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Topic: Anyone interested in color theory? (Read 2542 times) previous topic - next topic

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  • Mooch
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Anyone interested in color theory?
I'm trying to get serious about game development lately. Been actually learning Javascript, Blender, gaming math, electronics and engineering, been practicing drawing, I've always fooled around with tunes and I'm gonna try to properly compose some of 'em, etc.

Since I'm mainly going for a low-bit, low-res look (err, Blender's mainly for fun and education), one thing I'm looking into is color palettes. Limited color palettes, that is, and color theory in general. It's a bogglingly-complex subject (look at the analysis this mere 32-color palette!!) with no real good beginner jumping-in point and a lot of "tutorials" saying "you just have to play around and get a feel for it."

Anytoots, since most of you have actually created proper games, at least Sphere stuff, I'm wondering if anyone's given color theory any serious thought.

I'm currently trying to create some very basic palettes of my own, to use as I learn pixel art, though I'll probably do most of my practice art using the NES palette, since I probably won't design a useable palette until I get decent at pixel art. Maybe I'll post stuff as I progress.

(BTW, one thing I find fun is coming up with color names, THEN choosing colors to fit them, with a theme or genre in mind, like space shooter or fantasy RPG.)

  • Radnen
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  • Senior Staff
  • Wise Warrior
Re: Anyone interested in color theory?
Reply #1
I do pixel art from time to time, but I mainly try to rip colors from other SNES games mostly, I guess it's like a music composer that uses SNES or NES "soundfonts". Otherwise I try to wing it with whatever looks decent, though in practice I have come to realize some things:

1. Do not use black, use purple.
2. Highlights are more red.
3. Shadows are more blue.
4. Never stay in the same hue. (Grasses look better when their colors are in a close range).
5. Never outline a sprite with a solid color, unless you are going for a comic book look.
6. Pillowing is a very bad habit, unless you intend to draw pillows.
7. Dithering is also a bad habit, unless you intend to draw sandpaper.
8. Start with the base outline, the neutral color, and then fill shadow first and highlight last. Sometimes it turns out you don't need as much highlight on an object unless it's glossy or shiny/metallic. It could just look good with only a shadow pass, depending on the mood.
9. Keep the "sun" consistent. I have a bad habit that after several months I tend to draw objects with a slightly different sun. So now I've been trying to keep it to the upper-right at all times.

So, that's some of my wisdom. Otherwise I don't really do color theory, I just practice. I'm very envious of how others use color so dang well. Especially those that can mix seemingly disparate colors into something very nice! There's a lot of eye tricks still left to learn, and patterns for things like cloth, wood, grass, dirt, rock and everything else in between. It's not so much as the color as how you use it.
  • Last Edit: August 01, 2016, 09:47:46 pm by Radnen
If you use code to help you code you can use less code to code. Also, I have approximate knowledge of many things.

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