Self reflection on our own work?

For all the avs, sigs and what-nots that get posted on this board, we don’t really talk much about it. I’m sure that by now a lot of the posters who’ve been contributing the most have developed their own styles and sensibilities into the work they put out, so why not take a moment to reflect on that? I’ll start. But please, someone respond to this thread with their own self-assessments, because if not I’ll just look sad.

I started using photography in my Photoshop work earlier this year, when I got my digital camera for Christmas. At this point I wanted to play with angles and perspective a lot, so every pic I took was either from above or below the subject. I like to integrate at least one random picture into anything I work on, and in this example I used a stock photo of a plastic grate tube. Something I love to do with photographs is try to make them look less like reality and more like something drawn. In this case I used the poster edges filter and tried to smudge up the subject a bit. This isn’t my best example so far of that technique, but I’m satisfied with it. The image that appears at the top right is of the subject embraced with his girlfriend, which I took a picture of while in the backseat of his car through his side-view mirror. I integrated that image into this one because I knew she was a significant person to him, and thus an important part of who he is.

With that said, I think one thing that IMM lacks in the work we produce is the emotion of narrative. We very rarely choose to tell stories with our work and neglect to stimulate the viewer with feelings of happiness, sadness, anger, or confusion. It requires both great detail to the subject, and to the context of the work. Many of the pieces we generate, tags to avs, focus on the subject, which is a sprite more often than not. We like to put detail into the effects, but it all gravitates around the sprite. Usually, the form of our avs depends on our sprites.

So, sometimes I try to explore subject and context and try to leave a hint of human emotionality into my work.

In this tag, I used some cute SD icons I gleaned from a Japanese (or Korean) Tekken BBS. Thinking about the customization of T5 characters, and wanting to comment on the proliferation of people who are afraid of innovation (like elitist fighting gamers, certain conservative viewpoints, and people who make sig banners using ctrl + u), I wanted to do something cute and maybe let people think a little.

Compositionally, this is my best tag. I found a photo I took of the highway, tilted it a bit, and what do you know, it was prime for a sig. The text originally said “GGPO BITCH!” but the contest I designed this for specified no cursing. So I just switched “BITCH” for “ABERCROMBIE & FITCH.” Somehow, I think it worked out even better. I like the divided color scheme, just almost invoking the classic Cowboy Bebop OP sequence. I scanned in some random white pages numbers for the shredded paper on the left, which was just one of my mixed media experiments.

Capcom City tag I made for credit, but I never earned enough to get me a Street Fighter t-shirt. ;_; It’s got a minimalist touch, looks kind of faded out, with the edge of the text just barely blending beyond the dimensions of the tag. That particular text effect I stole from someone at TagMonkey, who probably did it better.

I don’t think I posted this one here. I consciously went for the symmetrical effect, keeping in mind the dual-eyed nature of the Uchiha house Sharingan. I hope that the tag was effective.

I sometimes like to finger myself while I make avatars…



so this is your secret…i’ve should have known :rolleyes:

anyway, if it were’nt for me bein’ a broke, black man i’d have a lot more material to post but this is very old stuff that i happend to still have.

this one is coo’. my whole idea was to take some females that i saw on the internet a while back and have them look like they were on a basketball team, ie, dream team of mine. i needed Monkeyspank to animate it for me. this was my first request for a av in IMM. thankx again, spank :tup:

Ah, Areka. damn she’s fine. i just wanted to make somethin out of that pic cuz i though she was so sexy in those glasses. too bad i suck at making really good BGs.

Melyssa Ford. She’s overratted now, but back then i had to do somethin’ as a av so once i saw her on that cover of SSX…the rest is history. i still suk at BGs.

this is me attempting to do a good job. meh. better, but still needs work. i should’ve put borders on that :rolleyes:

Chrissie Collins: I still have a crush on this woman :lovin:. Suck-ass BG, but good editing skills with an eraser.

the only drawing that i have that i’ve never got the chance to work on. suks not to own a computer and PS. :tdown:

To tell the truth I’m only pleased with a few of my avs. Most of them were just ideas, but never really something that I felt proud of doing, just trying to show an idea of some weird nature.

Interestingly enough, people expected the series to continue after #2. And to tell the truth I didn’t have anything planned for #3. A general idea, once again inspired by the source material but this was a total departure from the previous versions. I actually decided to add in other things that I felt were funny. Just to spare you the suspense, it didn’t work out to be as funny as the previous ones.

#3 was the first time I deviated to form my own real plotline to the source material. Hell it didn’t even relate or fit in the storyline in the original sprite comic, the bartender was the one who Samus and Mario was trying to visit in the hospital. Mario didn’t even take drugs in that one, but his flashback to his botch up was present. But I had other ideas.

One of the more obscure references was to a movie Playing God in which David Duchovny played an out of work doctor who had his licsense revoked due to a bodged surgery. What happened is that after a surgery he took a “depressant” drug. As he was cozying up with his subdued mood, he was summoned to another emergency surgery. In order to cope with his state, he took an upper drug. Not the best combination. Hence the mushroom and the magic potion.

Of course drug ideas and crazy hallucinations arose in the av. It dragged on and that what was probably the biggest problem about it all. If anything this av taught me to keep av ideas simple.

#4 was an idea that is totally seperate. In fact I can make a follow-up to it, despite being very well ended. I didn’t like the fact that I ended with Mama-Mia, which is a bit too stereotypical for my part…but I had to do at the time. I wanted to so something a bit more…dirty or final for the comedy but I eventually left it as is. I’ve even considered having Terry do a “That’s all folks” type send out with his monkey on his shoulder.


I really like this one because all the characters are just so well animated so that means lots of fluid frames for it. It’s one of my favorites because of the lettering, I just love how it looks. The only problem that I could have which possibly no one knows about at all, is that when I made the border I actually deleted about 2 pixel width line from the "Link Super Portrait"'s sword. It still bugs me to this day, but hey I’m once again too lazy to change it.

I do feel guilty using someone else’s work (moreso than using sprites or sourcing a story) when I made the PPG avs. To tell the truth I love the artwork although near the end the composition does fall apart with a bit too much “chibi” characters. If anything this comic has a great flow to it all, making it the av all the more easier to compose. I had real fun making these because ultimately it really did kinda look animated if someone manages to slap it together like some kinda monkey…a monkey like me.

I like this one in particular because it was one of my better composed ones but moreso that it was under 20Kb but it looks like a prem av. I don’t think I could ever make a 20K av look that good again.

It’s quite sad that Koop and Babygirl have broken up. But even though I remixed an existing av, I think this one was possibly one of the best ones I made. The only grip is that I couldn’t keep in the BG, which would have made it all the better, but nevertheless sacrafices must be made. I just love the fact that I put in so much stuff in there, with little animated quirks. And with Chun-Li’s braclets (which were symbols from Puzzle Fighter), it was made all the cooler to form the Master Card Symbol in the now famous commercials.

This is possibly the best “worst” av I made. I consider it the best because it has pretty good animation in it. And being Megaman and slightly less detailed than other sprites, it was much easier to fit in stuff. But why it’s the worst is many things. The main one is the content. I had hope to find better material to make funnier, but really there isn’t much you can do with Megaman in a club. What’s even worst (no offense to The Damned), I didn’t have much to go on the character of the poster, so I asked him what music he liked. He said Queen.

If you don’t get the joke, “Another One Bites the Dust” is basically referring to how “one by one” the boss killing is in MegaMan. But sadly using that song never really gave any closure to the av, just merely fading out to stupidity. Not to mention that Bass does not move…AT ALL, it made for a really poor looking part of the av. I originally wanted to do a scene similiar to this (not necessarily for The Damned) about Dan doing terrible stand up comedy. But I used this since I was strapped for ideas. That is one thing…often there are ideas that I want to personally use for my avs, but I end up passing it over to other people because they requested something and I need to make it before I could move on.


I love that weeks/link one. That’s probably my favorite of your…or the one where vanessa beats up brad pitt.

As for my work? I haven’t really been doing it long enough to hang with you guys…just about a month. I’ll evaluate it once I’ve actually learned and gotten better, ok?


@ OC-The one with Link is god tier.

this is a really good thread :tup: . nice work everyone :tup: . but ill make my real post in a few.

ill start off with a wallpaper

When i saw this akuma picture, i knew i had to make a wallpaper out of it… but i wanted somethin red and white since i was really feelin those colors at the time. So i thought id go for my first attempt at color edit, and make his gi red. So after making the whole thing black and white, then coloring the red part… i thought it looked good as it is. So after that, i just put some random japenese symbols since i like the way they look lol.

this is the first av i was actually proud of. i made it right after i finished the beserk anime, and i pretty much just wanted to make anything with beserk lol… but when i found the fire, i thought that went well with the what gats went through… and ofcourse i added the symbols cuz i like the way they look
:pleased: lol.

i actually kinda stumbled across these lol. because i was making just another av, and i had some udon art i wanted to use- the one thats on the sfac stick, and some chun li pic i found. so after puttin it together… i really liked the look, and thought i could make a bunch with the same format and with udon/ falcoon art to keep it different. i made a good amount of these, but it became too hard finding pictures lol. i think i made about 15.

this is definitly one of my favorites. when project justice wanted an av with ryu sa3… first thing i thought about was a blinding white light. so i just thought about that and took it from there really, the main thing that gives it that affect is the inner glow on ryu.

this one came to me pretty quik also. when meenaxi gave me that picture of guil, i thought it looked as if there was a light coming over his shoulder… and he also looks calm. so the sunset goes perfect with it. and ofcourse i used some other affects to make it blend better.

hip hop avs
my first (and right now, only) “trend” lol. these avs have alot of meaning to me :pleased: . the ideah came to me when i was watching a music video by K-os, one of my fav artist, and his music is just so authenic and has that old skool hip hop feel too it. but when i say hip hop, i dont mean music, i mean the hip hop culture… i can go on and on about this, but ill stop now b4 its too late lol.

well thats it from me… hope its not too long for ppl to read

Good shit Nas. One thing I noticed is that you do a very good job of compostion and balance. It really shows in your hip-hop avs because the placement of things is pretty much spot on.


Long post alert!

Phase 1
I think this is the very first avatar that I ever made, way back on March 18, 2003. I haven’t improved very much considering this was over 2 years ago ;_; Someone told me that I should try to emulate some sort of light effects, so I posted v2 soon after.

After that I got a hold of a noob gif animator [I STILL don’t know how to use Imageready btw], and I was soon making shitty animated avatars like this one:

It was around this time that I realized that I sucked. Hard. If I was going to succeed as an avatar maker, I had to do something different, so I turned to making silly animated avs.

Phase 2
This is where I discovered the smudge tool and different blend modes. I was trying to experiment a lot, and I think it shows.

This is still one of my favorite avs that I’ve made.

And this is one of the very first tags I ever made.

Phase 3
Early 2004. This was when I started up my second or third request thread on SRK. At this point I was trying to clean up my style and make crisper, cleaner avs. I messed around a bit with silhouettes and microtext~

I still threw out some silly avatars here and there.

These are the only two avs from that time period that I found where I was really trying to experiment and try some new things.

Phase 4
Mid 2004 - mid 2005 was kind of a sketchy period because I put down Photoshop for a while. I discovered Color Balance, but I didn’t really make a lot of stuff during this time.

Yay pixel house!

I also had a joke request thread around this time where I tried not to spend more than a minute or so on avs.

Phase 5
Late 2005 - current. After a long downtime I decided to pick up PS again and discovered the pen tool, downloaded brushes [oh noes!], and adjustment layers, as opposed to Color Balancing [or whatever] a whole tag.

This is also when I started making tags. I was always afraid of working with big canvases because I didn’t know how to fill the space very well, but I started learning some random stuff that helped me with that.

Stuff from my most recent request thread:

And my most recent tag:

I feel like in 2+ years I should have learned a lot more, but I guess I didn’t put as much effort into it as I could have. I’m glad I decided to pick up PS again, though- I feel like I’ve learned a lot in the past couple months.

So yeah, that’s everything. :slight_smile:

Holy wow, that Doom tag is hot man.
Can I use that?

That lynks one is hysterical.

sick shyt y2j :tup:

anyway, time for the rest of my av’s that totally suk :sad:

hmm…brings back some memories, but i never used it.

wtf was i thinking… :confused:

:lol: , aww man, it just keeps getting worse and worse.

i still kinda like this one. if i had prem. back then i’d picked a better BG and i would’ve used the “VS” from SF2T. just mite do this one over when i get my shyt together

well…she did… :clap:Cute Taye has her moments

Gloria Velez. man i wish i could’ve done more with this. damn sucky art program crap :mad:

You know, I like how OC is the master of av trends on SRK (and HerV). He’s always able to emulate pop culture and twist it to his own whims. He’s like Image Mishmash’s very own Andy Warhol, with less toe fucking.

shatta: You have this way of editing a girl out of her pics and putting her into your avs and making it look very sharp. I like that, and it even makes your self-admitted barebones backgrounds look better.

Nas: Post more of your shit! How long have you been at this? Your avs have style, especially those three you did based on UDON’s comic.


That particular style of blending… I see it a lot from TagMonkey. Actually, could you elaborate on it?


Sure, go for it. :slight_smile:

Sure, I can try to answer whatever questions you have about the tag. But what exactly do you mean by “blending?” That’s a pretty broad term.

Thanks Y2J :wink:

note to everyone, i bet no one here knows me but i’m still learning. picked up photoshop not too long ago.
first wallpaper i made, good-tutorial’d and just colored a picture.
2nd wallpaper i made. another good-tutorial (for the most part).

not my first av, but this is my first animated one. kind of a cut and paste type of av because the sprite doesn’t go w/ the background

2nd animated av. i wanted a rock av but the size was WAY to big (cham resized it but i didn’t save it).

yeah, i still didn’t know how to make backgrounds…

STILL didn’t…but i like this one

trying to learn how to make backgrounds now…

grunge. and very plain. still trying to learn how to make backgrounds

the last av i made. i always thought ibuki was cool so i wanted to make an av. i thought this one was… decent

colors don’t even match… and clouds as the background was the only thing i knew how to do for a long time

GunZ. i like this one but i think it could’ve been a lot better. finally learned how to brush a little.
GunZ wallpaper. practicing my brushing.