When a user first comes across a new mobile app one of the first things they will notice is its icon. It’s the tiny picture that gives an intuitive graphical representation of the function the app will perform and visually explains what a user can expect from it. Icons need to work hard to communicate all of this information, especially when you consider the limited space that’s available to play with. What’s more, different operating systems all impose different specifications. This means that the quality, scale and shape of the icon may vary depending on whether it’s being viewed on a desktop computer, an iPhone, iPad or other mobile device. To cope with these demands some designers prefer to keep their icons as simple and minimalist as possible, whereas others will push the boundaries of small-scale creativity to the max. Either way, the icon design process is one that inevitably keeps designers on their toes. Here is a collection of creative iOS icon sketches plus their finished version, a behind-the-scenes sneak-peak at the first and final stages of the creative process.
Working on grid paper will enable you to make sure you’re artwork is to scale and stays within the appropriate dimensions. It’s amazing how much personality is imagined in the first sketch and then brilliantly brought to life in the completed version.