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Themer
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144 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Word up Rootzwiki...

This is my first post here, so i'd like to say a warm "What's up" to you all!
Amongst other thing, i create icons for android, and will most probably post them on Rootzwiki if its permitted....

In this thread i'd like to share and find out about your advice's, tips and tricks to be a stellar icon designer. Whether its for android, your computer desktop or any other devices.

Beginners or advanced creators, whats your advice's? what's on your mind...???

Tips
  1. Persistence means something in the icon design field, be ready for the long haul if you wanna leave a trace.
  2. Create nice previews of your icons, first impression counts a lot.
  3. Quality is Very important, create with the highest resolution possible.
  4. Find the thematic you want to go for, and stick with it consistently throughout the icon set.
  5. Accessibility will help you, make a simple .png pack and also explore new avenues like creating a icon pack app for the market or even be part of a theme. It will be appreciated because users have different taste.

Tricks

  1. Use Photoshop for the final render of your icons.
  2. They are plugins like EyeCandy for Photoshop that can extend manipulation beyond the realms of generic Photoshop filters.
  3. The size of icons on Android devices is 72px by 72px, but create more than one size because you'll need a big version of it sooner or later (minimum 200px by 200px) and ideally 512px by 512px.
  4. Start with a vector (I make mine with Adobe Flash, or/and Adobe illustrator) then import that vector in Photoshop, that way you'll be ready if you need to make a bigger size later, vectors are really crisp and infinite resolution.
  5. Test your icons in a phone, sometimes it looks very different than on your computer screen, often its a brightness contrast issue.
  6. Test the icons on a black and also a white background, users have various wallpapers.

Advice's

  1. There a preconception in this field that icons should be free, no matter how much work goes into them. If you intend to generate funds from them, be aware that its 1 paid icon packs per 500 free ones out-there... YOU WILL HAVE TO WORK HARD.
  2. Be original, its not easy to come up with something new, yet its not impossible. Do your research before you jump in and study the style you intend to use like its your high schools final example. its worth the effort.
  3. UPDATES, be ready for them...
  4. Listen to user requests, its your ultimate guide to what you need in the icon pack, one requested icon is worth more than 10 nobody cares about.
  5. It may be tedious, but redraw each icons yourself so that you have the best quality to start with, simply copy/pasting images is not recommended, and very hard to manipulate.
  6. Piracy is rampant in icon design, but the way i think about it is that piracy is simply a competing business. They happen to sell at the price of $0, so you can't beat them on price, but you CAN beat them on 1. convenience and 2. content (piracy takes awhile to get up to date unless you have a hugely popular pack which gets pirated within HOURS of release). As long as these two points outweigh the price difference, you'll be ok.
  7. DON'T give up! Keep trying as every endeavor faces roadblock at one point.
  8. Rule of thumb for posting your icons online: Treat people as if they were standing in front of you. Be consciously polite. Assume people's intentions are good. Remind yourself that your lucky to be alive, and grateful to be in the presence of others. Though I'm sure I've wavered from this philosophy on occasion, I'm not proud of those moments, and try to get better.

Templates
This is a Photoshop template i put together for you to study... if your new to photoshop it may help you with layer styles etc...


good advice tips tricks will be added in this list... its work in progress.
 

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Themer
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14 Posts
Your not gonna get advice from anyone better or any more hints/tricks unless someone is physically there
to guide you! Shows your character, ThaPhlash, and we all look forward to your sweet give-aways! lol

Thanks for the welcome!... could i post my icons on this forum? hows your policy regarding this?
This forum is completely open. You can go ahead and ask them but I'm sure they would love you to
post your work here...
 

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I just hide here
Joined
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2,237 Posts
ThaPHLASH said:
Thanks for the welcome!... could i post my icons on this forum? hows your policy regarding this?
ya your completely welcome to post ur icons. i would love it if u did.
 

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Themer
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144 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
friflaj said:
How do I create an installable icon pack?
If your referring to a icon pack that would come in the form of a .apk and would change all your icons in one swoop... that is not yet possible without the help of a third party app... like example ADW or another home replacement app...

of course you could make a "icon changer" app and combine it with a icon pack, that would work... but if you have many icon packs, it would be weird to download the self contained "icon changer" app every-time with every pack and it be better to have it separated.

There are many ways to think about this... and believe me i think about it all the time!
 

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Android Lover
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179 Posts
Glad this thread was tweeted by @rootzwiki I didn't realize it was 2 months old. I can't wait to get some free time with the Photoshop template posted here. I've been trying to get my head around creating effects with layers recently and it ain't clicked yet.

Thanks for sharing.
 

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Themer
Joined
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144 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
whenever you need.. ill be here to help if you have questions...

mwaters33 said:
Glad this thread was tweeted by @rootzwiki I didn't realize it was 2 months old. I can't wait to get some free time with the Photoshop template posted here. I've been trying to get my head around creating effects with layers recently and it ain't clicked yet.

Thanks for sharing.
 

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Android Beginner
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5 Posts
ThaPHLASH said:
If your referring to a icon pack that would come in the form of a .apk and would change all your icons in one swoop... that is not yet possible without the help of a third party app...
I mean an .apk like the ones that supply icons to bettercut and openhome. It looks like they're just bundled pictures, but there's something special about them that says to BetterCut to look into those for icons.
 

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Themer
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144 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
friflaj said:
I mean an .apk like the ones that supply icons to bettercut and openhome. It looks like they're just bundled pictures, but there's something special about them that says to BetterCut to look into those for icons.
Hummm... well first off.. Take note that bettercut is not on the market anymore, and probably won't come back.

Your welcome to make packs for my PhlashCut app thou, but you will have to rip it apart to understand how it works, and name your icons like mine since PhlashCut actually fetches the icons for the users so they dont have to browse thru the pack...

You will also need to rip apart one of my icon packs to see that naming structure and other codes...
 

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Android Beginner
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5 Posts
Yeah I've seen that, but as long as it works... I've tried PhlashCut, but like anycut it's activity-based -- if an app has many activities, like Contacts, it will just say "Contacts" any number of times without me being able to tell what activity will actuall be launched until I create and launch the shortcut, so it's a bit of a trial and error process. BetterCut offers me a list of applications to launch as one of the options, and also seems to load the apps list significantly faster. Not complaining about PhlashCut, just outlining why I'm still using BetterCut.

Is PhlashCut available for study so I can structure my pack correctly?
 

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Android Apprentice
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18 Posts
Great... And thought I got away from this guy when I migrated here from xda. Awesome. More gloss, emboss, Photoshop filters and most importantly, more unabashed, incessant promoting of his lackluster icon packs.

Just another merchant peddling his wares.
 

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Themer
Joined
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144 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
jefte said:
Great... And thought I got away from this guy when I migrated here from xda. Awesome. More gloss, emboss, Photoshop filters and most importantly, more unabashed, incessant promoting of his lackluster icon packs.

Just another merchant peddling his wares.
Someone forgot to take their chill pill this morning.... :grin3:
 

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Android Beginner
Joined
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5 Posts
I've also found xShortcut; not really pretty, but it does allow me to pick apps to launch. No iconpack support though.

I'm still not clear on how to create such an icon pack. Are you saying the right approach is to decompile an icon pack, substitute the pngs, and then recompile? Certainly there must be a better way than that.
 
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