ZX SPECTRUM GRAPHIC by YERZMYEY

 

Although I started to make Speccy programs and music pretty early,  I didn't really make then any real graphic for the machine, as I stated it's too hard to me. 

ZX Spectrum has 15 colours. There are 2 palettes of 8 colours each, but the black is... always black. ;) However it's good because we use black for masking, so actually I can't imagine making hi-res standard mode pictures with the 16th colour (rarely some models of ZX have brown instead of second black). Also, Speccy's graphic is 1-bit only, with colour attributes. That means: in one square 8x8 pixels You can't use (in the standard gfx mode) more colours than 2. And moreover, they can be chosen from only one of the palettes. So drawing anything reasonable, with such limitations, was far too difficult to me. ;) 

Although I was often drawing some comic-book-like pictures (and comic-books themselves) on paper, still I wasn't able to make any graphic for my beloved computer - which was annoying. ;)

 

With time, I stated that maybe I should change my approach. Instead of all the fancy "dithering-like" gfx, I wanted to force the machine to display pictures with plain pure 'comic-books' colours - that was really missing on Spectrum pics. 

 

And then I invented something that I called "stained-glass window" style. ;) ;) ;) Well, probably I wasn't the first, supposedly many people before me thought about it and used it, however I made it my the main and the only method of creating ZX gfx. :) 

 

What I mean is: if Spectrum colours can be square-only, rigidly placed in attributes, so I should mask them with black and thick contours that could be curve lines - and if they're thick enough - they will mask the square attributes. 

And... that works! ;) 

 

My weapon of choice is the simplest and one of the most early graphical programs: ARTSTUDIO 48K

                    ArtStudio48K, Polish language version.

 

It has no any sophisticated effects nor capabilities like the modern ZX Spectrum gfx-editors do (BGE or Excess de Luxe Paint) but it's enough for my humble needs. 

 

 

To draw in RGB mode (each pixel has its own colour but only 8 colours are accessible from the 15 colours of ZX Spectrum), available for 128K machines, I use Alone Coder's "8 color (3Color) Editor v0.12". The problem is, there is no good viewer of this gfx-mode for British Spectrums, as far as I know. 

                            8 color (3color) Editor v0.12

 

So anyway. My pictures are crap and stupid but several people really like them, so I decided to make some "gallery" of my graphic here. Enjoy. ;) 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Women's friend (1999) 

This was my very first _real_ picture for ZX Spectrum, at first only 1-bit (2 colours). First of all, I hated drawing by joystick. It takes away all the naturalness of human's hand moves. Mouse isn't much better neither. So the next reasonable step was... simply to draw the stuff by hand and scan such a picture into a PC. After rescaling into 256x192 there appeared a real mess on the screen. So what I found was: to obtain 'natural' pictures I had to draw with my own hands but it's only about 20% of the work. Then, there still remains about 80% of laborious and arduous heavy work with pixeling (shouldn't it be "pixelling"??!)

For most people it would be a torture but actually I really like to sit over the ArtStudio and draw this crap, pixel by pixel.:)

 

 

 

 

The larch (1999)

And that's how it started. ;) My veeeery first colourful picture for ZX Spectrum. :) Well - maybe not exactly: at first I was not very self-confident about the method, it was something like a test, so as You can see, there are only several "fields" (also literally ;) ) that are separated each other with the thick contours and have their own colour - it was kinda experimenting. 

 

 

 

Colourful fuckin' dog (1999)

Yeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaah, this is my first colourful ZX picture where I wasn't too much afraid of drawing anything this "stained-glass window" style. Now all objects - even those smaller ones - AT LAST could have their own colours! :) Like the dog, haaaaaaaaaaahahahahahahah!!! :) I even sent it to some compo and it took something like 2nd place, which was rather surprising. :)

 

 

 

A non-complete fish (1999)

As You can see, the method has its limitations - really small objects like the fish, or the snail, are simply... too small ;) to have their own colours, so I left them as they were. 

 

 

 

Death (1999)

 

 

 

Hello mommy!! (1999)

More experiments here. Except of the "stained-glass window" ;) ways, I also added regular visible attributes, to use them as a wallpaper, hehe. Also, when one knows how to use the method, he can draw some other objects, like the spider that is totally black, so it doesn't need the special contour and still has eyes in their own colour, hehe. ;) That's what masking is for.

 

 

 

TombRider Part 10 (1999)

At some point I started also adding some 'pattern filling' to make those surfaces more diverse. Actually some people were not happy about it and commented that they preferred plain-colour fields (that are rare on Spectrum) over the dotted ones.

Nice tits, huh?

 

 

 

The best friend of man (2000)

 

 

 

TV-set (2000)

A picture with RUBIN - famous Russian TV-set. :) The "set" word is dangerous here because those TV-sets were able very likely to SET Your apartment on fire. :) Which actually happened to my aunt, hahaha. ;) But I also had this TV-set for maaaaaany years and it worked perfectly well. :)

 

 

 

Vampire Empire (2000)

As You can see, it's a more tricky picture with the method. I used the Vampire's hair and his collar instead of the thick contours - and it worked just fine. ;) Hehe. 

 

 

 

Little Green Flying Muthafucka (2001)

An inverted way this time. Everything's black, so no actual "contours" are required. ;)

 

 

 

Look children, this is a cat (2001)

Hmmmm. Tits again!? ;) This is kinda joke because it shows (on the "painting" ;) ) what I can actually draw with a joystick, hehehehehe. 

 

 

 

Stupid point of view (2001)

From the same series what the above. With the same idea. But the proper pic is much more complicated. All those wooden rings/grains were typical "pain in the arse" to draw. First - of course by hand - and then 3x that pain to correct them pixel by pixel on ZX Spectrum. :) 

 

 

 

Matrix (2001)

My first attempt to use GigaScreen gfx mode (2 pictures changing quickly to obtain more colours). This mode is used only on 128K models (they have two videorams, unlike the 48K models). Well, my using of it was pretty crap and actually I don't like this pic, heheh. It was rather only an experiment in fact. If You want to load this file into Your computer, remember this is not a scr - it is a picture with its own loader/player, so just use LOAD "" (in usr 0 mode), and **not** LOAD "" SCREEN$: PAUSE 0.

 

 

 

Clouds (2002)

 

 

 

Spider-man (2002)

 

 

 

Satan Claus (2004)

 

 

 

Worm and wet (2014)

Another standard gfx-mode picture. 

 

 

 

Putieshiestwije k Demopati / A travel to demoparty (2016)

My pic from DiHalt 2016 party. It came 6th for entire number of 20 works. Not that bad. ;) 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My pictures for non-standard graphic modes of ZX Spectrum platform: 

Koldun (Wizard) 2008

Well, that's another experiment with Spectrum128's graphic modes. This is a mode consisted of 3 screens instead of 2. It's commonly called the "RGB mode". More rarely - "3 colours mode" because of 3 RGB colours or "8-colours mode" (because it uses only 8 colours from Spectrum's 15-colours palette) but in this mode all pixels have their own colours, there are no attributes at all. 

Due to 3 screens changing quickly, the picture can blink on regular CRT monitors/TV-sets, but it is pretty stable on LCD monitors (that modern Spectrums mostly use). And on ATM Spectrum or ZX Spectrum Evolution this picture will not blink at all, it will be totally stable because those Spectrums have hardware support for such a gfx-mode and they are able to "switch off" the attributes. 

Although it has only 8 colours of standard ZX Spectrum's palette, I must admit I like it somehow. 

To watch the pic on ATM or Eva, please use the RGB-Viewer

To watch it on Pentagon 128 You can use the editor I draw the picture in - the "8 color (3Color) Editor v0.12" by Alone Coder. ("L" to load the pic, SHIFT+1 to watch it). I don't know if there is any proper utility to watch this kind of pictures on British Spectrums, sadly. 

 

 

 

Jungle (2014)

An RGB picture with viewer for regular Pentagon and for ZX Spectrum Evolution. There are viewers for regular ZX Spectrum 128K but they are bad, so I wait for some coder to write a proper viewer of this gfx-mode, for British ZX128 machines. And my hair goes silver, day by day. Actually it also go off my head. 

The picture took 5th place (for 13 works) in the International Vodka Party 2014 ZX meeting, in the ZX Evo GFX compo. 

 

 

 

Lieutenant Pickled (2014)

Like the above. Although it took only the 10th place. ;) Dunno why. It's kawaii!! Hahahah. 

 

 

 

   

I made those pictures about 2003 year. There is no editor for this gfx-mode (that I know of, anyway) and I made them on PC, sent to Gasman and then he converted them into a ZX files. The mode allows to use all 15 colours and each pixel can have (almost) its of colour - as long as it's from one palette. The resolution here is 64x96 pixels. It is one of many Spectrum's multicolour modes and as far as I know it works only on128K machines. 

Those pictures can be watched in two our demos: ALIENATE and SOUND-TRACKER 20th ANNIVERSARY.

 

 

 

 

A cat in 42 colours (2009) 

This is one of the ZX Spectrum low-res modes. With 32x24 pixels and dithering, You can obtain 53 colours. Although it's rather for really hardcore pixels-lovers (well, there exist such people :) ). 

The picture comes from International Vodka Party 2009, a ZX SPECTRUM STUPID GFX COMPO. There was a lot of really good low-res ZX graphix, not as crap as this one. :) 

If You want to draw 53-colours pictures for ZX Spectrum by Yourself, You can use the "ChunkyPaint" editor, designed by Gasman/HOOY-PROGRAM.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My pictures for other computers: 

 

 

COMMODORE 264

Another my favorite platform is Commodore. But not any regular one, but to be exact - Commodore 264 series, which means: Commodore 116, Commodore 16 and Commodore Plus/4. 

These machines have 121 colours and in hi-res mode they behave like ZX Spectrum, as they have 8x8 attributes with two colours inside. And also one can use entire palette if required (if it fits in attributes, haha) but the palette is, like I said, 121 colours and resolution is slightly higher than in ZX Spectrum, which means 320x200 pixels. 

Below You can find my pictures I made for the Commodore 264 series (and obviously they took last places in Commodore parties, hahaha!!!!!)

 

       

Patched sprite (2013)

My very first picture for Commodore 264. I had loads of fun while making it. The only thing I missed - were two colours: red and yellow. The closest colour to yellow is the one You can see on the Sun here. The closest colour to red is one of the colours visible on the castle.  

Hi-res mode, 320x200. 25 colours used.  (Type GRAPHIC1 and press Enter to watch it :) ).

 

 

 

       

Bloodthirsty girl with a meat-lollipop (2013)

And here's my second picture for the C=. As You can see, I experimented here much more with C=264's huge palette. 

Hi-res mode, 320x200. 40 colours used. Type GRAPHIC1 and press Enter to watch it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ZX81

ZX81 is an excellent oldschool computer from Sinclair. It has been released before the ZX Spectrum. Without additional gfx-cards, it has only monochromatic picture (black and white) in several accessible resolutions. 

The standard one is low-res: 64 x 48 pixels. In this mode I use Gasman's editor: ZX PAINTYONE. 

There are also the hi-res modes. The most popular seems to be 256x192 mode. I use it. 

But there is also the maximum hi-res resolution on ZX81 and it is 320x240. 

 

Space Base (2012)

A picture from Retrospective 2012 contest. 

 

 

 

Foto-aparat (2012)

A picture from Retrospective 2012 contest. 

 

 

 

Game of thrones ;) (2014)

It's my picture from the International Vodka Party 2014 ZX meeting, in the ZX81 hi-res GFX compo. It  took 5th place (for 12 works).

The original format is actually the BMP file because this is what ZXPand Commander displays on real ZX81 hardware.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VBXE graphic card of ATARI XL/XE

The VBXE card for Atari XL/XE gives various resolutions (most standard is 320x200 and 320x240) and usually 256 colours. The card uses, for example, regular BMP format. 

For the first in the world VBXE gfx compo that I organized with Pinokio and Mono, I put also a compo-filler picture, named... like below. ;) 

 

Compo-fillet (2014)

This picture was presented on Silly Venture 2014 Atari party and took 3rd place in the VBXE gfx compo.

 

 

 

Edge of reality (2016)

Another picture made for the Atari XL/XE with VBXE graphic-card. From Wapniak 2016 party. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AMIGA 500

Godzilla (2014) 

Presented on Amiparty 2015. Made on AMIGA 500, using the DeLuxePaint IV. Format: IFF, 320x256 x 32 colours.