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Encyclopedia > Pixel art
This monster ("The Gunk") is an example of pixel art drawn using Microsoft Paint.
This monster ("The Gunk") is an example of pixel art drawn using Microsoft Paint.

Pixel art is a form of digital art, created through the use of raster graphics software, where images are edited on the pixel level. Graphics in most old (or relatively limited) computer and video games, graphing calculator games, and many mobile phone games are mostly pixel art. Image File history File links The_Gunk. ... Paint (formerly Paintbrush for Windows) is a simple graphics painting program that has been included with almost all versions of Microsoft Windows since its first release. ... Computer-generated image created by Gilles Tran using POV-Ray 3. ... Imagine the smiley face in the top left corner as an RGB bitmap image. ... Computer software (or simply software) refers to one or more computer programs and data held in the storage of a computer for some purpose. ... This article is about the picture element. ... A typical graphing calculator. ...

Contents

History

The term pixel art was first published by Adele Goldberg and Robert Flegal of Xerox Palo Alto Research Center in 1982.[1] The concept, however, goes back about 10 years before that, for example in Richard Shoup's SuperPaint system in 1972, also at Xerox PARC. SuperPaint was a pioneering graphics program and framebuffer computer system developed by Richard Shoup at Xerox PARC. The system was first conceptualized in late 1972 and produced its first stable image in April 1973. ...


Some traditional art forms, such as cross-stitch, mosaic and beadwork, bear some similarity to pixel art by constructing pictures out of small colored units analogous to the pixels of modern digital computing. A sample cross-stitch of a Welsh dresser Cross-stitch is a popular form of counted-thread embroidery in which X-shaped stitches are used to form a picture. ... This article is about a decorative art. ... Beadwork is the art or craft of attaching beads to one another or to cloth using a needle and thread. ...


Definition

Pixel art is distinguished from other forms of digital art by an insistence upon manual, pixel-level editing of an image (without the application of image filters, automatic anti-aliasing or special rendering modes), often at close magnification. In this form, it is commonly said that "each pixel was placed carefully" to achieve a desired result.[citation needed] In digital signal processing, anti-aliasing is the technique of minimizing the distortion artifacts known as aliasing when representing a high-resolution signal at a lower resolution. ...


Purists within the pixel art scene hold that "true" pixel art should only be created from tools that place individual pixels (such as the 'pencil' tool), and that pixel artists should avoid all other tools including line, Bezier curve, circle and rectangle. Others counter that tools such as line and bucket-fill are acceptable as their functions could be just as easily, if not as quickly, replicated on an individual pixel basis.[citation needed]


Because of this rule, image filters (such as blurring or alpha-blending) or tools with automatic anti-aliasing are considered not valid tools for pixel art, as such tools calculate new pixel values automatically, contrasting against the precise manual arrangement of pixels that is associated with pixel art.


Techniques

See also: Spriting

Drawings usually start with what is called the line art, which is the basic line that defines the character, building or anything else the artist is intending to draw. Linearts are usually traced over scanned drawings and are often shared among other pixel artists. Other techniques, some resembling painting, also exist. An example of a sprite. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Line Art. ... In computing, a scanner is a device that analyzes images, printed text, or handwriting, or an object (such as an ornament) and converts it to a digital image. ... For other uses , see Painting (disambiguation). ...


The limited palette often implemented into Pixel Art usually promotes the use of dithering in order to achieve different shades and colors, but due to the nature of this form of art this is done completely by hand. Hand-made anti-aliasing is also used. This article or section should be merged with Dither An illustration of dithering. ... In digital signal processing, anti-aliasing is the technique of minimizing the distortion artifacts known as aliasing when representing a high-resolution signal at a lower resolution. ...


Here are a few parts of the above image of “The Gunk” in detail, depicting a few of the techniques involved:

1. The basic form of dithering, using two colors in a 2×2 checkerboard pattern. Changing the density of each color will lead to different subtones. Image File history File links The_Gunk_details. ...


2. Stylized dithering with 2×2 pixel squares randomly scattered can produce interesting textures. Small circles are also frequent.


3. Anti-aliasing can be done, by hand, to smooth curves and transitions. Some artists only do this internally in order to keep crisp outlines that can go over any background. The PNG alpha channel can be used to create external anti-aliasing for any background.
PNG (Portable Network Graphics), sometimes pronounced as ping, is a relatively new bitmap image format that is becoming popular on the World Wide Web and elsewhere. ... In computer graphics, alpha compositing is often useful to render image elements in separate passes, and then combine the resulting multiple 2D images into a single, final image in a process called compositing. ...


Saving and compression

Pixel art is preferably stored in a file format utilizing lossless data compression, so that each pixel can be stored and retrieved with exact precision. If memory or computational power is limited, Run-length encoding is another option, and converting an image to a limited color space, such as an indexed color palette is also very efficient. Lossless data compression is a class of data compression algorithms that allows the exact original data to be reconstructed from the compressed data. ... RAM redirects here. ... CPU redirects here. ... Run-length encoding (RLE) is a very simple form of data compression in which runs of data (that is, sequences in which the same data value occurs in many consecutive data elements) are stored as a single data value and count, rather than as the original run. ... A palette, in computer graphics, is a designated subset of the total range of colors supported by a computer graphics system. ...


GIF and PNG are two file formats commonly used for saving pixel art. Saving pixel art in JPEG format can be detrimental to the work (due to the JPEG's lossy compression algorithm and chroma subsampling). BMP is also avoided, due to its lack of image compression and poor cross-platform support. GIF redirects here. ... PNG (Portable Network Graphics), sometimes pronounced as ping, is a relatively new bitmap image format that is becoming popular on the World Wide Web and elsewhere. ... JPG redirects here. ... Original Image (lossless PNG, 60. ... In digital image processing, chroma subsampling is the use of lower resolution for the colour (chroma) information in an image than for the brightness (intensity or luma) information. ... The BMP file format, sometimes called bitmap or DIB file format (for device-independent bitmap), is an image file format used to store bitmap digital images, especially on Microsoft Windows and OS/2 operating systems. ...

GIF file (318 bytes)
GIF file (318 bytes)
PNG file (254 bytes)
PNG file (254 bytes)
JPEG file (706 bytes)
JPEG file (706 bytes)
Magnified JPEG to show artifacts
Magnified JPEG to show artifacts

Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Image File history File links Png_pixel_cube. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ...

Categories

Isometric
Isometric
Non-isometric
Non-isometric

Pixel art is commonly divided in two subcategories: isometric and non-isometric. The isometric kind is drawn in a near-isometric dimetric projection. This is commonly seen in games to provide a three-dimensional view without using any real three-dimensional processing. Technically, an isometric angle would be of 30 degrees from the horizontal, but this is avoided since the pixels created by a line drawing algorithm would not follow a neat pattern. To fix this, lines with a 1:2 pixel ratio are picked, leading to an angle of, approximately, 26.565 degrees (arctan 0.5). A TV in Pixel Art - Isometric version I drew this on Microsoft Paint along with Image:Pixelart-tv-niso. ... A TV in Pixel Art - Non-isometric version I drew this on Microsoft Paint along with Image:Pixelart-tv-iso. ... An isometric drawing of a cube. ... Example of a dimetric axonometric drawing from a US Patent (1874) Dimetric projection is a form of axonometric projection, in which its direction of viewing is such that two of the three axes of space appear equally foreshortened, of which the attendant scale and angles of presentation are determined according... 2-dimensional renderings (ie. ... This article is about process of creating 3D computer graphics. ... This article describes the unit of angle. ... A line drawing algorithm is a graphical algorithm for approximating a line segment on discrete graphical media. ... In mathematics, the trigonometric functions are functions of an angle, important when studying triangles and modeling periodic phenomena. ...


Non-isometric pixel art is any pixel art that does not fall in the isometric category, such as views from the top, side, front, bottom or perspective views. These are also called Planometric views. A cube in two-point perspective. ...


Scaling

Main article: Pixel art scaling algorithms
2x zoom interpolated using the 2xSaI algorithm
2x zoom interpolated using the 2xSaI algorithm

When pixel art is displayed at a higher resolution than the source image, it is often scaled using the nearest neighbor interpolation algorithm in order to avoid the blurring caused by other algorithms such as bilinear and bicubic interpolation – which interpolate between adjacent pixels and works best on continuous tones, but not sharp edges or lines; nearest-neighbour interpolation preserves these sharp edges, but it makes diagonal lines and curves look blocky. Thus, hybrid algorithms have been devised to interpolate between continuous tones while preserving the sharpness of lines in the piece; such attempts include the 2xSaI and Super Eagle algorithms. ‹ The template below (Expand) is being considered for deletion. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... In computer graphics, image scaling is the process of resizing a digital image. ... The introduction to this article provides insufficient context for those unfamiliar with the subject matter. ... Flowcharts are often used to graphically represent algorithms. ... A zoomed small portion of a bitmap of a cat, using nearest neighbor filtering (left) and bicubic filtering (right). ... In numerical analysis, a branch of mathematics, bicubic interpolation is one of the most common interpolation methods in two dimensions. ... 2xSaI is a digital image processing algorithm for computer graphics. ... Several image scaling algorithms are specifically designed to enlarge low-resolution pixel and line art that contains thin lines, solid areas of colour rather than gradient fills or shading, and has not been anti-aliased. ...


Uses

Pixel art was very often used in older computer and video console games. With the increasing use of 3D graphics in games, pixel art lost some of its use. Despite that, this is still a very active professional/amateur area, since mobile phones and other portable devices still have low resolution and then require a skillful use of space and memory. Sometimes pixel art is used for advertising too. One such company that uses pixel art to advertise is Bell. The group eboy specializes in pixel graphics for advertising and has been featured in magazines such as Wired, Popular Science, and Fortune 500. This article is about the machine. ... Game console redirects here. ... This article is about process of creating 3D computer graphics. ... Bell Canada Enterprises (TSX: BCE, NYSE: BCE), legally BCE Inc. ... eBoy (Godfathers of Pixel) is a pixel art group founded in 1998 by Steffen Sauerteig, Svend Smital, Kai Vermehr. ... Wired is a full-color monthly American magazine and on-line periodical published in San Francisco, California since March 1993. ... This article is not about the magazine, Popular Science Popular science is interpretation of science intended for a general audience, rather than for other scientists or students. ... The Fortune 500 is a ranking of the top 500 United States corporations as measured by gross revenue. ...


Icons for operating systems with limited graphics abilities are also pixel art. The limited number of colors and resolution presents a challenge when attempting to convey complicated concepts and ideas in an efficient way. On the Microsoft Windows desktop icons are raster images of various sizes, the smaller of which are not necessarily direct scalings of the larger ones and could be considered pixel art. On the GNOME and KDE desktops, icons are represented primarily by SVG images, but with hand-optimised, pixel art PNGs for smaller sizes such as 16x16 and 24x24. Another use of pixel art on modern desktop computers is favicons. Nuvola icons for KDE are available as PNG images, which come in six sizes, and SVG images, which are scalable On computer displays, a computer icon is a small pictogram. ... An operating system (OS) is a software that manages computer resources and provides programmers with an interface used to access those resources. ... Windows redirects here. ... This article is about the mythical creature. ... For the NYSE stock ticker symbol KDE, see 4Kids Entertainment. ... SVG redirects here. ... PNG (Portable Network Graphics), sometimes pronounced as ping, is a relatively new bitmap image format that is becoming popular on the World Wide Web and elsewhere. ... In Mozilla Firefox, favicons are displayed in all available tabs, the bookmark toolbar/menu and the location bar. ...


Modern pixel art has been seen as a reaction to the 3D graphics industry by amateur game/graphic hobbyists. Many retro enthusiasts often choose to mimic the style of the past. Some view the pixel art revival as restoring the golden age of second and third generation consoles, where it is argued graphics were more aesthetically pleasing. Pixel art still remains popular and has been used in the virtual world Citypixel as well among handheld devices such as the Nintendo DS and Cellphones. The Nintendo DS (sometimes abbreviated NDS or more commonly DS) is a handheld game console developed and manufactured by Nintendo. ...


See also

Dollz, Cartoon Dolls or Pixel Dolls are small pixelated images, generally of people. ... The original Avengers (l to r - Thor, Iron Man, Captain America, the Wasp and Giant-Man) made on the Jack Kirby Micro-heroes template by Robert Bradley. ... An example of a sprite. ... Welcome screen dialog Deluxe Paint (DPaint) is a bitmap graphics editor originally created by Dan Silva for Electronic Arts (EA). ... This article is about the family of home computers. ... The demoscene is a computer art subculture that specializes itself on producing demos, non-interactive audio-visual presentations, which are run real-time on a computer. ... Paint (formerly Paintbrush for Windows) is a simple graphics painting program that has been included with almost all versions of Microsoft Windows since its first release. ... Imagine the smiley face in the top left corner as an RGB bitmap image. ... Windows redirects here. ...

References

  1. ^ Adele Goldberg and Robert Flegal, "ACM president's letter: Pixel Art", Communications of the ACM, Vol. 25, Issue 12, Dec. 1982.

  Results from FactBites:
 
Pixel Art at pixeljoint.com - Forum Avatars, Buddy Icons, Sprites (773 words)
Pixel Joint is a community dedicated to the pixel art style.
If you are a pixel artist or just a pixel art fan it's worth registering so you can add comments, save favorites, rate pixel art, send private messages and submit your lovely pixel art creations.
All pixel art copyrights are retained by the respective pixel artists.
Pixel Art - Wikipixel (1209 words)
Pixel art is art created on the computer through the use of raster graphics software that allows images to be edited on the pixel level.
Pixel art should not be saved as JPEG files because the lossy compression of the format cannot handle the details involved in pixel art.
Several pixel art virtual communitycommunities exist on the internet where artists share their art and techniques, as well as giving out hints, tips, tricks and etc. There is usually a request to keep the comments and critics as constructive as possible in order to help the community and their members to improve.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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