I’m a programmer.

I think I’m a pretty good one, too.

I’m also a pretty independent person, and I enjoy learning skills that allow me to be more self-reliant (like programming). As a game developer, so far I’ve used a number of tactics to cover my lack of artistic ability:

  • Designing games to make use of the vast wealth of free game art on the Internet (thanks especially to Lost Garden)
  • Having my friends make endearingly terrible game art
  • Making my own (endearingly?) terrible game art
  • Designing games to make use of finite sets of quality commercially licensed game art (specifically from Oryx Design Lab)
  • Taking the opportunity to work with a fantastic digital artist I met in school (Thanks again Quincy!)
  • Never even trying to make a 3D game

Of the above tactics, I vastly preferred working with a talented artist on a project designed to make special use of her abilities (The Whisperer in Darkness). However, since that project, I haven’t been able to find any other artists willing to team up. I’d really love to be able to make my own game art, in order to better express my personal aesthetic vision for games, and to be able to work on projects by myself whenever I need or want to.

To that end, I’ve decided to start scheduling time every week to create one small piece of pixel art. These pieces will be terrible, at first, but I expect to see gradual improvement in my visual art skills throughout the next year. (I have no idea when I’ll decide to stop this experiment.)

My tools (at least for now) will be:

  • A Bamboo pen tablet my brother generously left behind when he went to college
  • PyxelEdit (run on Linux through WINE)
  • Scrot and MEncoder to stitch together time lapse videos of my drawing

I’ll be posting my finished art pieces on Twitter and my site every week, and starting next week I’ll be uploading time lapse videos of the creation of these pieces to YouTube.

Finally, I present to you my first weekly pixel study. It’s based on a photo I took of part of my neighbor’s lawn.