces together that creates drama. The gestalt. Including force OR motion (implicit thru I.E. strong gesture. Or explicit through frames, basically an optical illusion tho.) Drama often is the backbone of an effective piece, it fails as an afterthought. Unless the image's role is intended as symbolic, I.E., street sign. If there's no drama in its backbone (it references something else), then it succeeds in its goal. If I get you right.

"How should I think about art?"

Huge question.

Usually better just to make it.

for the small question (rendering), gonna buy this. I mean these days you could probably find solid stuff for free as well, but it looks comprehensive and stretches into our digital age. Maybe sheds insight.

But I'll link to stuff I find if it applies here.

neota (Level 7 Ichikyu) @ 6/18/2018 00:56

@pistachio : I think we are more or less on the same page. I especially agree with "They're not discrete but they reinforce each other in some way"

Another way of splitting it up could be analytic vs dramatic. Perhaps my comment about pixelblobs makes more sense in that context: The emphasis of an edge adds drama; the size of a flat-color blob before it transitions to another color == further emphasis of that edge. ergo, working with larger brushes or shape-cuts ~= rapidly dramatizing the picture. Working with thin lines ~= conserving drama so you can work out problems more clearly.

Vector = force? I'd prefer to categorize vector as motion, which can be considered as a superset or abstraction of force (the geometry of an object can be considered as a collection of motions through space, but an animated object also describes, as a whole, a motion through space).

I haven't had much luck finding discussion of the abstract question "How should I think about art?", personally. But Nicolaïdes' "Natural Way to Draw" is a stand out in this regard, focusing heavily on sound mental framing rather than technique.

eishiya (Level 5 Detective) @ 6/17/2018 16:33

@Kasumi: Not for me :'D Periodically looking over recently edited areas is way less work than saving a PNG copy, running an external tool, opening the result, and then finding each relevant pixel in the original file. Of course, a plugin or script that selects all isolated pixels without leaving the program is even more convenient, but not all programs support those.

Like pistachio said though, since you've already made it, you should put it out there! Even if it's poorly documented and doesn't have robust error handling, it can still be useful.

GDI now I'm tempted to polish up the Photoshop script I wrote to select isolated pixels a while back. I don't even use Photoshop for pixel art anymore ._.

Kasumi (Level 1 Rookie) @ 6/17/2018 11:00

@eishiya: Surely the inconvenience of doing it by eye is even greater?

@pistachio: I have many such tools on my hard drive that would take longer to write error checks, documentation and proper "CLI citizen" support for than they took to write. That's why I want to know if anyone would actually use it.

Otherwise I'll settle for continuing to maintain my niche minimal animated png->NES ROM tool, which no one uses but at least benefits me personally. https://i.imgur.com/fCyZuar.gif

pistachio (Level 1 Rookie) @ 6/17/2018 03:01


Like I said, mostly an issue of sematics, interpretation, that kind of thing. Lack of clarity seems to be mostly on my side, so I'll have to brush up on definitions when I have the time. But "vector" seems a little more lax in comparison to "blueprint" so you could be going somewhere by revising it. I.E. there could be ways to apply some "vector" (as force) to a representationally rendered image in its content...then content, apart from rendering, that's another dimension which muddles the waters. They're not discrete but they reinforce each other in some way, best case scenario.

Not sure what Neiborg's or eishiya's pixelblobs have to do with it (tho I'm with you on cranking out as much as possible at first stage = dynamism). Sure the method/workflow sometimes gives the output a different flavor. Same goes for the medium. But the mental image is where it starts, everything else is the means to that end, including blobs. It's just as much skill that keeps you from getting damn close.

Tricky stuff to handle. But those dealing with visual fields usually walk away richer from such broad discussions IMO.

^Yeesh, off the rails. I'll take my advice and hit some books in my spare time.


Dude, just put it out there. Always like niche minimal software. Sounds neat.


Failure is always an option! etc.

neota (Level 7 Ichikyu) @ 6/16/2018 17:33

..Although with an external tool, you can hook it up to file notification[1] so that every time you save your work, an image viewer pops up showing the result of isolation-checking it.

On a slightly different subject, it should be possible to override the output filename via parameter (eg. check pic.png output.png or check -o output.png pic.png ). This is a matter of being a proper "CLI citizen" -- and the latter form would also allow the user to make a custom launcher that uses their preference of output filename.

[1] eg. inotify on linux; there is a comparable system on Windows IIRC.

eishiya (Level 5 Detective) @ 6/16/2018 12:14

Kasumi: Having it as an external tool rather than a plug-in one can use while working defeats the convenience of having such a tool in the first place, I feel ):

AirStyle (Level 6 SWAT) @ 6/16/2018 06:35

I'm not sure if anyone's mentioned this before, but I thought I'd put it out there:

I think that it would be nice, either here or in the "New World", to allow artists to set a default zoom level for their pieces, so that when someone clicks on their piece, it's automatically zoomed in at that level.

I say this because I'm seeing a lot of new pieces with the phrase "Best viewed at 2x", or something like that. Setting that when you post it would allow the artist to present her piece in the best way, and potentially keep people from posting "Big pixel" pieces, knowing it has a default zoom function.

Kasumi (Level 1 Rookie) @ 6/15/2018 08:19

Some informal interest check. I wrote a piece of software that checks for and marks isolated pixels because so many who do the "no single pixels" do so by eye. Would there be enough interest in me releasing it? I'm aware there were some plugins made for other software, this is just a command line thing you drag a png over and it gives you a marked _checked.png.

king_bobston (Level 10 Capo) @ 6/15/2018 02:25

How are you supposed to know what to stick with, without experimenting a lot?

And I think even if you've found your very own direction you want to follow, that you can still benefit greatly from looking at different things and integrating parts into your own works.

Dastal (Level 7 Assassin) @ 6/15/2018 02:15

Mediocre? Why do you care about that, you can't make perfect things when you experiment something.

You are tough with yourself, a lot of people (if not everyone) who want to improve are like this.

I don't know what those people really said, and why they're saying that but stick to one thing could became a trap. If I had listen people in 2011/2013, I would probably stoped pixel art because the pokemon pixel art fanbase is dying...

Well, I just write something about what I think,from my experience, from what I saw during all these years on deviantart,pixeljoint and other...  But I'm not you, and you're not me, my advice can't fit to everyone and I can say some bullshit. x)

But the most important thing is, do what you want.

DieMango (Level 6 Made) @ 6/14/2018 12:18

Doing studies but get super frustrated when it doesnt work...oceanscented is probably te first style i kinda am capable to do cause its not to far from my useal stuff...But some people said i shoud stick to one thing instead of making multiple mediocre diffrent styled ones...

Dastal (Level 7 Assassin) @ 6/14/2018 05:17

Well, I maybe not the best to give advices but, doubt about skills/capacity isn't a good thing.

Are you improving? Sure and you have some recoil about your art and maybe you are not totally satisfy about the result, but here's a secret, a lot of us here (and not only in pixeljoint) think the same about they're work.

Now, if you want to improve, well like Skeddles said, you have to practice, drawing is a good thing. Its something I personnally do in order to improve.

There is also experimentation. Don't be afraid to try other style/thing, (but don"t make something you don't want to do, don't force yourself)

I personnally love to examinate other pixel artists work, and try to imitate them, not in order to just be a copycat, but in order to extract the thing I love in their Pixel art and discover other way to use pixel. Don't wait an "april fools weekly" or something alike, to do this 

Don't be afraid to check the work of your favorite artist (not only pixel) you can learn a lot this way.

And there's another thing,  enjoy what you are doing, don't care about other could think about that.

Yeah, everyone give some love to Delicious, he deserve it. 

edit: sorry for that engrish, I can really be a cringy guy sometime. 

ParkerBabyDiaperCompany (Level 4 Team Leader) @ 6/13/2018 16:22

Who isn't depressed, am I right? 

EdJr (Level 8 Shodan) @ 6/13/2018 09:39

I've been back to lurk mode but felt bad to see that no one has said a word to Delicious yet.

I (and I'm sure many others here) love you too, man. I really hope you're better (or getting better)! Feel free to talk about it if you ever feel like you need to.

skeddles (Level 11 Psychopath) @ 6/13/2018 07:43

Then just practice drawing, and practice the things at you're worst at. Only way to improve.

DieMango (Level 6 Made) @ 6/13/2018 05:45


I feel like i still cant draw the things i wanna draw. Am i improving? 

Slowly doubting my pixelart skills D:

Reo (Level 11 Sensei) @ 6/11/2018 23:05

Thanks for the birthday wishes guys! :D

neota (Level 7 Ichikyu) @ 6/11/2018 18:00

@eishiya: That (explicitly specifying a non-continuous method) explains it. Non-continuity is something I scrupulously avoid, because it seems to impair my sense of the image as a whole. I'm always aiming to draw as continuously as possible, and to complete the basic layout within 60 seconds (with the context that working this fast gives me more ability to try out alternatives before committing). That IME pushes dynamism to a level I'm kind of happy with.

So I guess you could say personal preference or individual weakness (Dynamism/feel seems very difficult to maintain a grip on, for me). I agree with your observations in general so it makes sense the particular approach you describe could work for others who are better at hanging onto that initial feel.


IIRC I'd called it 'graphic vs vector'. But perhaps 'graphic vs blueprint' is more apt. I've kept on thinking about it, but not sure if anything is new. The recent discussion about working from blobs could probably be considered in those terms (as a clearly 'graphic' way of approaching design, with the relative size of your brush indicating degree of graphicness.)

Still not sure whether it maps onto symbolic vs representational. To me, it looks like more of a lean -- working graphically pushes you somewhat towards symbolic presentation, working based on vectors pushes you somewhat towards representational presentation.

king_bobston (Level 10 Capo) @ 6/11/2018 13:28

I used to be pixelling with mouse and felt tablet lacked the pixel precission I had with my mouse but after getting used to pixelling with a tablet I can't go back anymore. The precission is just an adaption to pixelling with tablet and the right level of zooming (iirc I'm zooming in a bit more when I start the detailing phase). Now a mouse feels too clunky to pixel. I'm not 100% sure what makes it feel clunky but it could be speed or the different headspace. It just feels forced now and doesn't has such a nice flow that I get with a tablet after the adaption phase.

As far as workflow itself goes, I can't say I remember doing things much differently. Only thing I think that changed is the level of zoom when I do details but even there I'm not absolutly sure since I abandoned the way of the mouse for years now.

pistachio (Level 1 Rookie) @ 6/11/2018 04:04

Aye, happy b-day Reo.

re: mouse

IDK...Usually using a wireless mouse for pixels for years. Mouse is more solid and predictable to me and I can pull some sort of dynamic first step out of it. But I've been told I have a pretty f*cking steady hand. Then towards the finishing stages most PA has a more finite number of solutions so where's a problem if you can hide it? Mouse is more precise there. (This part of the argument has more weight IMO.)

Maybe I'm missing out. For anything requiring vitality and subtle stuff, you definitely take what you can get. And even the mighty tablet only picks up so much compared to traditional (what the mouse picks up, + pressure, XY tilt, done.)

But it's still improving. We'll see 'em holograms one day...

...Ok, pen and paper is occasionally with me for more serious pixel projects. Might have to try more often. Valid reasons discussed before me.

BTW @neota anything further on your graphic-symbolic-semantics-thing you brought up way back?

Hapiel (Level 11 Admiral) @ 6/10/2018 14:41


eishiya (Level 5 Detective) @ 6/10/2018 12:55

@neota: Can't say I've encountered those problems o: Like I said, it takes a different approach (mentally) - for example, there should generally be no need to do two strokes in quick succession in the same location, the idea is that you plop your blob down, then move on to a dufferent object. Refining happens later in multiple stages as you work your way down to smaller brush/blob sizes. It very much requires a "eh, feck it" approach, where you don't care about the exact shape you get. The initial strokes might not in themselves be dynamic, but they can still communicate the idea in your mind, and their shapes are refined later into something swooshier.

Irenaart (Level 7 Sheriff) @ 6/10/2018 06:29

@Reo; Happy bday! 

neota (Level 7 Ichikyu) @ 6/9/2018 18:04

Eh, blobs+large to small is my typical method of working, but I can't say it's even anywhere close to being as easy with mouse as it is with tablet.

Mainly this seems to be related to the weight of the mouse relative to tablet stylus.

* making two strokes in quick succession is difficult to do at all; it's stroke, stop, reposition, stroke.

* large strokes work (if you have the right technique - lock elbow+wrist, rotate shoulder), small strokes get polygonized (by muscle mechanics, not by the computer)

ParkerBabyDiaperCompany (Level 4 Team Leader) @ 6/9/2018 11:14

eishiya (Level 5 Detective) @ 6/9/2018 10:56

neota: When working with blobs and working from large to small, it's not hard to get the same dynamism in a preparatory sketch with a mouse as with a stylus/pencil. I don't know how he works, but this is a viable approach. It's definitely quite different to using lines or to getting the "right" shape with both thick and thin features in a single stroke, and it requires a somewhat different "head space", but I wouldn't say it's harder or more limited.

skeddles (Level 11 Psychopath) @ 6/9/2018 08:56


neota (Level 7 Ichikyu) @ 6/9/2018 07:23

It's interesting that Henk still prefers mouse so heavily over tablet for PA. I guess the slack (dynamicness / design speed / etc) must be being taken up by preparatory sketches in traditional mediums.

Which is something that he doesn't comment on in this interview, but I think someone else has interviewed him previously..

Delicious (Level 8 Regional Boss) @ 6/8/2018 17:58

Hey guys! Love you all. Wishing to be back posting more soon. Depression really sucks. 

neota (Level 7 Ichikyu) @ 6/8/2018 07:09

pxltrm : a keyboard-based (vi keys!) pixel art editor for Linux/OSX terminal.

Written in pure BASH, which is possibly more hilarious than the concept itself.

Kind of touches on ascii art a little, but REXPaint is probably better if that's what you're interested in.

Hapiel (Level 11 Admiral) @ 6/7/2018 15:46

Hey PJers, I thought I'd let you know that I'll be much less active here for the next 3 months as I'll be having a lot of work over summer, but don't worry I'm not Jalling on you! I'll be back in September to pick up my modding duties again :)

ROM (Level 1 Private) @ 6/6/2018 03:20

And now, the mutation is already well underway, here is the era Pixel Effect Joint 2.0, a page turns.


skeddles (Level 11 Psychopath) @ 6/4/2018 17:03

Lemme know when someone's translated it

Taertage (Level 1 Gangster) @ 6/3/2018 11:39

BTW, people made a modified ROM of Pokemon Gold Spaceworld '97 Prototype that starts the storymode instead of the demo. You get to pick a lvl 5 starter and then you get to fight the rival. The fire starter has to battle 6 rival pokemon, the first of which is a lvl 157 MissingNo. The water and grass starter have to battle a lvl 10 Meowth or lvl 9 Slowking, resp. The rival is thus unbeatable, and the story seemingly halts after cheating this first battle.


People are still data-mining and translating. I wonder if there is more to the prototype story. For some reason I find these old insights more interesting than the newer instalments with overdesigned and/or derivative pokemon (it's not all bad).

Hapiel (Level 11 Admiral) @ 6/3/2018 10:21

, even people in circusses can have good taste :p

jeremy (Level 11 Special Agent) @ 6/3/2018 04:37

beedrill looks like he's waiting for the bus

Irenaart (Level 7 Sheriff) @ 6/3/2018 04:24

@FrostPumpkin; Happy birthday!

StoneStephenT (Level 8 Guerrilla) @ 6/3/2018 01:30

Meowsy needs to be a real Pokémon NOW.

cure (Level 11 Godfather) @ 6/2/2018 17:55

Didn't notice Girafarig, the original design is definitely better. Catdog ftw.

re: porygon 2: You work in a circus and you don't appreciate balloon animals or lions? Shame!

Hapiel (Level 11 Admiral) @ 6/2/2018 17:04

I never understood Girafarig. I think his original makes more sense. Also I enjoy the original Politoed

I think the early smoochum is too jynxy. Miltank hardly changed, I think the new one is fine?

Though I like the old Magby, I can imagine that in b/w it might have looked like a grass type... The new one is more fire-like..

Otherwise I agree with all of your comments, nothing to debate... :p

And geez, who designed that porygon2? Ouch

cure (Level 11 Godfather) @ 6/2/2018 16:38


sprites I love: charizard, dugtrio, muk, jynx

new pokemon that don't suck: ikari, hinaazu

pokemon whose offical designs are worse than their prototypes: octillery, smoochum, magby, miltank, lickilicky

deb8 me

Hapiel (Level 11 Admiral) @ 6/2/2018 13:09

You can't say those kind of things witout giving us some links :o


Taertage (Level 1 Gangster) @ 6/2/2018 12:01

Maybe you guys have already seen this, but very early prototypes of Pokemon Gold and Silver from Nintendo Space World 1997 were recently leaked. It is just mindblowing to see all those original pokemon that were scrapped or redesigned.

We missed out on a separate pokemon to go on slowbo's tail, a pinsir evolution, Qwilfish evolution, etc

Irenaart (Level 7 Sheriff) @ 6/2/2018 08:06

Happy birthday Finlal!!!

pyrometal (Level 8 Guerrilla) @ 5/30/2018 17:44

Don't worry about it Hap, I just went ahead and removed the duplicates since I noticed Reo's notification earlier as well.

Hapiel (Level 11 Admiral) @ 5/30/2018 17:07

oh no! I accidentally clicked that button while making teamwork compo awards, but i thought nothing had happened. Thanks for letting me know, I'll fix it tomorrow... 

Reo (Level 11 Sensei) @ 5/30/2018 14:37

Seems like the Awards for April's HoF got awarded twice! ( Not that I mind the double trophies)

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