Archive for December, 2009

1. Design

Let's start with the blank canva. White background is usually nice, but we will draw on new transparent layer

Use paint tool and gray color to sketch the main shape of object

2. Outline

Draw outline using pencil on new transparent layer

And here is a bigger version (click to enlarge)

3. Basic colors

Compose the basic palette. I used 4 shades of gray. Next fill appropriate fields using magic wand tool and dragging color into it. (click to enlarge)

That how it looks like with filled polygons. (click to enlarge)

And smaller version with visible grid.

After some small clean ups.

4. Shades, shadows and texture

Use white brush on opacity 5-10% to add some pillow shading.

Now use pencil tool with opacity 7-15% to add some shadows and texture.

To achieve better pixelart look I decreased color space to 8 colors (Image->Mode->Indexed). Try to experiment with different values.

[ to be continued…]

5. Outline shading

6. Additional colors

7. Multiple variants – snow, grassland, desert

8. Why this rock sucks instead rocks

Recently I made my first animation – rotating wings for windmill made by IvanMorve.

Some of you might wonder how I did it. The truth is that was quite simple. Here is a small tutorial, step by step:


N1: Because vertical and horizontal perspective in TMW are quite the same, our wings will have ratio 100% of width and 70% of height. That ratio makes elliptic shape, and it’s impossible to rotate object after drawing it in this perspective.

N2: To shorten amount of time for this particular task we will use GIMP to rotate the wings – however when we rotate objects there is serious quality loss. To prevent that we will make base wing 2 times larger (512×512 instead 256×256), then rotate it making each frame of animation. At the end we scale it down to proper size and aspect ratio: 256×180 px.

N3: Because of wings symmetry we will make only one fourth part of frames.


S1: Inkscape design. Just a outline. Mine looks like this:

S2: Painting. I redraw wings in GIMP using tablet. Make sure that wings are symmetric.

S3: Now rotate this wings and save it in another file.
3FPS: 90/3 = 30 deg
4FPS: 90/4 = 22,5 deg
5FPS: 90/5 = 18 deg
6FPS: 90/6 = 15 deg
I made animations with 4fps and 8fps. And I must say that 8fps looks hell better then 4 ;)

S4: Scale down every image to correct size and perspective. In this case its 256 x 256*0,7  ~= 256 x 180 px

S5: Viola! Our frames are ready.