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January 16 2014

11:00

Brandnew App for Mac OS: 2,800 Free Icons for Designers


  

The name Ivan Boyko will sound familiar to quite a few designers out there. He is the creative head behind icons8. The website by the same name offers 2,800 icons to download for free. 1,600 of them are designed following the design style of Windows 8, while the other 1,200 fit into the version 7 redesign of iOS. Today, Boyko added a way to access his icon sets even more easily. A brand-new and also free app can be downloaded from the Mac App Store. This app brings all the icons right to your desktop…

October 02 2013

13:00

Icon Talk: Choosing the Perfect Icons for Your Website

This thought might be the prevailing philosophy that hides beneath the shroud of web design: that small details sometimes happen to be the most important ones. That the things we think do not matter in our design are, in fact, necessary for the smooth flow and exchange of information.

Sometimes small things tend to have the biggest importance.

One of these small things that are commonly taken for granted are icons. Icons can be considered as a worldwide-understood element of web design. They are apprehended by most people, making the websites benefit from the addition of such. It is in this universality that icons are considered to be one of the most important design elements that have ever walked (figuratively) on the face of the earth.

iconography-02

By Kev Simpson

Icons are good tools of stamping an impression to an audience. They play a vital role in making the viewers understand what the message or the context of the website or application is.

What’s amazing about icons is that, even in their small space they occupy in the pixels of the screen, their role is immense. A lot of websites have invested a lot of effort, creativity and even money just to produce good icons that would suit the needs of their website. The ones created, in turn, reciprocate this by producing more viewers and easy to understand content. However, due to the variety of available icons, it becomes slippery to a point that designers seem to be confused. Iconography is a rather broad field because it encompasses a lot of concepts in fulfilling a lot of roles. As you all know, icons can be used for a lot of purposes, methods, occasions and motifs. Thus, the need to choose the correct and most appropriate icons is heightened.

iconography-01

By Joshua Sortino

As web designers, this lesson will make us more equipped with the ideas on how to choose the right icons.  Most website failures result in poor iconography. This all branch out and eventually lead to the effect that readers find themselves to be out of place, just seeing the website. And how could we evade that situation? Here are a few tips.

Icons should be appealing and readable

Icons should be visually appealing. They should be beautifully designed; thereby, be remembered by ordinary people. When designing or looking for icons for your website, remember that the people’s memory retains for two things: either they are beautiful enough to be remembered, or horrible enough not to be forgotten. If you prefer the former, then you should always look for beautiful icons.

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Photo from Mike Clarke

They should be universal

Choose icons that are easily understood by people. These icons should be famous enough that it would not produce confusion. Because you are dealing with imagery and its interpretations, the image that you should produce should always be universal. You need to make every person, at the very least, know what you are talking about. Make your icons be transcendent!

Example, never use a wrench, or a gear icon if you will not going to refer it as a settings link or menu. Of course, the average people, who are so used to seeing gears or wrenches for settings would think of it as a link or menu to the preferences of your website. They will get lost. Think of it as if you are making road signs. If you were the traffic sign manufacturer or installer and you happen to have made a mistake by switching signs, people might get lost, or worse, their cars might stumble with each other and your face will be all over the news.

iconography-04

By Barry Mccalvey

They should be consistent

Ever experience having a nice conversation with a friend and then suddenly, you say something that is out of context, and your friend will pose a besmirched face, with an eyebrow raised and say, “Huh?”

Well, that will happen if you don’t start adding consistency to your icons. It will result into a breakage in the flow of information, and you won’t want that to happen.

For this, you should remember to use the same color or color scheme. Adding a very consistent color theme will make the identity of your icons stable. People will see your website and remember it. Also, you should remember to use, as much as possible, the same shapes. Shapes are also very good memory tools. Third, is that you should style your icons without borders. Borders, shadows, and gradients affect the technical and aesthetic quality of the icons.

iconography-10

From cssauthor.com

It should complement with the motif

The illustrations have to look legit. They need to be visually compatible with the motif of your website. Before choosing the icons, ask yourself, how would my site look like? Will it be comical, formal, creative, flamboyant or plain? The answer to your question, should match the icons that you will use. Like fonts and colors, icons are thematic. They are occasional and prefer to be represented and used in specific occasions.

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From designyoutrust.com

They should be functional

Icons should be functional. Period. Their quality should not defeat its true purpose. Sometimes, we tend to extravaganize the design by adding unneeded icons. But you should remember to put what you need. Don’t be greedy. Less is more. Lesser is most. The more that you add, the more it becomes visually heavy. So be wise.

iconography-11

From graphicdesignjunction.com

Conclusion

The thing that you need to know in choosing icons for your web design is that you need to be understood and purposive. You have to be so universal that even a simpleton will understand you. You have to apply the purpose and try to achieve it in your design. A great web designer does not stop just because he is tired of looking for good icons. A great web designer will just stop, when he sees it in the website.

Truly, small things tend to have greater roles and those bits of facts can mean a great deal of inspiration. And I bet the icons agree.

Useful links

Any Tips to Share?

July 09 2012

16:10

45 Latest And Free Icon Sets For Your Design

In this round up, you will discover some fresh and free icon sets that you can download on your personal computer and then can use them in your design work. Icon sets are very important no matter what sort of design you are creating. Though, they are very small yet they hold great importance; and this is the reason why designers pay special attention when it comes to designing icon sets.

So, without any further ado, here we are presenting the complete list of fresh and free icon sets that you can easily use in your design work and make your work noteworthy. Click through and feel free to download.

Note: Please read the license agreement before using these icon sets for the commercial purpose.

Football Social Icon Set

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Email Icon

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Lifetime Social Network Icons

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Fresh Subtle Social Media Icon Set

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Social Media Vector Icons 2012

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Connecting Icons

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Architecture Blueprint Icon Set

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A Free 3D Silver Social Media Icon Set

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Social Icons Pack for Designers and Developers

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Ultimate Social Icon Set

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Black & White 3D Social Icons

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jDownloader Splash Screen and Menubar Wood Icons

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Black & White Minimal Social Icons Pack

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Hockey Stick Icon

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Combination padlock icon

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204 Google Plus Interface Icons

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Customer service icon

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Transformers Icons

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Creature Folders Icons

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First-Aid medical Kit Icon

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Vintage TV Icon

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Android Style Icons by Wallec

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Little Twitter birdie icon (PSD)

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Tiny Icons

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Cloud Social Icons by GraphicsVibe

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Notepad and pencil icon

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Android Style Honeycomb Icons by Wallec

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Chalkboard

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Simplycons Icon Set

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Free Media Pins Social Icons Set

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Aerial Icons by Chromatix

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TIT0 Images Become Icons

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Social Inside Icons

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Printer Icon

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Adobe Creative Suite Icons

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Folder Icons by Delacro

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Colorflow TV Folder Icons: Alphas

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FS Ubuntu Icons by franksouza183

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Twitter Icon

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Elmenetary Folders for OS X

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Rounded Square Icons

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Colossus 3G Mod

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Sale tags PSD Template

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Keyboard Keys Icons

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Alarm clock icon

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