Elk's Forest Of Desolation

Elk's Forest Of Desolation

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Elk's Forest Of Desolation

Title: Elk's Forest Of Desolation
Pixel Artist: Elk  (Level 3 Stalker :: 10623 points)
Posted: 4/21/2013 5:58:00 AM
Palette: 56 colors
Statistics: 160 comments :: 452 favorites :: 0 avatars

 Can't look at it any longer... +500 hours spent


Top Pixel Art - April 2013 (#1)Top Pixel Art - April 2013 (#1)

What do you think?

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redmilion (Level 1 Rookie) at 6/11/2015 5:35:00 PM

me hizo re cordar a shadow of colosus

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 4/26/2015 11:46:00 AM

thanks :)

dyluck (Level 2 Flatfoot) at 4/26/2015 3:41:00 AM

Art like this makes me think there is actually a God.

Joecreates (Level 2 Flatfoot) at 12/30/2014 9:44:00 PM

My jaw dropped twice. Once when I saw the piece. Again when I read "+500 hours". Oh man. Thank you. :P

Lindion45 (Level 1 Seaman) at 12/26/2014 10:33:00 AM

I am speechless! 

Volrak_Rutra (Level 6 SWAT) at 12/1/2014 11:49:00 AM

i would love to see the process of this.

RBL (Level 2 Quiet One) at 11/28/2014 4:38:00 AM

OMG only 56 colors!!!

anodomani (Level 3 Corporate Drone) at 10/20/2014 12:52:00 PM

I think this is the first time I have ever seen something from after 2009 get on the hall of fame.

King of Spades (Level 1 Gangster) at 10/20/2014 6:14:00 AM

Nih (Level 1 Thug) at 9/25/2014 9:30:00 AM

How do you do thissssssssssssssssssss <33333333333

Sunjammer (Level 1 Seaman) at 8/21/2014 4:36:00 PM

ethereal beauty, staggering craftsmanship

Bark Snarly (Level 1 Gangster) at 8/10/2014 8:56:00 AM

Wow, I absolutely adore the soft, muted palette. Looks almost like a painting!

.haski (Level 1 Rookie) at 7/7/2014 7:08:00 PM

Looks stunning! This should have its own feature length.

hwadock (Level 1 Rookie) at 3/19/2014 10:35:00 PM

wow.... i respect you

nedink (Level 1 Intern) at 3/5/2014 4:08:00 PM

I come back to look at this peice once a while, to see if it's still as beautiful as I remembered.  I love that shale stuff you have going up the rock sides, I notice a similar technique in your Deathwing, I think it's my favorite thing I've seen done with a rock surface.  Also I love all the foliage in this piece.

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 2/18/2014 5:20:00 PM

danke süßer :P

Mandrill (Level 7 General Manager) at 2/18/2014 2:26:00 PM

Da attestiert sich mal wieder das, in deutschen Gedanken eingenistete, Stereotyp, "Die spinnen doch die Ösis..."

Selbstverständlich auf die absolut positivste Art die man sich nur vorstellen kann... Traumhaft!

Stormacloak (Level 1 Depressed) at 1/24/2014 11:18:00 AM

It's just incredible.

FinoRaptor (Level 3 Hatchet Man) at 11/22/2013 5:43:00 AM

 I think I know you from DA... awesome artwork man

ErnestoBananez (Level 1 Rookie) at 10/26/2013 12:32:00 PM

I love how the rock columns in the background look like lumbering giants.

kaze19th (Level 3 Hatchikyu) at 9/12/2013 4:00:00 PM

 I just don't have the good words... You're awesome.

IllicitPixel (Level 1 Rookie) at 7/8/2013 3:42:00 AM








Is amazing.

Its just so good.

Better than so many other pieces, better than 16x16 better than 32 x 32.

Its better than...


...*leaves in awed silence*

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 6/14/2013 12:12:00 AM

 what an honor! i admire you :) thanks

James McCarter (Level 5 Detective) at 6/13/2013 11:22:00 AM

 Wow.  That is absolutely amazing.  I love it.

castilllo (Level 1 Rookie) at 6/7/2013 12:25:00 AM


killman13 (Level 1 Rookie) at 6/4/2013 5:57:00 AM

Wonderful work!

MasterGrand (Level 2 Corporal) at 6/2/2013 1:39:00 AM

Wow that is amazing !!!

ElCaPixlo (Level 1 Rookie) at 5/28/2013 3:38:00 PM

 So beautifull

HotDog (Level 2 Flatfoot) at 5/25/2013 5:56:00 PM

i'm crying

jamon (Level 9 Federal Agent) at 5/25/2013 2:54:00 PM


Dickel (Level 4 Lieutenant) at 5/25/2013 6:59:00 AM

 Shadow of the colossus 2d

JinJin (Level 1 Thug) at 5/24/2013 8:50:00 PM

 Wonderful, man!

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 5/24/2013 2:04:00 AM

pixel by pixel ^^

saiko-raito (Level 3 Hatchet Man) at 5/24/2013 12:05:00 AM

I dunno how you do that anti alias thing, but this is AWESOME..

catf0x (Level 1 Intern) at 5/23/2013 8:48:00 PM

Awesome! This looks like a painting.

Yielmo (Level 4 Lieutenant) at 5/23/2013 4:33:00 PM

 this is beautiful.

Salahkun (Level 1 Jukyu) at 5/23/2013 10:03:00 AM

 i love this awesome art, dude you are a real artist .

Gengar (Level 2 Hired Gun) at 5/23/2013 3:04:00 AM

 This may actually be the best thing I've ever seen.

Fjara (Level 2 Quiet One) at 5/22/2013 11:50:00 PM

 It`s amazing piece of art. 

Gongrats to 1st place. 

Felix20 (Level 2 Kukyu) at 5/22/2013 11:48:00 PM

This is just amazing, that's all I have to say.

I wish I was there. I want to be there now!

Peyton (Level 1 Gangster) at 5/22/2013 3:32:00 PM

This earned the #1 place for sure.

Brejan (Level 1 Rookie) at 5/22/2013 1:07:00 PM

 Wow, how did I miss this, breathtaking, absolutely amazing, inspirational and excellent work.

Hapiel (Level 11 Admiral) at 5/22/2013 12:53:00 PM

Another well deserved first place for your trophy case! :)

zaua (Level 1 Jukyu) at 5/22/2013 8:39:00 AM


Juniorps (Level 5 Soldier) at 5/16/2013 1:48:00 PM

 Shadow of the colossus? 

Peyton (Level 1 Gangster) at 5/14/2013 7:51:00 PM


This is incredibly impressive!

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 5/11/2013 2:03:00 PM

 yep, you get it :P!!!

Worriedcat (Level 1 Depressed) at 5/11/2013 6:46:00 AM

How the hell do you even do something like this?! It just blows my mind. Do you begin with blocking everything in then start adding texture? This is a damn master piece.

Sylon (Level 1 Depressed) at 5/2/2013 3:29:00 PM

I was actually suggesting they appear more in the background, connected to the cliffs (or gigantic trees whatever they are?) that flank the character and the colossus! Yeah, I much rather like the small detailed stuff in pixel art too.

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 5/2/2013 9:15:00 AM

 i actually played with the thought of adding more stalactites or more greenery, but those would be in the macro view and be more a nuisance in pixelart i think... because i like smaller things more :P they wouldnt require as much detail as other things... 

Sylon (Level 1 Depressed) at 5/1/2013 3:33:00 PM

I see what you mean, Cure.  Although, you are saying the unresolved space draws the eye away, while Onek claimed it was the lighting.  Onek's lighting edit may consequently solve that problem of the spacial balance, but this doesn't mean the original lighting is problematic.  After all, aren't there other ways to resolve the lack of balance in space than having the strong diagonal lighting? For example what if Elk added some more stalactites at the top of the image? Or some large birds? Or extended some tree branches out from the left and right cliffs to form a sort of arch? Otherwise, the "spotlight on the main character" thing manifests as Jetrel pointed out, which in this case may not be necessary (?).

Anyway, I get that Elk is done with this :-) .

Joe/Wrath Designs (Level 7 Sheriff) at 5/1/2013 10:14:00 AM

Wow! This is superb!

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 4/29/2013 6:31:00 AM

 yeah i agree cure, thats why im disappointed at this one more or less, but it taught me alot about techniques and physics as it was a big experiment again :p it was the first time i did some serious attempt of waterreflection in pixelart, though most of this work was bitchwork (AA and dithering) but that cant be avoided, but im still proud of lots of details it consists, so that was a step forward, my next piece will hopefully take more planning into consideration so the compositional issues are resolved too xD

pel (Level 4 Lieutenant) at 4/29/2013 5:49:00 AM

Epic amazing.

cure (Level 10 Capo) at 4/28/2013 9:29:00 PM

I think onek's edit solves a problem. The upper portion of the composition is unresolved and the open space lets the eye escape the image. the strong diagonal in the edit keeps the eye circulating through the image fluidly. I think it's less a matter of narrative and more of a problem with the eye's movement through the composition.

oish (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/28/2013 6:13:00 PM

 it is really an amazing piece...wow

but i think onek's piece is physically easier on my eyes

so it's nothing about u, just my problem

beautiful work

Sylon (Level 1 Depressed) at 4/28/2013 5:45:00 PM

EXACTLY.  Makes sense to me!

Jetrel (Level 1 Intern) at 4/28/2013 4:02:00 PM

I'm sorry, I really have to call BS on onek's suggestion:  " but i also think that the composition is a bit problematic... as delicious said, the eye is heavily drawn towards the background... " 

That is the point.  

I'm saying this not from a "white-knighting" standpoint, not from a defense of "authorial intent", either, but because I really hate these sorts of rules people treat like law.  As far as I can tell, the meat of this rule states that the composition on a picture should always draw the eye towards the main character in the picture - that is, that emotionally speaking, the main character in the picture should always be "center stage", with the limelight on them.  I think that's fine for many pictures, but I think it's dangerous and wrong to say it must be that way for all pictures.  It enforces an emotional tone to a picture that - although it works fine for many characters, works poorly for many other characters.

It makes the character feel like the center of attention - that's totally appropriate for type-A, "look at me" triumphal types.  It's terrible for more passive, elusive, or shadowy type-B figures who actively don't want to be the center of attention.  It just gives off the wrong 'feeling' to the character.


In this piece, the eye is deliberately drawn away from the main character to give off a feeling that he is insignificant in the larger world around him.  Which totally makes sense, because that's central to the game this comes from - being a scrappy, puny human taking on giants.

T1mePiece (Level 3 Hatchet Man) at 4/28/2013 3:10:00 PM

I've been waiting for this piece for a while and I'm glad to say it has excelled expectations. The fact that you can invest so much time and effort into your pieces without altering the concept entirely is fantastic. "Elkcellent" work ;-)

Neela (Level 2 Flatfoot) at 4/28/2013 2:02:00 AM

This is insane! 

JuninFC (Level 2 Hired Gun) at 4/27/2013 11:03:00 AM


d9nis (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/26/2013 3:03:00 PM

this is my far favorite pixel art i've seen oO. I envy you!

Zizka (Level 9 Federal Agent) at 4/25/2013 9:54:00 AM

 Wow, 500+ hours, how inspiring. Magnificient.

K4T (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/24/2013 10:23:00 PM

 Faved 10 times... :D

Sylon (Level 1 Depressed) at 4/24/2013 8:44:00 PM

I have a "contrasting" (if you could call it that) perspective on the composition with regards to earlier comments, particularly the one from Onek.  Rather than become a critic, judging a work of art from the outside, I would choose to "live into" the artist's own idea, own image of his/her creation. What was Elk's goal and did Elk accomplish it? Let's ask Elk. Otherwise, if Elk's goal was silly, then how can one help Elk see that?

I agree with Onek and Delicious that my eyes are somehow pulled as if by a gravity towards the heavily-lit background cliffs and waters. But I don't want to simply stop there - because I also know that I have the freedom to control where my eyes go if I want to. This is why I never let the "wisdom" on how the weaving of compositional elements draws the eye a certain way shape and solidify a law in my head.  Why did Elk depict the light like so? Elk I am curious, what do you have to say about that aspect of your piece?

I simply see the piece as depicting a fantastical place that is meant to take one "somewhere else".  In this "somewhere," the artist (clearly skilled) chose to depict either a place purely as it existed in their mind and wanted to share it, or, purposefully chose to depict a place where the background light was prominent. If it was purposeful, the only thing I can think of is that it brings a sense of hope, or an idea of journeying forth, into the distance, out of the darkness that the forest represents, and the cliffs and waters are part of this hopeful journey.  Whereas, in Onek's edit, the sense of hope coming from the light is there and perhaps more focused, but the cliffs and waters are not really included; they are part of the dark world.

I enjoyed Onek's edit, by the way, but to me, it was just another way of depicting the fantastical place; not better, not worse, but including a different mood. It's like sunset versus high noon.  Both are beautiful or produce beauty, but cultivate in one a different mood.

philippejugnet (Level 6 Hitman) at 4/24/2013 3:19:00 PM


Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 4/24/2013 1:39:00 PM

 haha elkcellent

wreckieb (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/24/2013 12:37:00 PM


slym (Level 8 Rear Admiral) at 4/24/2013 11:29:00 AM

 I haven't commented on this yet o.O 

*slaps self*

Rocks are truly inspiring. Love that texture =]... well, it's all inspiring. damn elk <3

AfroMonkey (Level 2 Dealer) at 4/23/2013 9:43:00 PM

How is this fair? I give up! *throws Paint up in the air*

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 4/23/2013 9:15:00 PM

i take the time for myself that others dont claim :P

DBAce9Aura (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/23/2013 7:38:00 PM

Oh crap. Just how did you find the free time for all that? More importantly, how did you not get a heart attack from this?

Phantos (Level 1 Gangster) at 4/23/2013 7:36:00 PM

 I dig how the mountain sillhouettes in the back almost look like another giant.

I don't think there's a single wrong pixel in this.

Bitslap (Level 6 Manager) at 4/23/2013 4:37:00 PM

How, i.. I can't even.. 

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 4/23/2013 12:05:00 PM

 thanks alot nvision ^^

nvision (Level 4 Team Leader) at 4/23/2013 11:56:00 AM

 I wish I could devote the time and attention you've clearly given this piece.  Beautiful.  That's the most apt description for it.

Occillo (Level 1 Jukyu) at 4/23/2013 8:58:00 AM

 I just want to look at this all day.

Absolutely beautiful!

beef_x (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/23/2013 3:14:00 AM

Holy wow, incredible intricacy.

TheInquisitor (Level 4 Shichikyu) at 4/22/2013 11:09:00 PM

Though I do love this piece, so much so that I've returned to post a second comment, I must say that onek's edit is brilliant. I think his changes take the picture to the next level! Perhaps, if you could muster the energy, you'd try going that route with it in the future?

But alas, I can fully appreciate that after so many hours the enthusiasm has probably all dried up. The original version is still a laudable masterpiece.

I'd buy it for my wall.

programgamer (Level 2 Peon) at 4/22/2013 5:41:00 PM

 I think I just broke. Potato.

Dont (Level 6 Serial Killer) at 4/22/2013 3:41:00 PM

 i'm moved

Andrey (Level 3 Private Eye) at 4/22/2013 1:51:00 PM

Just EPIC! Bravo

Hem-G (Level 1 Thug) at 4/22/2013 12:43:00 PM

 OMG OMG OMG Oh my God !!!! o.O

Cream (Level 2 Quiet One) at 4/22/2013 11:23:00 AM

 What the hell boy.


Awesome work.Can you show me some old sketches of this pixel?

Geolm (Level 2 Flatfoot) at 4/22/2013 10:17:00 AM

jaws on the floor, so many details in this !

Lehmure (Level 3 Sergeant) at 4/22/2013 9:28:00 AM


 Sorry, but no such words to describe this amazing pixel art. And sorry for my bad english.

bienmexicano (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/22/2013 9:25:00 AM

 wow, awesome

Sergiotron (Level 7 Sheriff) at 4/22/2013 8:16:00 AM

 WOW! I'll make 10 fake accounts to fave this more!!! Just one fave feels unfair!!! 

w4rlock (Level 5 Sniper) at 4/22/2013 8:14:00 AM

 simply awesome 

Elk (Level 3 Stalker) at 4/22/2013 7:53:00 AM

fantastic edit!

onek (Level 6 Hitman) at 4/22/2013 7:29:00 AM

  this is a yet again a truly amazing work elk ! 
im totally in love with the textures and those background creatures , but i also think that the composition is a bit problematic... as delicious said, the eye is heavily drawn towards the background... its not really a matter of compositon but more of lighting ... 
lighting imo is the most impotant element to lead the viewer into an image... i fully understand that u are tired of this after 500+ hours, but maybe u should consider working a bit more on this and get a certain place in the annals of pixel art history :)

made a quick lighting edit   


(btw... its amazing how i could just edit this without making it seem super shitty and fake... i mean this is PA but it felt just like editing a drawing or a photo...)

Paulo Peres (Level 6 SWAT) at 4/22/2013 6:00:00 AM


Dastal (Level 6 Hitman) at 4/22/2013 2:30:00 AM

This is not a pic about colossus, this piece is a colossus.

Nether (Level 5 Captain) at 4/22/2013 1:30:00 AM

Really hard to write anything here because of the fact that my eyes just exploded from the pure awesomeness.

elloco (Level 1 Rookie) at 4/22/2013 1:12:00 AM

 Just plain brilliant ... *speechless* ...

Theoden (Level 3 Private Eye) at 4/22/2013 12:48:00 AM

This is an amazing work of art.

Joseki (Level 5 Detective) at 4/21/2013 11:58:00 PM

 This is insane. Respect.

Gecimen (Level 10 Maniac) at 4/21/2013 11:51:00 PM

Finally! Lovable in every detail, even the far silhouettes. Few pieces manage this; both managing to be near seemlessly smooth but also having so much detail that could only be made in pixel level.

There must be a huge misunderstanding here about the "unfinished" places. To me, leaves in the bottom corners were closer to the viewer and thus sharper, which seemed incredibly well thought.

Calling this piece unfinished would be unfair, considering this is pixel art.

JDaddario (Level 1 Seaman) at 4/21/2013 9:23:00 PM

 I was so excited when I saw the preview for this! Yay Elk!

A2J2TIWARI (Level 3 Stalker) at 4/21/2013 9:11:00 PM

 Had to Login just comment on this masterpiece! 

Dude tell me the secret for your improvement as a BYOND's artist!?!? None of the BYOND's artist have improved this much! 

Accept me as your student please D:


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