Pixel art belongs to one of the branches of digital graphics. Its driving tool is bitmap editing at the pixel level. At the same time, the resolution is reduced to such limits that you can visually see each pixel.
If you have a computer at home for a long time, and you caught the time when you could play non-full-featured computer games, then the concept of pixel art will not be new to you. The plots of such games were made exactly according to the principle of pixel processing. Today, many games for mobile applications are developed with the participation of such graphics.
A bit of history
For the first time, the concept of pixel art came to two developers of the Xerox Corporation in 1982. Pixel graphics have been used before during the design of computer games. When the color palette grew to 256 shades, pixel art squeezed out of the art world. But today it is also used in phone applications and banners. Few people know, but Windows icons are also pixel art.
Pixel art features
If you saw the concept of raster editing, then you might think that it refers directly to pixel art. Actually it is not. Pixel art is different in that it allows you to edit small drawings using each pixel individually. The result is small-format images with a limited set of colors.
Also in pixel art there is no anti-aliasing effect. To create a drawing from pixels, you will have to use the minimum set of raster editing tools – pencil, fill, lines. Additional tools, such as a brush, edit the drawing by adding new pixels without destroying the integrity of manual editing.
If you decide to create a pixel art drawing, then you need to remember that in this type of creativity, the minimum number of colors is used. The ideal option would be to use 16 standard colors. You can compare pixel art with banal cross-stitching, mosaic painting, beadwork. In all these types of creativity, the drawing is made up of segments.
Pros and cons of pixel art
Like any type of graphics, pixel art has its advantages and disadvantages. Let’s look at the pros first:
- easy to learn graphic style. Even without special education, even a schoolboy will master most computer programs for pixel graphics.
- small format finished material requires little storage space.
- if the quality of the color palette is poor, the pixel art will not be devoid of expressiveness.
- the pixel art style is available on low quality computers.
- on LCD monitors, the pixel pattern looks especially attractive.
And now for the cons:
- when changing the scale automatically and when changing the resolution, the drawing needs to be edited and corrected for a very long time.
- unacceptable in case of automatic rendering.
- on higher resolution monitors, such as LCDs with analog input, the pixel pattern
- will flicker.
How to draw
Like any other kind of design, pixel art starts with a sketch. It consists of simple strokes showing the general plan of the finished image. It is prepared by tracing the drawing through the scanner. There are other principles of drawing, but we have considered the most popular.
Limiting the color palette means applying the blur principle to get different shades. Due to the special characteristics and performance of pixel art, blurring is done manually. Saving the finished image occurs in the “lossless” mode. That is, so that after saving not a single pixel is erased and the accuracy remains unchanged.