“An alluring rawness and freedom in it’s simplicity”

An interesting short documentary about the origins of pixel art and how it’s relevant to today’s artists and gamers.

The documentary by Simon Cottee references “Understanding Comics” by Scott McCloud.

“Perhaps you’ve experienced this before: You feel a connection with a simple cartoony character, such as Charlie Brown, but not a realistic character like Prince Valiant. Why is this? According to Scott McCloud, this is because the mental picture we have of ourselves is simple and basic (Understanding Comics Page 36). Therefore, we are able to project ourselves into the simple character but not the complex one.

This is a valuable lesson because it deals with the important need to make your characters relatable. If you want your audience to feel like they are the main character, make sure the character isn’t overly elaborate and detailed. Leave the interesting specific details for the colorful secondary characters.”

The narrator references pointillism, minimalism and abstraction in painting, which is interesting because I’ve never heard anybody else make those connections. He says that pixels were at the birth of digital art and are the rawest building blocks of all modern digital art, being equivelnt of the hammer and chisel to stone carving or the pencil to drawing.

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