Art Refinement

Art Refinement

Today I want to write a brisk post on the art process and solving problems along the way. I am spearheading a project here at Nebula Interactive, and as it’s rather large in terms of making art assets, I want to make sure all the props are consistent and up to date. Sometimes it involves looking at finished artwork the next morning and see if it holds up – seeing it with fresh eyes, if you will.

One big example is my main character here, Giga. She is meant to be rigged and animated later (ie: a lot of layers and overlaps at the joints) so initially I made sure she wouldn’t look too odd when she’s flying/jumping/running. I wanted to make her limbs and details simple and easy so there’s less of a mess during the animation process. The first image however was created over a month ago (I’d hopped onto creating other art assets) before I came back to it. Having fresher eyes, I wasn’t happy with what I made first time around.

Old vs New


Keeping her limbs flat and simple made her look lopsided and fluidless. The proportions were odd due to the overlapping layers, and body parts were facing the wrong plane. As Giga would be constantly facing to the right of the screen, there would be no instance where her body would rotate during the game. And the colouring seemed flat for a character whose frames wouldn’t need to be redrawn and coloured every time.

I fixed the position of her torso, legs and feet significantly. Giga’s back looks less awkward and stiff, and more upright and curved. The plane of the thigh and knee guards have been rotated slightly and her feet are facing a more comfortable way – as she’ll be flying her feet would dangle. Lastly, the colouring and textures have been greatly enhanced, she looks less like a cut out paper doll and more of a convincing 2D character with some presence.

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