How to Create a Simple Pixel Art Avatar with Photoshop
On many sites across the internet you will find personal profiles with custom avatars representing the person. These avatars can range from personal pictures to just silly images that make people laugh. In any case, this is a representation of you and can be something you can have fun with. Pixel art can be an interesting avatar for whatever website you frequent. Crafting a pixel art avatar is a very simple thing to do and can be accomplished using any image you want. Here we will look at the steps for making a customized pixel art avatar with the use of Adobe Photoshop.
The first step in image editing is simply finding the image you want to use and opening it up inside Adobe Photoshop. For this particular editing procedure you can use any image you please. It can be a picture of you or just some random image. Once you have located and opened your desired image inside Photoshop you will want to start by selecting the Crop Tool located in the left side tool bar. The purpose of cropping is so you are only using the most important part of the image. Avatars should be specific and not an entire landscape image. When cropping hold down the shift key when dragging to create a perfect square. Once you have selected the area you want to use simply press enter to confirm your selection.
Sometimes you may decide to use an image that may require some tweaking in order to get it perfect. You can fix this by adding sharp contrast to your image with the use of the Unsharp Mask filter. Go to the Filters Menu > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask and you will want to go crazy with this step and really overdo it. The more contrast you add to the image the better it will be in the end. You will need the extra contrast by the end of your editing.
Now that you have done this you will want to resize your image to the correct avatar size. Every website that allows the use of avatars will tell you the exact maximum dimensions for what your avatar can be, however if you cannot find the information it is a safe guess to resize your image to 128 x 128 pixels. Once you have resized your image you will get a good idea of how your avatar will look.
After you have resized your image you will want to play with the levels of the image by using the Levels tool. You can access this tool by using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + L. You want to use the levels tool in order to bring out heavy highlights and contrast. Once you have finished this step you will do the final step of creating a pixel art avatar which is adding a final filter. Simply go to the Filter Menu > Pixelate > Mosaic and watch as your image turns into a mesh of heavy pixels. At this point you can save your image and upload it to any website of your choosing.