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09 July 2010 @ 09:50 pm
icon 101 :D  

: This is just a few suggestions on iconing. It is not a tutorial,
neither do I believe this is how icons SHOULD be done. I'm just sharing
a few things I do. if you want a tutorial in how to actually do these
things, let me know!:3

01. coloring
coloring is crucial to any coloring. bad coloring=bad icon. :(

~using textures  to color~

using gradient textures like this one on SOFT LIGHT is a great way to add
color to pictures without having to use selective coloring. you can always
touch up the colors with selective coloring if there is something you don't
like about the effect. sometimes your blacks will lose intensity and
contrast is reduced, so you'll probably have to play with levels a bit.
textures with brown, orange, red, and pink hues come in quite useful.

~curves is your best friend~

using curves to instantly brighten up your image is a good idea. unless
your image has a fair amount of lighting, chances are you won't need it.
i find myself using this 90% of the time though. some people don't
lighten up their images enough or lighten them too much. see how dull
the first picture looks in comparison to the second one? if you use an image
with not enough lighting, chances are you end product will look dull and
boring as well. in contrast, if  you pull a yesung and you lighten it too
much until your subject is full of big white patches, it becomes
overwhelming and also unattractive.

~using photo filter to work with red images~

you will always run into an irritating, really red or really yellow image.
a good start at neutralizing the colors more is using a photo filter. here, i
took a picture of sungmin, brightened it up with curves, and used a
cooling filter (82) at 20% density. sungmin's skintone now looks much
more natural. on some images, photo filter might not be enough to fix
the image's redness-you might have to combine it with selective color
and some color fill layers. likewise, if your image is too dull or blue,
a good way to fix it is by using a warming filter and and orange or red
color fill layer/texture on soft light.

bouncing off our last image, a good way to add more depth to your icons is by
creating a new layer, filling it with black, and coloring the parts you want
more defined with white with a soft brush-then set the layer to soft light.

honestly, b&w coloring just consists of a black and white gradient overlay
layer, and tweaking with curves and levels. there are many ways to do b&w
coloring. it looks simple and limited, but there are more ways to do it than
you think-here's another style of b&w/monochrome coloring:

and another I used for a lims:

it is, however, really easy to use textures on b&w images more so than
colored ones. :D I find them really fun to make.

~keep it natural.~
I don't have an example for this one, but by natural i mean, don't
make someone's skin purple, or someone's hair blue, or go crazy
with the saturation tool. the key to iconing people is to mess with
the colors enough to make it look interesting but not enough to
make them look like anything other than human or like a
rainbow puked all over them. just avoid being too extreme and
find a balance :D it is ok to experiment with different colors.

02. techs

~negative space~

who says your subject has to take up the whole icon space? i
usually do this from the top, but your negative space can be on any
side you prefer. the way i do this is by resizing my already colored
icon to a smaller size, then going to edit>canvas size, and editing
the canvas size to 100x100 pixels again. after that, you can either
erase the background and replace it, or you can smudge and blur the
current one so it covers the rest of the area. negative space gives
you more room for textures and text.

~close crops~

but what if you want your subject to take up all or most of the
icon space?that's ok too! close crops are really fun to color and
as you may have already noticed, it is my favorite kind of crop.
don't be a afraid to zoom in sometimes  ♥ zooooooooooooooooooooom~

~get creative with your crops!~

many people think these types of crops are weird-but if you feel
a little more adventurous, don't be afraid to crop someone's eye
out, or crop off someone's head and leave the body as your subject.
the things you must consider in these types of crops is what you
want to emphasize or focus on. on the first, I wanted to bring more
emphasis to siwon's piercing gaze. on the second, it was sungmin's
chest (was it? i don't remember anymore.) and in the third, i wanted
to focus on the anchovy and clown fish on donghae's head
(eunhae shippers?)-it gives a little more artistic and creative touch
to your icons.


bbs, it can make or break your icon. i'm quite bad at it so i usually
just use text textures and just rarely overall. this is why i make
textless versions aside from ones with texts of my icons. ^^;
a tip for fonts you should use for icons: keep it SIMPLE.
overdone fonts can be distracting and put more emphasis on the
text itself than the actual subject. fonts like arial, georgia, courier
new, and handwritten-looking simple fonts are really good for
icons. fancier fonts are better suited for banners or larger graphics.
there are many ways to decorate your text, but that'll be a tutorial for
another occasion, but i can offer a few tips:

1. don't use colors that clash with the ones in your icon. most of the
time, choosing a color lighter than your background color works.
If it is unreadable due to a very light background, go darker than
the background color.

2. you don't have to stick with one color-try using two, maybe :3

3. try different sizes as well, as well as experimenting with bold, italics,
and uppercase-lowercase .

4. only use BLACK text on your icon if your background is WHITE
and your icon is in black and white.using black on a color other than white
is just distracting and contrasts too much. for this reason, the primary color
to use on colored pics is white. it is more subtle and blends in more.
colored images is


textures come in a wide variety of ways. they can be a colored
background. they can be text. they can be shapes to change your
icon. they can be objects you can put into your icon-and they can
also make it or break it. i rarely use textures in my icons, and when
i do, i keep it dead simple. less is more in my opinion. i realize there
are people that like to use tons of textures on their icons, but i don't.
be as simple as you like, it can add a very nice touch to your icons
if used right. but!try to make it fit and not look ridiculous. D:

always try something new!there is always something you can do
to an image, unless it's terrible like yesung's selcas. don't stick to
just one .psd-the fun is actually coloring the image yourself
using different methods.

awesome resources:

texturize  100x100textures   dafont.com

☆ jessicasuperjesster on July 10th, 2010 02:32 am (UTC)
aww D8 find something else to eat!
nudepinknudepink on July 10th, 2010 02:40 am (UTC)
/eats soup
☆ jessicasuperjesster on July 11th, 2010 05:09 am (UTC)
and hurray for random convos! about food! 8D
nudepinknudepink on July 11th, 2010 09:01 pm (UTC)
:D LOL ikr?