What is a bead sprite?
A bead sprite is a piece of pixel art made out of fuse beads such as Hama or Perler beads. There are many brands available in different countries providing slightly different palettes. The beads are placed onto a pegboard by hand to form an image.
Once the design has been completed the beads are heated up with an iron and fuse together to form a sprite which can be removed from the board as a single piece. Particularly large sprites may be ironed in sections and then combined if it is impractical to fuse them in one go.
In my work I primarily use beads from Hama who are based in Denmark as they are easily available to me in the UK. I supplement my Hama beads with colours from other companies too including Hobbycraft, Perler and Nabbi in order to keep a good stock of colours available.
I've created a simple tutorial on how to make the ? block pictured above if you are interested in giving the hobby a try. I have pixel art designs for my sprites available too or you can just check out my completed work. Enjoy the site.