Gradients, brushes and stuff.
Pixel art? Really?
submitted by -Anonymous
“Pixel art? Really?” It really, probably, isn’t pixel art! Here’s a brief reason why:
The artist should have control over the placement of each individual pixel as well as a limitation in palette and contrast in color ramps. Although the images displayed fit within the broad spectrum of art, whether or not they are well made is subjective to the artist/viewer and irrelevant to the topic. The purpose of this discussion is based on the methodology behind pixel art.
The primary function in pixel art is control. You must have the control to dictate where a pixel or a cluster of identical pixels are placed. Adding or removing a pixel can dramatically offset a shape. For this particular digital medium, certain tools are avoided: blur, gradient, smudge, and brushes that create automatic anti-aliasing or a blend between hues. Restricting the number of colors used can eliminate suspicion in using “cheat tools” while simultaneously emphasize light and shape.
Does that mean you have to knock your palette down from X-amount to be considered pixel art? No! It is, however, discouraged. The more colors you introduce, the less control you may have over the piece. Although, I would like to point out a very inspirational piece that has used only four colors to create the illusion of more: The Spartan by Helm. It goes to show that with restraint comes flexibility.
If you are learning or unfamiliar with pixel art, I highly encourage you review The Pixel Art Tutorial over at Pixel Joint forums. “The Pixel Art Tutorial” addresses common terms, the definition of pixel art (the differences between all digital imagery and oekaki), and how you can start creating it. Good luck!