As our community grows, so does the daily ammount of incredible work created with Gravit Designer, varying from UI projects to logos, character design and illustrations. So here we are, once again, to proudly feature some of the designs that our talented users shared with us on our social media channels.
Anthony Bennis (aka “Corporate Pixels”)
During the day, I work as a Product Owner for a number of software projects. From a graphical point of view that includes responsibilities for rolling out Corporate Branding within our applications and defining look and feel for our various platforms.
This is my online identity “brand”. The name is a result of running out of options when registering the web address. I wanted an online id separate from my personal name and this is as good as any.
I’ll walk through my process in creating the image above of a frog (maybe a toad?) sitting on a rock. The image itself is a straight forward front facing character, but it was created using a few techniques I’ve picked up using Gravit Designer over the last few months, that I’d like to share here.
Step 1: Composition
I start by blocking out the composition of the image, outlining the main shapes and their relationship to each other (casting shade etc). I’ll also consider the light source at this point. Usually sun or moon light so top down, from an angle but I like to change this for more interesting images.
Reference images help with proportions but also for inspiration from different styles. I ignored real world photographs of frogs for this image as I already had an idea in my head, basically of a frog with “Cookie Monster” eyes (which I ended up not liking and went for more traditional cartoon eyes). I had no idea how the legs would work at this point, but I knew I wanted long toes with balls at the ends. I really must look at a real frog some day, as my entire knowledge of their anatomy is from cartoons.
Step 2: Define colour palette
Rather than use the swatches feature of Gravit, I create a layer and place a half dozen shapes there, with the colours I need. I find this workflow a little faster when selecting colours.
When defining the palette, one “trick” I guess you could call it, is to get a photo with colours I like, zoom in on an area of a single colour until the pixels are really large and then use the dropper to pick colours of pixels near each other. Usually you get a nice complementary range of shades this way.
I’ve always had an interest in digital art since an early age, but what motivates me today is seeing what artists on the various social media platforms have created. After watching a YouTube clip from “Gigantic” (Marko Radunović) is usually enough to motivate me to turn on the laptop and start drawing.
Above is an image I created which was inspired by the style of Marko Radunović , an artist from Montenegro. Mimicking the style of others gives an insight into their techniques.
Step 4 Colour and Shading
This is the fun part. Gravit Designer has a number of handy tools to make the whole process fast and easy. The inner shadow tool is useful for both shadow and highlights.
For example, on the rock, I have both a dark inner shadow for the dark side of the rock, and a light “moon light reflecting” highlight on the top left side.
I like to add 1950’s cartoon type eyelid shine to my characters. This is easily achieved by creating a shine shape and cliping it against the eyelid shape. Then, apply a transparency of around 25% to get the shiny frog eyelids below:
This frog image contains three effects: “Outer Glow” for the moon, “Mirror” for the rock and land and “Inner Shadow” almost everywhere. My aim is to use these subtly, eventually hoping to master them enough to achieve a “classic Disney” style painting style.
What I love about Gravit Designer
I’ve used several vector based illustration tools over the years, starting with Inkscape (functional but the user interface is just not fun), and most recently Affinity Designer (powerful but lacks Linux support).
I’ve been using Gravit Designer pretty much for the last six months. The tool has all the features I need for now, and the fact it’s multiplatform with cloud support means I can work on a very ad hoc basis. I generally don’t have time to spend hours at once sitting on an illustration, so will often start and stop with short bursts of productivity every second day.
But the main draw is it’s usability. I think I’ve had to Google for a solution to a workflow once when using the tool. It’s crazy intuitive. In my day job, I’ve been designing software user interfaces for years, and these guys have got it right. They really understand the common workflows and have created a balance between providing options to the user, and just doing the right thing at the right time.
Founder of Dream Fighters.bn, I mostly do the managing, pre-production and post-production tasks.
I am currently a student, taking my Bachelor in Multimedia Technology. I have started creating video productions when I was a kid, and had an interest in opening a company based on that, thus I have opened Dream Fighters.bn at Brunei, specializing in film, designing and animation.
Project: Pixel Art Tech Ninja
This project was a client’s request as they are just starting up a small indie game development team. They have asked to design a certain type of character and scenario, based on their scenario, I have come up with this design using Gravit Designer.
By opening Gravit Designer software, you are greeted with a welcome page, which was very useful for any beginners (like me) who are just starting to do vector designing. There are tons of preset canvas to choose from, and it’s surprisingly simple.
From that, I have decided to select Instagram Post preset canvas. Press “CREATE!” once you’re satisfied.
A canvas opens, ready to be used. Let’s get started: on your right, there are a few options which Gravit initially put there for a purpose, to customize or set your canvas properties. I find that very useful, puts you to a habit to always set it right before doing anything else.
Since I am creating a pixel art with boxy vectors, setting a grid is essential. In this case I set it to 60 x 60 to get that nice fit with the canvas size.
Now the fun begins, I will be making the background first which is obviously simple, grey and square as it’s canvas, then the head next with it’s visor eyes. Once I’m done with it, I will group them and lock it in place by using the layers tab option on the left side of the window.
So I did the same thing with it’s body. There is something I want to point out as well, the thing about Gravit is that whatever previous color you chose, it will be displayed on the color selection under “IN USE”. As you can see on the right side, all the colors that have been used are there.
Continue on with the same step, moving, shifting and coloring the squares, you will get something like this as shown below.
With the character done, its time to create the scene. I have grouped all the layers into one and named it “tech ninja”. This way I can easily resize it without causing any janky size distortion on the different layers.
First, for the scene, we will make the road. Just add rectangles and color them. Simple enough for a begginger.
Continue making a tower with more square shapes, clouds, a moon and stars. The special colors on the moon and the windows of the towers have gradient fills, which you can find on the color picker option as shown below.
Final step would be making some final touches. I have decided to put gradient fill to the background, some vignette and blur on the buildings.
What I love about working in Gravit Designer:
This was not the first design I have done in Gravit Designer. I did something similar but in an Isometric view. Guess what, you don’t need to create an isometric grid in Gravit Designer BECAUSE it has a toggle button for it with the grid settings. HOW COOL IS THAT. Other than that, Gravit Designer is just so unique; it’s like a teacher, but without tutoring you really. But hey, I learned to use Gravit Designer so easily that I was surprised I created something without any problem understanding the functions and tools. Every tool, property and option is placed how it should be. Last, what’s special about it is that it’s very light, in other words, from installing, opening the app towards the end of every process to exporting and exiting. Its like Thanos snapping his finger but without vaporizing your art. LOL. I have so many more good things to say about Gravit Designer, gosh, that would take forever.
There are few improvements, though, that I would like to see in Gravit in the next updates:
- Options for Keyboard shortcuts and mapping
- Some more optimisations
- Swatch generator
Lastly I would like to say THANK YOU to the Gravit team for making such an amazing software for beginners and small companies to experience this designer tool. It is just so versatile and adaptive.
Just a glimpse …
That’s not all yet. People have created countless more designs recently. Beware, there’s a boatload of images ahead …
Do you want to be a part of our next instalment in this series? Shoot us an email or create a comment. See you!
See what People have created with Gravit Designer #5 was originally published in Gravit Designer on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.