The New Vexel Definition

9 min read
jussta's avatar
By jussta
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1. Vexels- what are they?



Vexels are layered raster shapes of solid colour or gradients/ solid shapes/ raster shapes with look of vector.

The word 'vexel' is a mix of words 'vector' and 'pixel'.


2. The difference between vexels and vectors



The most important difference is that vexels are created using raster layers while vectors are created using vector layers.

Rasters are based on pixels (little squares) and each square is given a fixed colour. When you expand it you can see pixelation.
Shapes created using vector layers while expanding stay crisp and don't lose their quality.

Let me explain the difference on this example.

Three by jussta

The image above is a vector. When expanding it to 300% it will still stay sharp:

work 300_1 by jussta

If the same image was created on raster layers it would look blurry after expanding to 300%:

work 300_2 by jussta


3. What is allowed and what's not when creating vexel art



:bulletpink: vector layers are allowed in the creation as long as they are rasterized before saving the final JPG/PNG
:bulletpink: no airbrushing or painting to blend is allowed
:bulletpink: glows used to cheat blending, as opposed to using several layers or gradients, are not allowed
:bulletpink: brushes allowed only if you are using the stroke path method
:bulletpink: soft, feathered or photo brushes are not allowed
:bulletpink: photos overlayed over your finished vexel (or behind it) are not allowed
:bulletpink: photo textures, filters and layer styles (drop/inner shadows, inner/outer glows, bevels, satin etc.) are not allowed. The exceptions are gradient/colour overlays, stroke and patterns created using the pen tool or lasso tool
:bulletpink: photo backgrounds are not allowed
:bulletpink: no gradient mesh as this is not created using layered shapes


4. Tutorials



:thumb38531790: Vexelling Hair by Ilaria84 Vexel Tutorial - Hair by VAngelLJ Hair tutorial by jussta Photoshop Vexel Demo by Darkdesyre Vector Vexel Portrait Theory 1 by ChewedKandi Vector Vexel Portrait Theory 2 by ChewedKandi Vector Vexel Portrait Theory 3 by ChewedKandi


5. Features



Boys of Summer... by ChewedKandi

Mature Content

silhouette by p00pstr34ks
peacock by e-gart super fine by haaru Camelilly by davidnanchin RAUH-Welt Porsche 911 by Aesthari Tree Sunset by sinrevelar Dreaming of Revelry by Sewwy Honey, I ate the cupcakes.. by womanwithagun City in a Snowglobe by shebid


6. Links



Is your piece a vector, vexel or mixed media?
Getting into vexelling and vectoring
The difference between Vector and Vexel Art
GIMP- a free program for creating vexels



Thank you to all who helped me with this :heart:
Published:
© 2010 - 2020 jussta
Comments140
anonymous's avatar
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StephLS's avatar
StephLSHobbyist Artisan Crafter
This is all still very confusing to me. I've used Illustrator's pen tool to make vectors for a long time but now that I'm using Photoshop I don't know what  to submit under. Is work made soley using the paintbrush tool on raster layers (with or w/o filters: ex. harden, soften, darken) vexels or something else entirely???
jussta's avatar
jusstaProfessional Digital Artist
As for using paintbrush- it's not allowed in vexels. On the other  hand  if you'd used pen tool to create a path and THEN used option 'stroke path' with a paintbrush- it's ok :)
StephLS's avatar
StephLSHobbyist Artisan Crafter
Ok that clears it up for me. Now to go recategorized a few pieces lol. Thnx :D
Tigresuave11's avatar
Tigresuave11Hobbyist General Artist
You cant use tools found in vector programs like glows but you can trace a photo (as seen in several of the examples)? Seems a bit weird to exclude one and not the other.
jussta's avatar
jusstaProfessional Digital Artist
Painting over with various brushes is also called tracing but you still would rather call it a painting not a vexel, right?
AniPal's avatar
AniPalProfessional Interface Designer
illustrator would go 6400 % and it wont spoil it yet
jussta's avatar
jusstaProfessional Digital Artist
I'm aware of that but not everyone has Illustrator
AniPal's avatar
AniPalProfessional Interface Designer
true
Emberguard's avatar
Emberguard General Artist
"The most important difference is that vexels are created using raster layers while vectors are created using vector layers."

But I only have normal layers? :confused:

How do I tell what a vexel/vector layer is?
Nanahuatli's avatar
NanahuatliHobbyist General Artist
Every tutorial of those suggests several others, so now I'm dizzy. XD But I was curious about vexel and now I know what it's about and how to start with it, thank you!
icefire8521's avatar
icefire8521Hobbyist General Artist
Is there a way of creating vexels without using the pen tool?
jussta's avatar
jusstaProfessional Digital Artist
sure, you can use lasso tool :)
Charlene-Art's avatar
Charlene-ArtHobbyist General Artist
I'm still a bit confused about Vexels compared to Vectors.

What I usually do with my vector pieces usually made using the pen tool for blocking strokes and shapes is that I save it as a JPG and upload it to the site. Is this now a vexel or still a vector?

From what I've seen of tutorials so far it seems that Vexels tend to be made in Photoshop whereas Vectors tend to be made in Illustrator. Can you make a vexel in Illustrator?
jussta's avatar
jusstaProfessional Digital Artist
If you made your work in a vector program using vector tools then saving it as a jpg does not change it to vexel, since you haven't used any pixel layers.

As for your second question- I don't work in AI so I'm not sure of it's capabilities. You can ask `ChewedKandi though, she's a master of Illustrator ;)
Charlene-Art's avatar
Charlene-ArtHobbyist General Artist
Ah ok then. I think I've got a fair definition of the two now - been reading around a bit.
2by3Artist's avatar
2by3ArtistHobbyist General Artist
I had so much to ask/say, I didn't want to bore anyone or physically monopolize the page. So, I'm sending you a note. Thanks so much.
CherryFactory's avatar
Hi, thanks for the explanation.

I have a question though, vexels are basically vectors done with raster layers. And you can't "cheat" either, so my question: why would someone prefer do vexel art that will get pixelated, instead of a vector that will look exactly the same but has the advantage of being a vector?
jussta's avatar
jusstaProfessional Digital Artist
personally I preffer vexel when it comes to making hair, stroke path method is just perfect for that and so far I can't get the same look with vectors
Phoenix-61's avatar
Phoenix-61Student General Artist
Why are you not able to get the same effect with vectors? Because when enlarged it won't give effect?
Vector and vexel seem very similar, but what you are saying is that to have a vexel, it will remain that shape-object and you will create new layers of those as you add new colours/shapes?

Thank you in advance :)
normanestuista's avatar
normanestuistaStudent Digital Artist
what tool we are using when we are creating vexels?
jussta's avatar
jusstaProfessional Digital Artist
mostly pen tool
normanestuista's avatar
normanestuistaStudent Digital Artist
pen tool? ahm.. i cant hardly understand dude.. i am creating vector art and designs but what is it the vexel difer from vector?
peewee45's avatar
peewee45Hobbyist Writer
Can I enter my poem?
anonymous's avatar
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