Donnerstag, 13. Dezember 2012 Blog Aktion!!!

Hey ihr Lieben, vielleicht hat der ein oder andere schon von der Bloggeraktion auf gehört? Ich habe gestern das erste mal davon gelesen und habe mich kurzerhand dazu entschlossen mitzumachen.

Auf könnt ihr euch euer Lieblingsfoto auf Leinwand , Acrylglas oder Aluminium drucken lassen - und das ist nicht genug! Sowohl Fotobücher, als auch Fotokalender hat meinfoto im Angebot. Diese natürlich in hoher Qualität und zu günstigen Preisen. Klingt doch gut oder? 
Aber es kommt noch besser:

Die Bloggeraktion besteht darin, einen Beitrag über zu bloggen, einen Link, welcher auf die Homepage führt, einzurichten und entweder links oder rechts das Logo von meinfoto in die Sidebar zu positionieren. Anschließend einfach von der Aktion auf eurem Blog berichten und den Eintrag an folgende Mailadresse schicken: 

Was dabei für uns heraus spring? Einen 50 Euro Gutschein!! Wahnsinn. Dieser ist jedoch ausschließlich für Leinwände nutzbar und die Versandkosten sind exklusive, also müssen selber getragen werden. Aber das ist ja alles ein Klacks, wenn man mal bedenkt, was man dafür bekommt!

Perfekt für die bevorstehende Weihnachtszeit. Ich habe selber schonmal ein Fotobuch auf bestellt und war davon mehr als angetan. Deswegen dachte ich, meinen Eltern als Weihnachtsgeschenk ein Foto auf Leinwand zu drucken. Wie könnte dieser Zufall also besser sein? Auf auf. Macht mit! Ich bin mal gespannt, ob alles so reibungslos funktioniert, wie es versprochen wird!! Ich werde berichten.

Samstag, 14. April 2012

decorating your dungeon

Spring! Ice-walls melt and reveal hidden paths. All fleeing units rally and all your command cards come back to your hand! And, by the way, it is the best season to plant turnips, cucumbers, and cabbages in Harvest Moon!!!

What better time a year to clean up and refurbish your apartment, cave, wizard tower, tree house, carved-out dragon skull … or whatever you live in.

How about some really cool wall-decals?

Forget coffee!! Just take a look at your Bit-Tripper decal and start jumping & dashing to work … Ninja- style!

The mushroom kingdom must be a great place to live. Imagine, flesh-eating-mushroom-people [thank god they have no arms...] chasing you down, hideous bird-turtle-hybrids preying on you and even in the depths of the ocean little weird octopus-things wanna shoot you right on sight! And did I mention the the huge lizard who is constantly trying to abduct your girlfriend for no reason at all??? That's the mushroom Kingdom. And you can make it part of your beloved home! 

You like video-games? But you LOVE photography? Combine your two passions with this awesome decoration-statement:

I also found this custom made sprite-art. It looks really nice and individual and gives your living room a certain edge.

Missed an important appointment and no save-game available? No More! Travel the winds of style!

“Hey what time is it?” - “Dunno... Can't see shit on this resolution...”

Every secret hideout needs light! (because windows don't go well with secrecy..)

 Caution: coins not included! … so don't bother punching it.

Donnerstag, 12. April 2012


We all love.....Merchandise!! Goodies!!!! Collectibles!!! This stuff is the way to show your deep dedication to things that matter to you. Guess what's matters to me? Nah... I 'won't tell ;) But I know what matters to my lovely room-mate:


For one of the most innovative and funniest game in a decade, it has also some of the most incredible merchandise-stuff I've ever seen for a video game.

Let's start with an exact replica for one of the ...4.... main characters:

GladOS! Basicly its piece of hardware strapped to a potato.. a sexy potato! But hey, that's what this girl looks like. Deal with it!

Next in line is your one and only friend in the entire game. Your lovely, trusting, indispose-able Companion Cube! It has 8 shoulders you can cry on, if you ever find yourself trapped in a giant Labyrinth of DEATH! Give it all your loving and a giant hug...

Ever wanted to impress a girl/boy/grandchild with your extensive graphic novel collection? There is no better way to present them as in these cool looking bookends:

 Ok, but the best thing I saved for the last.

A talking portrait of Cave Johnson!!!

Yep... there is motion sensor build in, so every time you walk by, you can hear one of his many wisdoms. But who I am? Let this marvellous man talk for himself:


I'm speechless of how awesome this is!

GIMP with lots of woob-woob

Tired of using sprites directly ripped from games? Always wished you can make bead-sprites from high-rez pictures? Or just want to convert your favourite piece of art into a stylish 8-Bit graphic? Maybe I can help....

For the following, I'm going to use the program GIMP, a unix free-ware available via the integrated software-center. GIMP is a usefull tool for image processing and manipulation, compare-able with Photoshop...well not nearly as all-mighty as PS, but it has some tricks up his sleeves!

Let's get started!

I picked this nifty little critter to become my next bead-sprite project:

he loves his dubstep!

The resolution is 72dpi with a 495x511 pixel image sizes. As you can see, the picture is smooth. No individual pixel can be seen without a massive zoom.

At the beginning we need to re-asset the colour palette. Choose Image → Mode → indice.
Here we can assign the maximum number of colours used in the picure. Depending on the number of different beads at your disposale, you have to choose what is possible and what not. Here is an example: The old NES had a colour palette of 48 colours and 6 grays available. The SNES had a total of 32,768 possible colours! Ok, at first, this may sound massive, but in practice all sprites using a layered 256 colour mode. So, we are going to set the colourmax to 256. Confirm.

Next, is the overall sizes of the image. 495X511 can likely be considered as overkill. Keep in mind your average pegboard is around 30x30. So you need at least 9 boards to make a 90x90 sprite. If you have a lot of unused space in your image, do this neat little trick: Choose Image → fanatic cut. Now all unnecessary edges should be gone and the size reduced.
Let's say we have 9 boards. Go Image → scale → and type in your max pixel number, in this case 90. The picture is now ready to be pegged! 

With great sprites, comes great confusion! (thanks oncle Ben...) What I mean is, it's easy to get lost within large sprites. So we can use some help to identify individual pixels. To accomplish this, we go Image → raster configuration and set the space to 1 pixel. To view the raster go View → show raster. That makes things a LOT easier!

So, I guess we are done now. All what’s left is to translate your image to your pegboard and show-off with your new fancy, custom beadsprite and to collect all the fame you deserve!!

Mittwoch, 11. April 2012


Ok, this might be a little bit out of place on a Blog like this... but I think it's important. Our media, newsreports and cable-networks become more and more influenced by factors who don't necessarily stand for free-speech and impartial newsreports. They bow to viewer-ratings and personal profit. This makes serious journalism obsolete and will eventually silence all critism to „their“ point of views. But there are alternatives!

Kontext-TV is platform for serious and substantial journalism, free from the boundries of other news-stations. It is completly dependend on charity and the staff consists completly of volunteers.
They reflect on political and economical events in a very professional manner and give in-depth explanations.
The best: All articles are also available in english.

If you are at least a bit interested in what the hell is going on in this world, you should give these people and their platform a chance. You won't regret it.

Where no [real]man has gone before...

Stalking the internet for awesome/useless stuff is one of my many passions. On my last scavenger hunt through these infinite vastness I've found some incredible good stuff:

Star Trek bathrobes!!!

You can choose between Science-Officer-blue, command-gold and the infamous expendable-red!!
Wearing one of these in the morning, drinking coffee and sending red-shirts to their inevitable death.... life can't get much cooler than this!!!

… I said „can't get MUCH cooler than this“..... BUT IT CAN!!!

Behold: the inflatable command-chair!!! 

Oooh yes. No one will question your authority while sitting on one of these!!!!
Take your rightful place, and order one at

The best part: you can combine it with your bathrobe, and become the closest thing to this:

And while we are in space, check out this one:

...yep, its fully poseable ;)
 Make your first contact with it, at

Montag, 9. April 2012

Getting started...

Hey! Ready for round two in my bead-sprite special?

Ok, today I will take a look at the materials you will need to get started. First of all you have to make a decision:

Take the blue pill, and stay in wonderland. Take the.... Ahh! This one never gets old! :) So, back to business:

Either, you go with HAMA, or you take Perler/Photopearls. This is quite important, cause you want to stick with one branch and don't start mixing. But this point I will address later..

HAMA is more “available” in Europe (and more importantly for me: Germany). Every good toy-store should have a dark, dusty corner with creative-crafting materials. When you are lucky, you will find some HAMA 1000er SINGLE color beads under all these cog-webs. Now this is important: DON'T buy multi-color buckets!!!!! You will regret it. Hell, you will! First it sounds like a great deal. A lot of different colors, all in one bundle for a reasonable price. Believe me, you will go nuts finding the right color over and over again... until you realize you are out of black, but still have TONS of...lets say green... no one likes green... In the end you will pay double, so just stick with single color packs and stay sane while peg'ing.
HAMA beads come in three different sizes: mini, medium and big. Forget about the big ones, they really can be considered as child's play. The most common sizes for bead-sprites is medium. They have roughly the same size as the beads from the other manufacturers, so mixing is a possibility. Mini's are useful for crafting jewelry-sized sprites, for example earrings, necklaces and rings. If you want to make a rather complex sprite in a reasonable sizes, minis is the way to go! All sizes require special pegboards and except for mediums have quite a limited color range (well, recently HAMA has nearly all medium colors available for minis too!)

Perler/Photopearls are a bit more “illusive”. The best way to find some is “Callahan13” is a very reliable supplier with lots of rare colors in stock and fair prices. But brace yourself for some serious shipping costs.... Unfortunately Perler isn't shipping to Europe, so you have to rely on re-sellers and auctions. There are some online stores out there who ship to Europe as well... “blue'n dash” crosses my mind...

Earlier I said mixing isn't such a bright idea, and I meant it! Hama beads are tiny bit thinner and smaller then Perler beads. This results in a noticeable gap between the beads on your board. I don't say it is impossible to fuse them (I do it myself from time to time...) but you have to apply a bit more pressure and heat while ironing. This can easily lead to disaster for your sprite. The worst case is, your sprite looks like s**t if you fuse them too long. The other scenario isn't any better. The mentioned gap will hinder the fusion and the result is a partly fused sprite with holes in it (some un-fused beads will remain on the board). So I say, for a thing that took 3-4h making... Safety first!!! Don't mix. Unless you are a pro...or really me ;)


Remember when you were a kid and the first time you walked into a candy-shop? At first, your head will feel it will explode, confronted with all the choices. But, stick to the plan! Only take what you need, close your eyes, and walk straight out of it! Otherwise you will spend your entire college fond on
little plastic thing'ys.... believe me, I know what I'm talking of...
Undoubtly, Perler has the biggest variety. They have tons of different colors and their subsequent shades. Any color used in 8 or 16-Bit Sprites can be found within the Perler-range. Beware! Some colors are more common then others... (I'm looking at you prickly pearl....)
HAMA is more “konservativ” in their spectrum, but still have a descent amount of colors to realize any kind of sprite from the old arcade-machines. Sometimes you will have to make compromises and do some minor color variations, but It won't effect the overall look of the sprite.


They come in different sizes and shapes. But you want the basic rectangular ones. They can be attached to each other to form a more reasonable space to work with. It all depends on the size of your project. SNES sprites for example, are in 16 bit. That means you will need a least 4 of them connected to make a ...lets say... SNES sprite. 
Bigger sprites need bigger boards. Just take a look at the picture:

Planning ahead for your sprite is of the essence! You don't wanna start and realize in the middle that you are running out of boards to finish it...

Again, sticking with one brand is necessary. Hama and Perler boards can't be connected with each other. You can use f.e. Hama boards with Perler beads and vice versa... but you will run in the same problems I explained earlier. For my part, I like the clear Perler boards.... they are durable as hell and won't deform even under great temperatures.


Now comes the tricky part! You spend ours translating your sprite to the board and It all comes down to this! Cover your sprite with ironing paper or oven-paper and start ironing it. Put it on medium heat and NEVER EVER use steam....just don't! Try not to apply a lot of pressure or you will start shifting beads out of their places. Stay in motion and start with the outlines. Make sure you cover the whole sprite and didn't miss any corners. After around 3-5 min (~ 1 min when working with minis) you are done. Let it cool down and remove the foil. Turn your sprite around and iron it again from the other side, but this time only 2 min. Double-ironing has two advantages: first, your sprite is more durable and less likely to break. Second, your sprite will always curve to the opposite side. Double-sided ironing is a good way to even-out the curving. Especially with very large sprites, the curving can become really annoying.. So, if you want some great pieces of pixel-art on your wall, double-sided ironing is a must!

Huu, that's it for now. Oh! Before I forget:

Of course there is a great community behind all this. For inspiration and other useful tips&tricks you should give a try. In my opinion the best place for pixel-art on the net.

So long, happy peg'in!