Learn how to use Pixton prop sets to do more than just store a single item or character- but break them into mixable pieces!
This tutorial is, unfortunately, only useful to those using Pixton Plus.
Creating prop sets can be a simple thing- but to really make full use of it, and enable your creations the most versatility, it can be more involved than you would think. In this tutorial series, I plan to help you learn strategies to make the most of prop sets. You can also take existing ones, and work backwards to 'take them apart' and make pieces into sets. It takes some time and painstaking work, but it can reap many rewards.
This is Zoe, a character you'll see coming up again soon in my works, and has been around before. Here, she is in full 'prop set form'.
Why does a prop set need to be complex? Why not just make a whole item/character, and then save it as one giant prop set? Let's look at an example.
Now, let's say Zoe is in a scene where I need Zoe to look somewhere else- like to another character in a scene. First, I break apart her head prop-set, which is presently all 'one piece'.
For the sake of flexibility and to allow layers (like her eyebrows being behind her hair) I have left most of her head seperate, however, now, we have a bunch of little props that make up her face, hair, and nose, and then the eyes are each full prop-sets.
Now let's look at the eye prop set. I'm going to take this apart, and show you how many props/pieces go into it...
See just how complex one single eye is? That's 22 prop sets for one eye- 44 for two!
Say I want to simply shift the placement of her eyes to better fit her face? That would involve moving 44 prop sets, completely repositioning them, etc. But with them as individual prop-sets...
I just click and drag, and whala, her face looks turned in a new direction- I didn't even change any props.
Also, to increase realism, I have two seperate prop sets for each 'set' of eyes- a left eye, and a right eye. Notice the slight difference? It's a simple flip, but important.
Within the eye, there are two sub-sets, as well, for added flexibility. This way, if I want to change the direction she is looking, I only have to edit the 'iris/pupil' set, and I can also move it around within the whites of her eyes.
To edit a 'set', like one the the eye sets, choose a mid-level colour background like this one, put in the set, alter it, then re-save it. Edit each set individually, then put them together like a puzzle. Let's make her eyes look a new direction- that's two eyes, then putting them on her head (which is not 'one' prop set, to allow me to position the eyes behind her hair, etc)
Then, I put the pupil back onto the same eye-whites prop. I use two screens for this, allowing me to bounce back and forth- one to save and edit the prop set in, another to combine the finished ones in. In this case, this screen and the screen to its left.
Then I flip the white part, but keep the same pupil.
Next, I take the new eye prop-sets, resize them over the old eyes until they are the right position/size, lock them in place, then click on the old eye and delete it.
Now she's looking a new direction.
When you originally make the eye the first time, you either have to make each part seperately, or, as in my case, if they are already made... then, you have to painstakingly delete the part you do not want to save in that frame.
To save the 'whites' but not the pupil, you have to delete all the iris/pupil colours...
More challenging, to get the pupil without the white of the eye, you have to delete the background white and rims, without touchign the pupil.
The end result of all this hard prop-set building...
Is a complete, easily movable and fully customizable prop-set based item or character. It also means you can 'plug in' body parts, for example, from old characters into new, interchange, etc. It is like adding new tools to your tool box.
By simply replacing the eyes and the mouth, I've created an entirely different character- all from previous eyes/mouths I have made, and saved, from other creations!
As AXMLY pointed out- credit for the body and initial hair/face design goes to him, for his Camille. As you can see, I saved all the prop sets from working on Camille-upgrade. I used his hair/blank face as a templet :)
Now, go give it a try yourself! Learning to use Pixton props like this will open whole new doors in comic creation for you. It may take more time at first, but you will soon find yourself able to make many more comics, with a lot more complex detail and custom parts, a great deal more quickly! Try it, and post your links below to show me what you've done! -Patrick