nekkers's avatar

Furc Port Tips: Pillow Shading

420 21 25K (1 Today)
By nekkers   |   
© 2011 - 2020 nekkers
Geared this towards portraits, but really, it goes for any pixel art. Pillow shading: don't do it!

Hope this helps some of the beginning port artists out there. It's a common mistake that can be fixed with a little knowledge and some practice. :)

:bulletblue: Want more tutorials and tips like this? For every 500 dA points I receive, I'll create and upload a new tutorial. Donate now! :bulletblue:
Image size
900x1398px 133.94 KB
anonymous's avatar
Join the community to add your comment. Already a deviant? Log In
MaudeDraws's avatar
I've noticed some old games tend to have the pillow shading thing going on. Good tutorial.
thisisvendetta's avatar
thisisvendettaHobbyist Writer
I personally think that dithering can be much more attractive, but that each method has its limits. Excellent guide and also, excellent port! I like the dithering on the arm and chest, but the more cell shaded method pretty much everywhere else (especially the hand - wow! what an improvement!)

I think there's a difference between pillow shading and just dithering, since you can dither willy-nilly and still make the light source and volume look better.
Dinocracker's avatar
Great tutorial! Referring to it on here: PumpkinGifts' FAQ.
furrytrash's avatar
furrytrashStudent General Artist
what a lovely piece!
Cyberguy64's avatar
Cyberguy64Student Digital Artist
Hmm... I have someone who keeps complaining that some my sprites are pillow shaded.

Now that I see this, he has a point, I did accidentally a bit of pillow shading on my sprite (Only a little bit, though, and he's still a jerk about it.)

Thanks! Now I know for sure what to avoid in the future!
windowed-dreams's avatar
I learned something new today, thanks! :iconhappyderpplz:
Amunris's avatar
I hope the world of pixel art becomes a little better because of you *bow bow bow* I have been told by so many dither artists that my work is unblended and bad because I don't dither everything. Where as their dithering was all around from dark outside, to light inside. I couldn't grasp the logic in that. It was just mindless color blending, no pointing out where a light source is or anything. Ahhh I'm so glad someone else understands!
Lyssic's avatar
LyssicHobbyist Digital Artist
Oh noes! XD I didn't realize it was that big of a problem haha

Well, it just comes to show everyone learns something new!
danielleclaire's avatar
danielleclaireProfessional Digital Artist
You are fabulous! I just hate dithering so much. I wish folks would take a wee bit of time just learning a little about light sources (and anatomy...) to better their artwork. It makes such a world of difference and most people pick it up so quickly - it's just a matter of trying. :nod:
AngelInTheWoods's avatar
AngelInTheWoodsHobbyist Digital Artist
Actually -- it helps immensely to some degree or another for me. I look at all my old portrait art and see how unhappy I am with it now. Thanks for this! :)
nekkers's avatar
No problem! Glad it's helpful. It's an incredibly common mistake in technique with pixel art that isn't explained often for Furc folks. Once you know about it, it's easier to avoid! :heart:
Dragongirl19's avatar
Dragongirl19Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is quite helpful, and I would love to see more! <3
nekkers's avatar
I'll work on it! :D
Tarracakes's avatar
Tarracakes Digital Artist
Vladicus's avatar
I AGREE, MOAR! Even though I don't shade what I draw... HEHEHE
angryoldgoat's avatar
angryoldgoatHobbyist Digital Artist
I neglect lighting and shading sources, and really should work on fixing that. at the moment about 98% of my ports are unrealistic when it comes to shading (I just slap it on) so maybe this will help.

ty. :>
nekkers's avatar
Hope it helps! One thing I started doing is only using two tones (a dark and a light one) to first block in the shadows. It's helped me focus on keeping a consistent light source, so you might try it if you're having trouble!
Xandrasa's avatar
OMG THE BEST TUTORIAL OF 2011! Saved. Gonna use this sometime. :D
nekkers's avatar
Ha, thanks!! Hope you find it useful. :D
anonymous's avatar
Join the community to add your comment. Already a deviant? Log In