The Atomic Calamity

The Atomic Calamity

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The Atomic Calamity

Title: The Atomic Calamity
Pixel Artist: CELS  (Level 7 Lotus :: 19544 points)
Posted: 8/16/2011 21:30
Palette: 6 colors
Statistics:  13 comments    1 faves    0 avatars

Coming from the world of tomorrow, the Atomic Calamity is here to protect the west from the communists! His greatest superpower is the ability to create nuclear explosions of any size, at will! As it happens, this is also his only superpower, so whenever the Atomic Calamity appears, there is always a risk of collateral damage. Even when helping with trivial problems such as saving cats from tall trees, the Atomic Calamity must often resort to nuclear explosions of appropriate size, bringing the tree down to save the cat. Unfortunately, this often causes nuclear fallout, giving the cat cancer from radiation and eventually killing it.

God bless the Atomic Calamity!

EDIT: Fixed some things. Original version here.

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CELS (Level 7 Lotus) @ 8/27/2011 20:12

Thanks a lot! I was worried that it would only be funny in my own head. I kept thinking of Cave Johnson from Portal 2. "We're gonna have a superconductor turned up full blast and pointed at you for the duration of this next test. I'll be honest, we're throwing science at the wall here to see what sticks. No idea what it'll do. Probably nothing. Best-case scenario, you might get some superpowers. Worst case, some tumors, which we'll cut out."

1950's, most hilarious decade ever, hands down.

bobowitzbob (Level 4 Team Leader) @ 8/27/2011 19:11

Absolutely hilarious description and image.

CELS (Level 7 Lotus) @ 8/20/2011 11:47

Thanks, guys. Frost Butt, I know what you mean. Retro art loses its charm if you don't recognise the original style. Not to say that I've captured it perfectly, but still.

Stickman (Level 7 Sheriff) @ 8/20/2011 08:59

This is cute!

Friend (Level 3 Hatchikyu) @ 8/19/2011 16:03

CELS, upon seeing the piece from the perspective of something like a 1950's comic, I REALLY enjoy this piece.  Sometimes you just have to look at art in the right light

CELS (Level 7 Lotus) @ 8/18/2011 07:25

@Manupix: Thanks for your comment. I agree that the windows were poorly executed. I was worried about the perspective, but you're right that cheating looks better. Regarding the overall perspective, I don't think there's anything technically wrong with it. Regardless of the position of the horizon, clouds can be placed pretty much anywhere. And the dark cloud beneath the nuclear mushroom would be like an approaching sandstorm, surging across the city. From ground level, it will look like it's high up. Of course, it makes no sense that the other side of the skyscraper is all peaceful and blue, but that's obviously artistic license. So, I'm open to the possibility that I've miscalculated, and certainly that my composition is poorly executed, but I don't think it's technically wrong.

With a larger palette, I could certainly tone down some of the outlines in the background. But in order to emulate the 1950s comic book look, you need sharp outlines to a certain extent. Actually, I recently realized that old comic books do have some similarities with pixel art. Because they usually had a very limitted palette to work with, they were forced to resort to dithering, for example.

CELS (Level 7 Lotus) @ 8/18/2011 07:18

Oh well, at least I got the cape and colors right! 

@Artic: High five on being Fallout fans. We liked it before it was cool to like it.

Thanks for your detailed feedback! I've tried to add some AA, though I'm not very good at it (and I have few colors to work with). I couldn't figure out how to improve the side of the head, because making it a pixel wider is too wide, and I want the curve to be sharp around the cheekbone.  I got rid of the cloud, which wasn't really working. I have a fascination of sunlight piercing clouds, but not enough space to work with here.

Manupix (Level 11 Godfather) @ 8/17/2011 13:41

I love the colors. I agree the rest leaves room for improvement ;)

My biggest cringe is perspective, which is inconsistent between foreground and buildings one one hand (strongly wide angle, upwards shot) and the bg on the other. In other words, the horizon line for the fg would be the image bottom, while for the nuke it would be at least in the middle.

Maybe replacing the cloud with a sun would at least help a little. I don't have a clear idea of a solution for the bomb,since the right side buildings would hide anything at some distance.

Next, the windows are really sloppy! It's ok to make them simple 1x2 lines, but please make them clean and even! I see you tried to follow the perspective and make them progressively more angled, but I think this is where cheating would help the line work: just keep them parallel.

I'm also sure there would be ways to avoid (or tone down) the outlines (bldgs, people) on the right side. Obvious outlines on the main char only help to separate him from the bg.

A little AA is definitely needed too.

Artic (Level 5 Rokkyu) @ 8/17/2011 10:48


just kidding :)

As for simplicity, thats never a bad thing. However, a little AA couldnt hurt, could it? just a very little to smooth it out since its such a small image. Also, the upper left side of the head looks a little bit iffy. Maybe try to give it a little more curve? Oh yeah, and maybe add one more ray of sunlight all the way on the left side of the cloud just to make it more symmetrical. And speaking of rays of light, coming from a cloud? Its that supposed to be like that? Adding the sun behind the clouds if definitely an option, I dont think it matters to much either way, but you might want to look into that.

PS I really like the cape. I dont know why but it looks really good!

CELS (Level 7 Lotus) @ 8/16/2011 23:42

Nazi Germany invaded my pixel art. But it's fixed now.

Chibiwing (Level 4 Deputy) @ 8/16/2011 23:23

Hail Hitler?  What's with the poses of the people in the bg?

CELS (Level 7 Lotus) @ 8/16/2011 22:09

Thanks for the comment. If there's anything in particular that comes to mind, I'd be very interested in advice.

The thing about this piece is that I wanted to stick with the 6 colors. And it's a small canvas, so I didn't feel like I could use a lot of dithering. I wanted to emulate the simplicity of 1950's comics, both in the design and the colours. That is why I used black outlines, for example. Of course, the hero himself is inspired by the Fallout universe Pip Boy. I could have used 24 extra colors to create some depth and better shades, but that's not where I wanted to go with this.

So if anyone has any feedback with the above in mind, I'd be very grateful indeed.

Friend (Level 3 Hatchikyu) @ 8/16/2011 22:01

I really like the main idea and composition, but being familiar with your other pieces, I KNOW you could've done much better.

but that's okay, like no point in giving 110% to every single project

Related & Tags

superhero, The Atomic Calamity avatars, The Atomic Calamity icons, The Atomic Calamity pixel art, The Atomic Calamity forum avatars, The Atomic Calamity AOL Buddy Icons

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