Tutorials

I've had a lot of questions asking how I draw my pixel art, so I've tried to explain my work process here ^_^

Drawing Bases
20th April, 2012

Drawing both a chibi base and larger anime-styled base.

Beginning Pixel Art
4th March, 2008

The very basics of pixelling to get you started making your own pixel art.

How to use Microsoft Paint
3rd March, 2008

Using Microsoft Paint to create your pixel art and pixel dolls.

Basic Pixel Doll Tutorial
5th March, 2008

Step by step examples showing how to sketch and shade a pixel doll.

Shading & Lighting
8th April, 2010

Using basic shapes to illustrate shadow and light placement.

Adding a Pattern
21st January, 2012

Adding patterns when making a pixel doll.

Animation Tutorial with GIMP
27th January, 2010

Introducing animation using GIMP by making a pixel doll blink.

Making a Deviantart Icon
28th January, 2010

Creating a 50x50 icon for use in places such as DeviantArt.com

Palettes and Theme Generator
12th February, 2010

Various colour palettes for pixel art, as well as a random theme generator.

Basic Pixel Doll Tutorial

5th March, 2008
Easy
In this tutorial, you'll be able to see the principles learnt from the basic tutorial being used to create a pixel doll.

The base used in this tutorial is the Zephyr base - you can use another one if you like, but try to keep it small so that you can practice your pixel placement.
Picking your Nose Idea
The most important part! (No, it's not actually picking your nose >>) But hey, you're supposed to have fun with creativity right?

First you'll need to come up with an idea of what to pixel, because all good things have to start somewhere. This will also make the entire process much easier as you'll have a direction to go in. I'm going to pixel me with an orange! X3 You could try pixelling yourself with your favourite fruit
Editing the Base
I want to pixel me holding on to the top of the orange...but there isn't a pose for it in the Zephyr base set. So, I need to make one!


All I need is the head from the Zephyr base, then to draw the arms, so it looks like it's peering over the top of something.

I do allow editing of my bases. However, before editing someone else's base, check their rules to make sure they allow it, or if they don't mention it, email them to ask if it's allowed ;
Drawing the Line Art

With the base done, I can now sketch out my idea ^_^ A sketch is very important as it will give you the size and composition of your piece. There's nothing worse than spending hours pixelling something only to find it's drawn on the wrong angle, or is the wrong size and you have to redo it x_x

Above, you can see my sketch - I've got the orange, an orange segment and some leaves/flowers to garnish Make sure that your sketch isn't too messy, it should be relatively clear which parts are which.

Above is my refined sketch - I've taken the sketch lines down to 1px in thickness, which gives me my final line art. This step is very important to have your final work look clean and tidy.

You should be able to see the principles from the basic tutorial clearly here - there are curves everywhere! o.o
Choosing Colours
My colours are pretty well chosen for me - they'll be based around the orange I've drawn; warm, vibrant, citrus colours. So, orange, green, lemons and white ^_^


In the image above, you can see that I've filled the areas with a flat base colour, ready for shading later. Notice on the orange segment that I've separated the orange peel and inside flesh with colours, rather than using an outline - this is because adding outlines would separate the areas too much (and probably be too thick), making them look disconnected.

Colour theory is a bit too much to explain here >> But keeping to colours that are close to each other in the rainbow (like blue and purple, or yellow and green or red and orange) should keep your colours matching quite nicely.

Just don't go with something like the default colour palettes in Paint of fluorescent green, fuchsia purple, and bright blue, I've seen it used a lot by beginners, and it hasn't worked well at all @_@
Coloured Line Art

Having decided on the base colours, I coloured the outlines with a darker colour than the base colour inside it - dark green for the leaves, dark orange for the orange, peach for the flower outlines etc.

You can skip this step depending on the style you're going for, but I find it blends things better later to give a nice overall finish ^_^
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