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Welcome to Sugarrush, a pixel and graphics site by Sophia! This site offers unique and sweet looking goodies and simple tutorials that will (hopefully) give you a sugar rush ♥ There is really a lot to offer, and you will have to discover for yourself - poke around the links to your right and prepare for the sweetness coming your way ^^

20 Dec 2012 Hey all, after a really eventful 6 months or so, I think I'm ready to come back to Neo! I don't wanna get sucked back into the addictiveness of it all, so I'm not sure what I should do with this site. I do love it so much, so I really want to keep it going. If anyone is reading this at all, neomail me and let me know? I really wanna know if there's anyone interested in what I have to offer at all. xx Sophia

18 May 2012: IMPORTANT Sugarrush is on indefinite hiatus. I wish I didn't have to do this, but coming on Neo has become more of an obligation than anything else. I'm sure that at some point, we all feel like this, so please allow me to take a break and sort out things. I don't know when I will be back, but don't bank on it being too soon, okay? Hugs and misses! Check out my userlookup to read more :( and special thanks to whitehouses and all at WHTFP for all your love and understanding. xx Sophia

link back buttons


About the site

Sugarrush was opened on 1 January 2011 together with its ex-twin sister site, Pirouette (which has now closed). It was a great success and has held on till today! It's entire list of past layouts can be found here. I make pixels, scribbles, vectors, buttons and more ^^

About the girl

Hi! My name is Sophia & I am 17 this year. I usually come on Neo about twice a week to maintain my sites and chat in my guild as I have outgrown the gaming part of Neo. Off-neo, I am passionate about all things dance. Ballet is the love of my life but I am unable to pursue it further by getting a degree in dance performance because of financial issues. Nonetheless, I was recently employed to be a private ballet instructor at a local dance company and it's an awesome job ♥ ♥ ♥


Credit is a must.

Only use my graphics on Neopets.

Never copy my original ideas like kawaii scans, icon categories or pixel themes!

Do not use anything from my site on your buttons/layout designs, except for the kawaii scans. If you use my kawaii scans on your buttons/layouts, you MUST provide a visible link-back credit to my site.

Do not edit anything that you use from my site, unless they are blank banner bases. In that case, you may only edit by adding text.

frequently asked questions

Where do you get your inspiration from?
I get inspired by things I like in real life (e.g. sugary delights, dance, etc)! Most of the time, I see something that would make a cute pixel/icon/whatever, and then make it as soon as I can ^^

What programs do you use?
I use Microsoft paint for pixels and scribbles, and then Photoshop to make them transparent and shiny. Photoshop's the way to go for buttons and icons. I tried getting GIMP once, but I found it less flexible than Photoshop

Do you use a tablet?
No :( I use my good ol' mouse.

Can you teach me how to pixel?
Haha, you have no idea how often I get this question. I do have a tutorial section on this site, so if you check that out, it may help :D

Can we be sister sites?
I used to have a wonderful twin site, Pirouette, but sadly it has closed.. so yes, I am currently looking for one!

Can I review you?
No thank you, I am not intending to be reviewed anywhere. If I need someone's opinions, I will ask them myself.

Will you join my competition?
Just drop me a neomail and I'll consider! :)

Will you make me a custom graphic?
I take requests from time to time ^^ Please see here for more information.

Have a question? Neomail me ^^

regular pixels

Remember to read the rules!

sparkle series

freshly baked

cute fruits and veggies

desserts and sweets

cute animals

bathtime buddies


Ballet related

Wish jars

sticker sheets

Stitched pixels

*This is a completely original idea; each pixel takes me ~1-2 hours to complete ^^


Remember to read the rules!


sweet treats

girly and cute


Remember to read the rules! Hover over for item descriptions.


Remember to read the rules! Also, in order to save loading time, I have not provided individual coding for these icons. To code them, right click and copy the image URL, before plugging it into the following code:

desserts and sweets



sanrio & san-x






Remember to read the rules! Drag and drop for the banners' full sizes! In order to save loading time, I have not provided individual coding for these banners. To code them, right click and copy the image URL, before plugging it into the following code:

blank banner bases

*You may only add text to these banners. Strictly no editting of banners otherwise.

hiatus banners

moved banners

closed banners


Here is a collection of kawaii buttons that I have made for some people who requested. Requests are always open, however, I am rather picky with who I decide to make buttons for. Please take a look at the portfolio below so you roughly know my style. If you decide to go ahead with the request, fill in the following form and neomail me. I will reply you once I receive your neomail whether or not your request has been accepted.

Neomail Sophia.

kawaii scans

Here are some kawaii scans of some virtual characters. Full credit goes to San-X for the characters but I cut and scanned the individual images myself ^^ As usual, please read the rules and drag and drop for the full size of each image.


nyanko kitty



Pixelling basics

Starting a pixel

Coloring tutorial

Why shade?

Pixelling basics

In this tutorial, I will be showing you the fundamentals of pixelling. Please note that I am not claiming to be the best artist out there and these techniques are not the sure way to go about pixelling. I am sharing my style with you in hopes that you discover your own!

basic shapes

Before you start pixelling, you will need to know several basic shapes that you will use recurrently while pixelling. These may look easy, but mastering them is very important.

Straight lines
Straight lines should not have kinks in them, like the ones in pink below. Diagonal lines are harder, but as long as you find that each of your lines are of the same width and number of pixel, you should be fine.

Curved lines
When you want to create a curve, make sure the curvature is gradual. For a good curve like the one on the left, the number of pixels go from 6-4-3-2-1, in decreasing order. However, if you look to the curve on the right, it is unpleasant looking and jagged, because its pixel lines go from 6-4-2-4-1.

Circles are just a continuation from curved lines. What you need to make a circle would be 4 sets of curved lines crafted in a perfectly symmetrical manner. Again, get your curved lines correct or your circle will not turn out good!

kawaii faces

It is pretty common for people to add cute little faces to their pixels. Three examples have been shown below - each pixel links to its rightful owner ^^

word of advice

Pixelling is an extremely time consuming activity, which takes a lot of hard work if you want to be good at it. Practise, practise and practise; do not be afraid to make mistakes!


Starting a pixel

This tutorial will bring you through the first part of making a pixel.

Choosing your pixel idea

Pixelling is probably a lot easier if you are making a pixel out of something you adore. In my case, and for the purpose of this tutorial, I will be pixelling a ballet slipper, something close to my heart, because I am a ballerina ^^

Once you have decided what you want to pixel, you might want to source out some graphics or real life photographs that may contain the item you want to pixel. These would serve as guides for you to decide which position, angle and design you want your pixel to take. For example, I picked out this photo:

Pixelling the outline

The first thing to do would be to outline a shape in which you want your pixel to look like. Do not worry if your pixel looks messy at this point, but keep in mind that it has to at least /look/ like what you expect the finished pixel to be. My ballet slipper outline turned out this way:

Cleaning up the outline

The next step would be to clean up the outline. Look at the following images for a more visual explanation. The main point is to remove any extra pixels such that each pixel is only surrounded by one pixel diagonally or adjacent to it.

After cleaning up the outline, check to make sure you haven't left out any parts of the pixel that needs cleaning up. Your end outline should be neat like this one:

adding details

At this point in time, you can add some more details to your pixel, like this:


Coloring tutorial

Since you now have your pixel outline, let's fill it with some colours to bring it more life ^^

first coat of colors

The first coat of colors that comes on after completing your pixel outline would be the base colors. In this case, I have chosen the base color to be blue. In order to differentiate the different parts of my pixel, I will choose different shades of blue. After filling my pixel with the basic blue colors, it looked like this:

outlining in color

After finishing up the basic colors, it is time to outline your pixel with the appropriate colors. As a guide, divide your pixel into sections according to your previous coloring. For example, for my pixel, there are 2 main parts. This means I will have 2 different outline colours - one for the ribbons and one for the slippers.

Always choose a color that is /darker/ than your section color to outline it. For example, if you colored a portion with this (), then your outline will be darker, like this () What I have as a result is this:

final touches

Once you have your base colors on, what is left would be to touch up the pixel. That means adding on shades of color to make your pixel look more attractive and give it the 3D look. You could also add some fun animation to it :) What I have as the final product is this:


Why shade?

If you take a look around, you will realize that everything that is material form consists of shades of color. This is because of the presence of light! Under different light intensities and light source directions, shadings come into play. You see that there are lighter shades of pinks and darker shades of pink on various parts of this pink balloon:

Shading in artforms

For this very reason, pixels, vectors, scribbles, or any form of art, will always look realistic if they do not just consist of solid colors but gradients of the same color (i.e. shading).

Light gradients

Some of you may still be confused as with how lighting affects shading. In this section, I hope to bring you more visual explanations. My art /always/ has the light source on the top left (personal preference!) but you can choose to place your light source - on the right, directly above the art, anywhere!

Suppose we have a main image, which is a flower in this case. As always, my light source is on the top left. (Pardon the terribly drawn sun)

Since the sun is on the top left, the parts of the flower closest to the sun should be the brightest and lightest in color, since, well, the sun is shining directly on it! This area is marked out as portion A. Since my light source is on the top left, the dividing line is diagonal. If your light source is /immediately/ to the left of the image, then your dividing line would be vertical. The further away from the light source, the darker that portion of the art would be. Therefore, looking at the following image, B would be darker than A, but C would be darker than B.

I hope this tutorial made the purpose and pattern of shading clearer!


past layouts

Version 9: Ballerina sweets - 16 March - 23 April 2012
This was the first vectored layout that was completely rendered myself. It took a while but turned out pretty good! I love the little bows that I drew on the bottom of the layout. I also received loads of nice comments about this one ^^ Pity I only used it for a month or so because I was itching for a brand new kawaii themed layout XD

Version 8: My favourite things - 1 Jan - 15 March 2012
This is the layout I created for Sugarrush's 1st birthday ^^ It's been a good first year run! This layout contained my favourite things - hence it's name. I crossed vector styles with real images. Mmmm.. cakes, flowers, dresses, rainbows, what's there not to love? :) I hope you all enjoyed the layout as much as I did.

Version 7: Sugar cupcakes - 14 July - 31 December 2011
This was the first full pixel layout that I created ^^ It turned out beautiful, however I guess my shading still needs improvements. The most fun part of the layout was pixelling the name! I used this layout for nearly half a year because I was lazy XD ...also because I was soooo proud of this particular layout ^^

Version 6: Sweet treats - 26 April - 13 July 2011
I love how this layout turned out! It was one of the larger layouts that I had and it worked beautifully :) Special thanks to Princess-peachie @ dA for the lovely custom icecream vector which added so much sweetness to the layout! The only thing I disliked was the whole boldness of it all.

Version 5: Easter negg surprise - 6 April - 26 April 2011
This was a really quirky little layout that I made for Spring/Easter :D I loved how it turned out perfectly egg-shaped even though the shape was sketched~ however, this layout was far too small and made me feel like /not/ updating the site. I decided to change it to a larger one, anyway XD

Version 4: Sweet little ballerinas - 1 March - 5 April 2011
This was my ABSOLUTE FAVOURITE layout of all times! I loved the way it turned out, the ballerina cupcakes beautifully cropped and oh that lovely font that I found online_ .) I really really really really love this layout and if I could I would reuse this layout again some day! No words can describe how well this turned out, in my opinion ^^

Version 3: Cute food! - 5 Feb - 28 Feb 2011
Wow, I had this layout for a really long time! I tried it out because I have never done a "two pieced" layout. It worked, but I forgot to add textures to the bottom piece and it looked terribly bare as a result. Did you like this layout?

Version 2: Kawaii Parade! - 17 Jan - 5 Feb 2011
I loveeee this layout. It features awwa-awwa chan from san-x :) It took me a really short time to make, and I like how it was innovative and in a bullet shape. People started copying the layout pattern after a while, and it got me kinda sad. I'm happy it inspired those people though. I had many positive comments about this layout!

Version 1: Sugary Pink! - 1 Jan - 16 Jan 2011

This was a great layout to open my site with, I love how pink and bright it was! It was a pity that I only used it for 2 weeks or so, because the main box was way too small for my liking XD



Past layouts


Gifts and fanmail



Affiliate requests are OPEN, however, I will only take affiliate requests from pixel, graphic and button request sites. Not all sites will be accepted.

TWO spots left.

Neomail Sophia.



gifts and fanmail

Over the past year or so, Sugarrush has received multiple features and shout-outs, won a couple of SOTMs and is currently ranked at multiple sites :) Sure, those are important to me, but I've decided to stop keeping track because what really keeps me going are the lovely fanmail and random gifts I receive sometimes ^^ Thank you to all who made Sugarrush become what it is like today!

Gifts I've received




All content (c) Sophia (pamperedbiscotti)

Headers from Mellie's Premades

Updates bullets from Zeal

Rules, coming soon & FAQ bullets from Hanaro

Stock images from San-X and weheartit

Mini icons, introduction CG and background editted from Ferny-dust

Special thanks to Lola for being as awesome as you already are ♥