Pracken's Paint Shop Pro Tutorials

Christmas 2010:
A Retro Christmas (pixel)

Trees and Plants

This is my retro Christmas series. I haven't had much time or energy during most of the year to create, but did want to get some tuts up for Christmas. You'll find all the other tutorials in this series here.

This tutorial is for all the trees and plants you see pictured above.


For this tutorial, you will need the following:

Paint Shop Pro. This tutorial was written for versions 10 (PSP X) and 9. However, you should have no problems doing the tut in other versions as well. You can download the latest PSP version demo here.

My canvas with the pixel outline. You may download it here.

My color chart. Right click on it and save to your computer.


First, a few notes.....

My image is just a guide. Feel free to change the colors, 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, especially with an image that has as many pixels as this one.

It makes it 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 to see.

The basic procedure for each piece will be the same. You'll add a new layer. Choose your paintbrush tool and set the size to 1 and paint the outline of the piece and then paint the inside, along with any shading. (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 - just remember to make that layer active before you do so).

Step 1. Open up the pixel outline you downloaded. There are 11 layers - a background layer, and 10 layers of trees and plants. Make the outline you're working with visible and turn the others off until you need them. Add each layer of work on top of your 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.

I'll show you the colors I used for each section of the graphic - feel free to change these as you wish.

Tree 1

  • Entire tree - color 1
  • You can make a white tree by painting it white and adding a drop shadow so you can see it.


    Tree 2

    • Outside - 2; inside - 2, 3, 4
    • Trunk outside - 27, inside -28


    Tree 3

    • Ouside - 2; inside - 5, 6
    • Trunk outisde - 27, inside - 28
    I made a second variation of this tree by just adding some lights. Just draw on with your paintbrush, set to size 1, of course.


    Tree 4

    • Outside - 7; inside - 8, 9, 20
    You can make variations by painting on lights, snow, etc.


    Tree 5

    • Outside - 8, inside- 9, 10
    • Variation - use same colors except paint stars on your tree using colors 14, 15


    Tree 6

    • Outside - 7; inside - 11, 12
    • Trunk outside - 27, inside - 28


    Tree 7

    • Tree outline - 13, inside - white
    • Star outline - 14, inside - 15
    I made several variations of this tree. One I left white and just added red and blue bulbs. I make two green ones with lights as well.


    Bush 1

    • String - 28; Bottom outline 27, inside - 28
    • Plant - 17, 18, 19
    The bushes are done with the same colors as the single plant.


    Bush 2

    • Vase outside - 20; inside - 21, 22
    • Plant - 23, 24, 25, 26


    Step 2. Now take a look at your image and tweak anything you'd like to at this point. I always save all of my images with all layers intact, as a master file, in psp format (that way I can always go back later and change things around if I want to), so go ahead and save yours now if you wish. Then, save each of your trees in psp format.

    Now, continue working through this series of tutorials and have fun!


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    This tutorial was created on November 3, 2010.
    All content, graphics, and tutorials on this site are
    ŠPracken, 2003-2012