Icon design is an art unto itself. Well-designed icons are critical for websites intended to target a wide audience because icons can easily reach visual thinkers, international guests and audiences of nearly all ages and backgrounds. The most effective icons not only take the place of words, but can actually convey instructions, incite emotions and tell small stories that add meaning and character to your website. The following tips will help you design good, effective icons for your website.

Start with Simple Shapes

People are constantly seeing patterns in the world around them. They see tables as rectangles with sticks for legs, eyes shaped like footballs, and smiling mouths as upside down arcs. This is why children draw the world in terms of the most simple, most basic shapes: because their brains have identified the patterns that connect like objects to one another.

As you start drawing icons for your website, begin by drawing all objects in terms of their most simple shapes. Add details only when absolutely necessary for comprehension. As you get better at icon design, you may be able to add some details to your icons that will allow you to make your icons more attractive and decorative without slowing comprehension of the icon.

Avoid 3D Representation

3D representation will add lines to your icon, and by extension may make your icon more difficult to understand. Start by making all icons 2-dimensional. As you become more comfortable with icon design, experiment with 3-dimensional representations of certain objects on an as-needed basis. As you attempt to use 3-dimensional representation for your icon, reduce the number of details within the icon to keep the icon as simple as possible.

Few Colors, No Gradients

Fewer colors may allow the mind to quickly process what it sees. The more colors your icon has, the longer it may take for web visitors to understand what they see. Avoid gradients in your design, because gradients add many more colors to your design.

Test Your Icons

When you begin icon design, you may notice that it's difficult to determine which of your icons are most effective. Test your icons by showing them to a random sampling of people. Ask them what they believe what information that icon is trying to convey. If your audience can understand what the icon is saying right away, then your icon is effective.

For more information contact a company like X Plane