Design by LWebDesigns.Net


Since some people asked me to explain how do I do pixel art/show them the program I use, I decided to do both things…some basic info about the program, shortcuts and the explanation for the tools can be found under the cut.

Welcome to this tutorial for GraphicsGale (shortened Gale from now on) I’m sorry if some things don’t make sense, english is not my first language, you’re free to correct me if you want, I’ll try my best to answer questions if you have them. Enjoy.

So, first things first, What is Gale? it’s a graphics program by Human Balance co. focused on pixel art, it can be found on it’s official site and there you can download it there too. I highly recomend buying it if you liked it, it’s not expensive at all and it’s awesome.

For this first part I’ll just talk about very basic stuff like tools and such, so let’s take a look at the program itself.


It doesn’t look intimidating does it? I even broke up the menus in pretty colors, yay!

1.- (red) it’s a normal menu, like any other program has. I’ll be talking about specifics later on, while I explain how to do stuff.

2.- (orange) basic actions icons, it’s basically a condensed menu; I’ll list the icons, hover up on the words if you want more specific info. New file, Open file, Browse, Save | Undo, Redo |Cut, Copy, Paste | Paste as a new image | Zoom | Grid, Custom Grid, Grid snap | Onion Skin

3.- (yellow) Tools, again, I’ll list the icons, hover for a more specific explanation on each icon. Magnifier, Image Mover, Rectangular Selection, Oval Selection, Lasso, Magic Wand, Color Selection, Pencil, Connect line, Spline Curve, Rectangle, Filled rectangle, Oval, Filled Oval, Flood fill, Color Replacer, Draw text | Antialias, Transparent, Paint mode

4.- (green) Layers menu; New Layer, Duplicate Current Layer, Delete Layer, Combine Layers | Previous Layer, Next Layer | Properties of the Current Layer (I don’t think I need to explain any of these)

5.- (cyan?) Animation stuff; Add frame, duplicate frame, delete frame | previous frame, next frame | properties of current frame | cut frame, copy frame, paste frame | Play, Pause

6.- (blue) your current document window, here I have a gif with 4 frames opened. as you can see the document only shows me one frame at a time, but if you have the preview window open you can see the animation and you can find the frames in the Frame

7.- (purple) Extras! this is another important part of the program, this program has a lot of specific things that are meant for making your life easier at pixelling, you can call the extras in the menu view, and they are Frame, Layer, Palette, Preview and Loupe, I always have the first 4 opened at any given time as they are pretty useful, I don’t really see the point in the loupe, but maybe you will…

Now, some important tips that you may be interested in.

You can dock windows so they’re not floating around like I did with the frames window, simply go to the options (the arrow), select “dockable” and drag the window to whatever corner you want, you’ll notice the outline changes when it’s docked.


You can keep windows collapsed so they don’t use space, like I did with the layers and palette, simply select auto hide in the options menu


You can save a lot of time with shortcuts and button mappings, this program comes with some stupid button mapping (for example, ctrl + or ctrl - aren’t the default mapping for zooming in and out), so if you’re used to another program, you can make them match. Simply go to File > Preferences and change them to your hearts content (or if you dont want to change anything, learn what the shortcuts are)


I hope you guys find this useful, I’ll cover basic pixel drawing on the next tutorial…

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