How to not suck at pixel art?

   I'm trying to make a spaceship but no matter what I do, It looks ugly. I'm going for top down style game and I don't know how I should shade it so it doesn't looks so cartoony. Any tips? Please do not mock my art  ::)

looks like to me:

face / mask


Like VIrtueeL said, this doesn’t look very “spaceship-y” to me. I don’t think the problem is just shading; the problem is that nothing really jumps out as “spaceship” from the sprite.

Maybe it looks much better when it’s animated (maybe you have some particle effects that come from the rocket part?), but if you’re looking for advice (from a non-artist myself), then I would say that you should maybe try to add more “spaceship stuff” to it- fins, rockets, windows, etc.

Omfg hahahahahahaha, I am dying from that art! And yeah, I can see that it is not really spaceshipy. I am just really bad at art. No matter what shape i make for my space ship , it looks ugly anyways ;D

Well I added some sort of shading to it, it looks sort of better :-X

looks like a really overpowered sword in Terraria XD

It looks actually kinda fine already, just try to make something actually look inconfusibly like a drive, so everybody can see this is supposed to go forward (or whatever direction).

EDIT: Maybe some gondolas or at least something wingy, but maybe also just a little pipe pointing backwards.

I think it looks like a speed boat!

I tried making a planet too ;D

looks good

Like everyone’s saying the art looks fine, BUT it doesn’t stand out as a spaceship.


The silhouette, so when you add thrusters or animate the ship it might look better, but if you start out with a good silhouette then you’ll have much better art to build off of. What I would do is add some visible engines to the back, they don’t have to be big, just noticeable.

Also, add some cloud cover to the planet :D.

Well I took some of you guy’s tips and decided to add some wings and then I realized I have no idea how to make good looking wings.

The wings do actually look good, but what you need is not something more that points forward, but something that also points backward.
Keep those wings and just add some exhausts or whatever to the back. If what you have there are ones, make them a bit more visible, longer.

That looks fine. You should add like a thruster that sticks out from the back, in my opinion. If the wings bother you, you can get those two wings that you just made, copy them and put them farther back and at a wider angle (without taking out the other ones) or invert them and place them at the back as well (also without taking out the other wings). This is just what I would do. Hope my suggestions helped!

Thank you, and also drenius! Double pointed wings is just what I need to make it look more like a ship! And also the exhausts, im going to be working on that now.

Don’t forget to post it again! I want to see the results :wink:

How to not suck at pixel art:

[OPTIONAL] Step 0: Have some natural ability.
Step 1: Practice.
Step 2: Repeat step 1.

Well, this is the horrid result :emo: I think I just need to make the back wing much longer.

Looks actually pretty good, maybe make the color borders a little bit less jagged…