I got into pixel art because it was one of the most accessible mediums for me! I can have a hard time parsing visual information on digital screens, which can make digital art difficult. I fell in love with the specific techniques of the medium, and got into game development much later! I've dabbled with MS Paint since I was little, but have been seriously approaching pixel art for around 4 years now, and game development for almost 2 years.
I use FireAlpaca for most of my pixel art illustrations (you can download it here) and Photoshop CS5 to animate. FireAlpaca is a painting program similar to PaintTool SAI. I use it because out of habit and out of admiration for its simple interface. I don't really recommend it specifically for pixel art as the colour picker can be finicky. You can use any drawing program to make pixel art! Just turn off anti-aliasing. If you want programs specifically for pixel art, I recommend Aesprite, Pyxel Edit, or GraphicsGale.
I have a compilation of random pixel art tutorials here!
Personal Use/ Educational Purposes
I'm 100% in support of anyone using my artwork or colour palettes in order to learn more about pixel art! Studying other artists is a great way to improve. If you end up copying anything, I just ask that you credit me.
I'm also okay with people using my artwork for profile pictures/avatars/banners/etc, but again, credit is required.
I am okay with reposting content outside of places like Newgrounds. I do need to be credited somewhere in the actual post, replies don't get as much visibility. However, it is always preferred that the original or link to the original artwork is shared! Especially if it's a recent post.
I reserve the right to require that the poster take down a repost under any circumstance.
Reproducing my work through another medium (perler art, embroidery, painting, whatever) is totally fine, again, I just ask that credit be provided
Reproducing my work or distributing it in a way to gain profit will not be tolerated. If you see someone else doing so, I ask that you report it to me through Newgrounds or my twitter.