Making of: Hexels 3 Modern Living Space

Mark Knight is back with a new hexplanation of how he built the slick Modern Living Space from the Hexels Adventures episode. Mark breaks down each step that makes up the scene, which includes the use of new pixel tools to meld with vector shapes.

Get started on your path to geometric goodness with Hexels 3.

Hexels Effects | Normal Map Lighting

Hexels Effects are an excellent way to add a unique spin to your art. In this guide, Mira highlights one of the most exciting effects: Normal Map Lighting. Learn how to animate the lighting of your isometric scene with a simple sequence of layers, from daytime to a starry night sky!

Download the example file and follow along.

Find the Normal Map Lighting effect and others on the Hexels Effects page.

Baking for Maya with Marmoset Toolbag 3

Steffen Unger from Airborn Studios wrote an excellent guide to make it easy to take your models from Maya and bake awesome maps in Toolbag 3’s Baker.

Download the PDF on Gumroad.

Airborn Studio’s has recently worked on blockbuster titles such as Overwatch and Halo 5, check out their work on ArtStation.

Color Palette Magic!

By Ken Kopecky, Lead Hexels Kengineer

Artwork by Mira Karouta, Art Hextraordinaire

Although it looks deceptively like a plain old list of colors, the color palette in Hexels 2 has a few tricks up its sleeve.

“Organize your mind, organize your life.”

While Hexel’s can’t tell you where you left your car keys, it will keep track of all the colors you have dipped your paintbrush into. The color palette helps you track, organize, and play with your color choices off-canvas.

The layout of your palette can help you keep track of what’s what.

  1. Double-click an empty slot to make a new swatch with the currently selected color.
  2. Hold alt and drag an existing swatch to an empty slot to make a copy of it.
  3. Double-click the copied swatch to tweak it in the color picker window.

Automatic Gradients

Having trouble finding the eight perfect color steps between salmon and magenta? Hexels allows you to create gradients right on the palette by dragging one color swatch onto another. All empty swatches in between will be filled with beautiful new hues and shades.
Hexels can even create multi-color gradients, hitting every color swatch along the way as it fills in the empty gaps.

Drag and drop a color onto another to create gradients!

Paint a pretty tree with your shiny new gradient ramps.

Color-Space Travel

Color palette gradients can be formed in two different ways, two different dimensions of color: RGB color-space and HSV color-space. Blends between some RGB colors can look muddied and gray (pop quiz: what’s yellow + blue? You guessed it, a drab gray).

You can set the color palette to use HSV gradients by clicking on the little gear icon.

HSV gradients are formed across the rainbow of hue instead of blending red, green, and blue components individually. This means yellow and blue can make green again!

Note: The color wheel is a circle, it loops around. The shortest path across the hue rainbow may  not always be what you expect.

Import and Export Photoshop Palettes

Hexels can import and export Photoshop’s .aco color palette files. As of version 2.55, Hexels even supports importing Lab colors (yellow, black, chocolate, probably others).