Teaching a friend how to draw sprites for his game

My friend was recently inspired by an indie game he played. He decided to develop his own game using the same program as the creator of the game Dhux’s Scar. While he isn’t a total beginner at game designing, he is pretty much clueless when it comes to sprite creation and drawing backgrounds. I decided to help him out by teaching him some of the basics of layer art and opacity for sprites. However, it turns out I myself had problems with it too even though I had background knowledge in this area. The programs I used all exported in 32bit. The program he was using only accepted 8bit files so I had to convert those files to 8bit. I found a file converter online which allowed quick and free conversion. I was unsure at first but when the files were tested, they were all able to be placed in the database. After that issue was dealt with, he told me that he wanted to create his own background images for cutscenes and other parts of his game. As of now, he’s currently working on outlining and coloring. When I was watching him do this, I was reminded of the times when I first started digital drawings a few years back since he was making the same mistakes I was doing. When he made a mistake that was too difficult to undo, I somewhat laughed since it was a good lesson for him to make backups. I helped him fix it as much as possible afterwards. His art isn’t even worth putting up now, but he is committed to getting better.

One thought on “Teaching a friend how to draw sprites for his game”

  1. Sounds like you’re being the good friend by helping out with basics. I’d love to see some of your work too.

    You mentioned how your friends work isn’t worth putting up right now, which I understand. As finished work, the sprites probably are not where your friend wants them to be. But as artifacts of a process and documenting it can be really valuable. Just by putting up the pieces which illustrate a mistake and putting them in context with writing becomes something potentially of value. The creator has something to look back at when confronting the practice again (especially if too much time passes between efforts). And to the public (if posted online) there’s a chance for other audiences to learn in ways you suggest in the post. Also there’s the potential for community commiserating and advising as everyone learns.

    And finally if one is a regular at documenting this practice, well then there’s a really great history built of one’s practice which can be valued in many, many ways. Especially when one can see the progression in the work’s quality.

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