Getting started with PixelLab

Getting started with PixelLab

Welcome to the PixelLab documentation! This guide will help you get started with PixelLab and show you how easy it is to use it to generate pixel art. This tutorial will walk you through the basics of creating a game character sprite using the generate image (style) tool.

The generate image (style) tool

Open Aseprite and select Generate image (style) from the menu.

PixelLab opens automatically when you start Aseprite but if it is closed then you can open it again through the menus:

Edit > PixelLab > Open plugin

or by pressing,

ctrl + space + p.

the PixelLab menu


It's usually a good idea to start from an init image. The init image is optional but it is one of the best ways to improve the results you're getting from PixelLab. You can start from a very rough sketch like this:

a sketch of a human mage

We'll use the following settings for the generation:

  • Description: Human mage
  • Use init image: Yes
  • Image size has been deprecated. Use a rough init image or a draw a shape with inpainting to control the size instead.

Everything else was left as the defaults you see in the image. Let's click Generate!

the generate image (style) tool dialog in Aseprite

The first result

The model gave the following output. If you're following along you will get another result since the generation is random.

the generated human mage

The sprite is pretty good but there are definitely some parts that can be improved, it's not exactly clear what he's holding in his hand and the head looks a bit weird. Let's try to use inpainting to fix these issues.


Click Back to return to the tool options and then, select Use inpainting.

This will create a new layer on top of the generated image that we can use to paint black over the parts that we want to change.

Let's try to fix the head first, this is how my image looks after painting over the head in the inpainting layer,

Changing the head with inpaintingChanging the head with inpainting

Notice in the settings that the newly generated frame is now the init image. We'll lower the Init image strength slightly to make the model care less about this image and then click Generate again.

This time, this is the output,

The mage with the head fixed
use inpainting selected in the dialog

Init image and inpainting

Ok, now that we're satisfied with the head let's try to fix the hand as well. This time let's combine both inpainting and init image.

We'll modify the image slightly and then paint over the area around the hand in the inpainting layer. This is how it should look:

Changing the head with inpaintingChanging the head with inpainting

We have drawn a rough sketch of a fire hovering above the character's hand.

Setting for inpainting and init image

The final result

After clicking Generate again we get the following output:

The final mage

You can continue iterating like this as many times as you want until you are happy with the result.