Still on my pixel art trip, I created this out of fridge magnets the other day. Coincidentally, one of the guys at work forwarded this page by SNK Playmore illustrating their methods for pixel art creation, (which they refer to as “Dot Art”.) While I’ve always been a fan of Capcom’s games, I do appreciate that SNK’s character art and animation are superior, with a personal preference for the realistic style of Shinkiro below.

There are instructions as to the various stages of the art creation:

  1. Get the design of the character, usually from the art director, or sometimes Rough Design. One character usually takes about 3 days.
  2. Make a 3d model of the character. This usually takes 2 weeks per character. You also make the ranges of motion, which takes around 2 months/character.
  3. Render out the 3d character. To bake out all the animation for one character usually takes around 2 weeks.
  4. Touch up the render, according to art director’s wishes. This usually takes 1 week per character.
  5. Add in additional stuff like wrinkles, muscle creases, and the like, while maintaining the form. This takes each character around 6 and a half months (!). This is where all the character’s consistency in form is checked.
  6. Adding in gradients. This takes 2 and a half months per character.

Each character usually has around 500 frames of animation, but some are up to 4x that.