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Pixel Art Tutorial - Basics for Beginners by Gasara Pixel Art Tutorial - Basics for Beginners by Gasara
I've been asked rather a lot recently how I make my pixel art, what program do I use, how do I make avatars..? I thought about making a quick little tutorial explaining the hows of my pixel art but then it occured to me that some people might need a little more than that. Some of you might not have the first clue of what pixel art is or how you go about making it but still want to give it a go. This tutorial is for you guys. If you've played around with pixel art before or have read other tutorials then you probably don't need this but if you've never seen anything beyond someone's icon on dA then please pull up a chair.

I also just want to say please don't be put off by its wordiness. I'm a very visual person, I learn better from images and diagrams than descriptions, but for some reason my tutorials seem to end up as a wall of text. I think it's somewhat justified in this case as I've tried to explain things rather then just saying 'this is how you do it, you don't need to know why'. Sometimes that extra information can be beneficial.

I always think of Delia Smith in situations like this, when she started her How To Cook programme and spent half an hour explaining how to boil an egg. People called it condescending and ludicrous but the fact of the matter is if you don't know how to turn on a cooker and heat water to boiling point then simply telling you to 'put an egg in a saucepan of water and boil it for five minutes' isn't going to help you at all. Sometimes you really need to explain everything. I love you, Delia ♥

I really do hope some of you find this useful. Remember though that this is just a guide based on what I know of pixel art and how I work with it. You'll naturally develop your own techniques over time and how you colour will reflect how you might colour digitally or paint traditionally - and all of that is perfectly okay. Wonderful, really, because uniqueness is great. And like I mention in the tutorial, there are loads of other things you can look into if you're interested, such as anti-aliasing, isometric pixel art, creating palettes... There's so many great ways to work with pixel art, and so many wonderful things to create. So good luck, guys, and remember to have fun.

Oh, and if you create your first piece of pixel art using this tutorial then I really would love to see. Feel free to link to it in the comments so I can take a look. :tighthug:

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--> Pixel Art: Basics for Beginners
--> Pixel Art: Animation for Beginners

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I'm posting this tutorial up in time for Gasara's Birthday Celebration Contests. Hopefully some of you will be able to join me in making March pixelicious and joyous!
Add a Comment:
 
:iconchagguk:
chagguk Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2019
Thank you sooo much! Due to your tutorial (the art is very pretty, also) I was able to do my first pixel art, that is my icon~
Reply
:iconjayeagle:
JayEagle Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2018  Student Digital Artist
Pixel practise of Mecha by JayEagle  thank you! this is my first pixel!
Reply
:iconruiyoghurt:
RuiYoghurt Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This helped me sooooo much, thank youu!!~ ruiyoghurt.deviantart.com/art/…
Reply
:iconsharkbait703:
sharkbait703 Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2017
Thanks for the tutorial! I made my avatar using it!
Bodhi no background by sharkbait703
Reply
:iconaquamarinesans:
aquamarinesans Featured By Owner Jul 29, 2017  Student General Artist
That's really good!
Reply
:iconbr0kvn:
Br0kvn Featured By Owner May 23, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
tysm for this tutorial, its so helpful aH <3
Reply
:iconremachez84:
ReMaCHeZ84 Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2017  Professional Filmographer
buen trabajo! muy útil para empezar tanto en pixel art como en gimp (y)
Reply
:iconerick-the-druid:
Erick-the-Druid Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2017  Student General Artist
This was very helpful! It was thorough yet to the point. Being an impatient person, I loved being able to get started in a matter of minutes. I'm hooked now; pixeling is really fun. :D
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2017  Professional General Artist
Ah, that's great. All the best with your pixeling! :la:
I understand that feeling of impatience too!
Reply
:iconimmakitten:
Immakitten Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Helped me so much
Reply
:iconorangerubber:
OrangeRubber Featured By Owner Jun 27, 2016  Hobbyist
Where can i donloud this prog?
Reply
:iconangelinia:
Angelinia Featured By Owner Edited Jul 2, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Here: www.gimp.org/downloads/ Just click the orange button that says "Download Gimp 2.8.16 directly" and it will start downloading.:D (Big Grin) I hope this helps. I downloaded GIMP today, and its a bit confusing because of the many tools and options, but there are many tutorials, plus GIMP is free.:excited: 
Reply
:iconimmakitten:
Immakitten Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I just got it! Thanks!
Reply
:iconangelinia:
Angelinia Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You are very welcome! :iconheartrollplz:
Reply
:iconnanajane:
NanaJane Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2016
But it is not a prog to make animation...
Reply
:iconangelinia:
Angelinia Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I don't know, but many people use it to make pixel icons.
Reply
:iconnanajane:
NanaJane Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2016
Sorr. I got it!
Reply
:iconangelinia:
Angelinia Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Its okay! GIMP is very confusing for meSweating a little...  I guess it will take a few days to learn how to animate.
Reply
:iconrepixelate:
RePixelate Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2016  Student Digital Artist
you can use it to animate too ^-^ just a little more complicated www.gimp.org/tutorials/Simple_…
Reply
:iconangelinia:
Angelinia Featured By Owner Jul 28, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That is okay :D I think I will learn it with practice.
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconorangerubber:
OrangeRubber Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2016  Hobbyist
Thank you mis = )
Reply
:iconjetmcleod:
jetmcleod Featured By Owner May 26, 2016
Thanks for making this tutorial!  Here's my first pixel art: jetmcleod.deviantart.com/art/J…
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2016  Professional General Artist
Ah, that's fantastic! :love:
Reply
:iconjetmcleod:
jetmcleod Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2016
Thank you! 
Reply
:iconrahula87:
Rahula87 Featured By Owner May 24, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you so much, this is extremely helpful!!! Thanks to it i managed to create my first pixel art icon^^
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2016  Professional General Artist
Ah, that's great! :hug:
Reply
:iconrahula87:
Rahula87 Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
You are welcome :)
Reply
:icontanomi-awron:
Tanomi-Awron Featured By Owner Edited May 4, 2016   General Artist
Alright, so I've made a pixel avatar, but it won't allow me to submit it as so. I put the scale to 50x50 pixels and checked and as it isn't a gif(yet) it is only 8KB. When I go to upload it I get this: We can't display this image to resize. Please try a different one. 
        What am I doing wrong? (ALso-Thank you so so much for this. It helped my struggling self A LOT)

                 EDIT: ...I figured it out. I apologize. BUT thanks much once again! You're p great!
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner May 7, 2016  Professional General Artist
Ah, great! Sorry I couldn't respond quicker but I'm glad you've got it sorted. :hug:
Reply
:icontanomi-awron:
Tanomi-Awron Featured By Owner May 7, 2016   General Artist
Oh no you're great! Thank you!
Reply
:iconheartsofinsanity:
HeartsofInsanity Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
thanks so much ^w^
i'm not done with it but i'm getting a hang of it >w< Sans lel 
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner May 7, 2016  Professional General Artist
No problem at all! :dance:
Reply
:iconsiranajhelena:
SiranaJHelena Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks a lot for making this tutorial! It's really helpful and easy to understand. ^^
Here's what I made with your help: siranajhelena.deviantart.com/a…
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner May 7, 2016  Professional General Artist
No problem at all. Your icon is amazing! :love:
Reply
:iconsiranajhelena:
SiranaJHelena Featured By Owner May 7, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you very much! ^^
Reply
:iconoctavetothink:
OctaveToThink Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
Thank you for this tutorial, it helped me improve my pixel art! Hug  Here's the pony avatar I made: Avatar
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner May 7, 2016  Professional General Artist
Ah, you're welcome! Your pony is great!
Reply
:iconoctavetothink:
OctaveToThink Featured By Owner May 7, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
:D (Big Grin) 
Reply
:iconkyrowan:
KyRowan Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm in love with this icon :iconhaltbrowplz:

so I want to try Pixel art :aww:
Reply
:iconamsa95:
amsa95 Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
;3; this motivated me a lot to start pixel art .. and i think i improved a lot since then ^v^
;;v;; thank you gasara  Heart 
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2016  Professional General Artist
Ah, that's really nice to hear. Your pixel art is wonderful! :love:
Reply
:iconamsa95:
amsa95 Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
;;v;; ahhhh thank you Llama Emoji-10 (Shy) [V1] :iconuhuhuhuplz:
Reply
:iconbadlyuninspired:
BadlyUninspired Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2016
Hello I gave it a try!
Piggy
Mask
Reply
:icongasara:
Gasara Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2016  Professional General Artist
Great work!
Reply
:iconbadlyuninspired:
BadlyUninspired Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2016
:)
Reply
:iconmarrie98:
Marrie98 Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2015
Thanks for the tutorial :D
I never thought that it was possible to make pixel art in GIMP xD
this is what I made after I've read your tutorial:  fav.me/d96v009
Reply
:iconkawaiikutie778:
Kawaiikutie778 Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Awesome! I've been trying to transition from Photoshop to GIMP (Didn't want to pay every month for it), and I've been wanting to do pixel art for a while. Thank you, this simplifies it and makes it easy to do!
Reply
:icongallinaceus:
Gallinaceus Featured By Owner Jul 6, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
Very nice! :D
Reply
:icondu-kapitainak:
Du-kapitainak Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
which software do you use?
Reply
:iconbeapanda:
BEAPANDA Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
GIMP! Read Step 2 
Reply
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