My pixel outline. You can download it here.
My color chart. Right click on it and save to your computer.
My image is just a guide. Feel free to change the colors, apply cutouts or not, or add other effects to your liking. I put everything on its own layer (and name each one). That way you can easily go back and change colors later and correct any mistakes you've made. It makes a lot of layers, but it also keeps things organized and will save you a lot of heartache.
It makes things easier if you enlarge your graphic (use your magnifier tool) so you can see the pixels clearly. Feel free to save my images in this tut too, and enlarge them as necessary.
The basic procedure for each piece will be the same. You'll add a new layer. Set your brush size to 1 and paint the outline of the piece in a darker color and then paint the inside in a lighter color (Hint: to do the inside coloring, make the outline layer active, choose your magic wand and click inside the section you want to color - then apply the color on your new layer).
I've applied a cutout to some pieces, usually using the same color as its outline color. To apply the cutout, select and float the selection (selections>select all>selections>float). You'll see the marquee ("marching ants") around the selection. Apply a cutout (effects>3d effects>cutout), using the settings in the screenshot (the shadow color will change for each selection). For some items, I repeated the cutout, changing the horizontal and vertical to -1 instead. Just play with the settings, it's a bit of a personal preference.
[Hint: When you're going to add a cutout, set your foreground or background color to the shadow color you're going to use. Then, when you apply your cutout, just right click on the shadow color box and choose the color from the recent colors displayed there.]
Step 1. Open up the pixel outline you downloaded. There are two layers - a background and the outline layer.
Open up the color chart you saved. Copy and paste it as a new layer onto your image. Move it to the top, out of the way. When you need a color, just click on it with your dropper tool.
Step 2. I'll show you the colors I used for each section of the graphic - feel free to change these as you wish.
Step 4.Add a new layer. Set foreground to color #13. Choose your airbrush, using settings in the screenshot, and spray a little color on the cheeks.
Choose your smudge brush, using settings in the screenshot, and soften the colors out a bit.
Step 5. I added text to mine, but that's optional. To do so, just add a new layer. Set foreground and background to colors of your choice (I've used colors 1 and 8). Choose a font of your choice (I'm using 2 Peas Wild Child). Type text of your choice.
When you're satisfied with your image, delete the color chart, outline, and background layers. Merge visible layers and save in whatever format you prefer (I always save mine in PSP format).
And that's it, a little Valentine's Day pup, full of love.
Screenshots of programs used in this tutorial are copyrighted to their respective authors.
This tutorial was created on February 2, 2006.
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