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Author Topic: Vl6 - some icon/presentation design ideas to give VL more personality  (Read 8997 times)
blurymind
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Vectorian
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« on: February 15, 2009, 01:58:36 am »

Hi,i loved the vl6 release. It already has an awesome design,which contains all of my favorite themes. One such theme is the theme of traveling in space, science fiction:
-Vl's logo is a planet with a silver V
-VL's installer has all science fiction themed mini games
-VL's wallpaper is a picture of space (awesome work !)

now,i dont want any of this changed. It's just that yesterday i came up with a crazy idea and i wonder if its worth making it into reality.
What i want to propose is to give more meaning to the sci-fi theme that is behind VL's image.

In order to do that, I have created designs of characters that can serve as mascots for some of VL's unique tools.
These characters are sci-fi themed too,but try to relate with the functions of these tools. The drawing style is clean,simplified..I want to make it in pixel-art to look as if came out of a good old adventure game..

Vector- it can be a planet or a silver rocket/spaceship .The rocket would be a cooler idea i think, because i can relate the other characters as crewmen to it.

Vector's engine- I made a drawing of an engine ,with slackware's brand on it. Vasm the robot could be next to it.

VASM-the square headed robot - - For VASM or VASMCC i created a square-headed robot. It's name is vasm- the robot. It is in charge of maintanance of the ship.
I can make any kinds of graphics with him- in the form of an icon for vasm,or picture

Vpackager- Vpackager is an alien-like creature with 4 tentacles.It's always half-stuck inside an opened crate..The idea of it is that its tentacles are long and sticky =P

Vectorites- this is supposed to symbolise the crewmen of the ship- Vector's community. To image that,i have drawn a simple spacesuit. An icon of that on the desktop can link to VL's forum.

I will upload the sketches some time today or tommorow.

What can be done with these designs?

one is to use these characters to symbolise aspects of vector- I can make desktop icons and images for their about screens..

I can also create a short presentation- a slideshow of sorts, that has some narrative nature- Its going to feature these characters, the VL-spaceship and explain their roles. I want that slideshow to have that pixel-art kind of an old adventure style game. I am not sure where this slideshow can be used. Possible places are: VL website, or as a mini-game (easter egg) to come with the installer, or images somewhere in home, or have an icon on the desktop that launches it...I dont know, i am going to make it,if you think the idea is cool. I dont know how to code a slideshow,but i can make the slideshow pictures.


« Last Edit: February 15, 2009, 02:14:19 am by blurymind » Logged

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blurymind
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Vectorian
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Posts: 1082



« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2009, 06:47:23 am »

vasm


vpacky


a vectorite
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hata_ph
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Vectorian
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-- Just being myself --


« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2009, 07:36:40 am »

WOW.....it is fantastic....
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blurymind
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Vectorian
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Posts: 1082



« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2009, 09:00:17 am »

here is an icon for vasmCC (i will be very proud if this one makes it to vl6's desktop):

I also have the svg file (made it with inkscape)

vpackager


lint to vector's forum


i made them to suit the desktop wallpaper (try it and tell me what you think)

here is how it looks with the icons:
« Last Edit: February 15, 2009, 11:56:42 am by blurymind » Logged

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GrannyGeek
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Vectorian
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Posts: 2567


« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2009, 08:12:18 pm »

I guess I'm too old and maybe the wrong gender for this. I'm not attracted to science fiction, sci-fi games, sci-fi anything. It also has never occurred to me that VL has any kind of sci-fi theme. I don't think of the logo that way, I barely knew there were games in the GUI installer (which I don't use anyway), and the VL desktop is just visually attractive with a space theme but not rocket ships and aliens.

Nevertheless, I'm sure these sci-fi icons, etc., would appeal to some Vector users and I hope they are developed. But please don't make them defaults.
--GrannyGeek
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Happily running VL 7 Gold on  a Sempron LE-1300 desktop (2.3 GHz), 4 G RAM,  GeForce 6150 SE onboard graphics and on an HP Pavilion dv7 i7, 6 gigs, Intel 2nd Generation Integrated Graphics Controller
stretchedthin
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« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2009, 11:43:53 pm »

You've got some skills, blurymind.  It would be cool to have a collection of choices, so a user could customize the look of his/her choice.
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http://www.opensourcebistro.com/blog1
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blurymind
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Vectorian
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Posts: 1082



« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2009, 01:19:08 am »

ahh.. well, i tried. I guess older users wouldnt like icons that consist of something beyound cliche signs ,to symbolise something.
It's somewhat hard to come up with this stuff, and i'm sorry that i can't think of anything else.
I don't care if they are going to be defaults,i just wanted to put my idea into something that is visible.
And plus that- now i know how to use inkscape ! (and it pwns the gimp when it comes to pixel art/icons)

But still, a question can arise- how many of the VL users share granny's oppinion? And how many find them icons refreshing? I guess not enough.

And how about choice- the user will always have it,and will always customise their desktop.
The idea of these designs is to create a memorable first impression. Thats something very important in advertisement.

I'm just glad i waited to see if people would like them,before starting to work on any more graphics like that. I guess now i dont have to do anything  Tongue

I'll post them at http://www.inkscapestuff.org/ , where others might use them
« Last Edit: February 16, 2009, 07:11:23 am by blurymind » Logged

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StrayBit
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« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2009, 07:25:24 am »

Blurrymind:  Don't give up on it!

I'm another ancient one that doesn't understand pictorial representations in general - but I do like SciFi.

To me, some of your offerings are better able to communicate what this symbol represents - at least to me.  I would like to have the option to be able to use them.  I just don't know how as I never got into art
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blurymind
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Vectorian
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Posts: 1082



« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2009, 07:46:50 am »

Blurrymind:  Don't give up on it!

I'm another ancient one that doesn't understand pictorial representations in general - but I do like SciFi.

To me, some of your offerings are better able to communicate what this symbol represents - at least to me.  I would like to have the option to be able to use them.  I just don't know how as I never got into art
well,you can use them. =) Do whatever you like. I released their svg files and even uploaded them to my contrib folder- they can be exported to any size.

I dont get it. Its said that most geeks use linux. Every geek would love vasmy-the square headed robot =P
But yet again- most women- would not like it that much. The idea here is that it creates an impression of uniqueness-it visually puts vector linux above other distros that dont have much of a face.
To be frank,i stole this idea from pardus linux. What worked really good for those guys was that they had unique tools,but they gave their tools names and even graphics- to represent them. The tools were not some boring instruments- unanimated objects- they were represented with animals- cartoonishly drawn even. When i first saw pardus, i decided to install it when i saw a screenshot of it- the unique tools it has were there and their icons- on its desktop- shining uniquely. Thats what got me intrigued- the misterious icons,i wondered what they opened- so i browsed more to find out..and thats when i downloaded pardus and tried it,eventhough is was quite unstable at the time. You see- thats the power of design that is out of the box- its momorable. I am sure that many others were intrigued and tried it- just because of those misterious icons and applications that other distros didnt have..
Its not important what is the idea- scifi,or teddy bears..its important to have a presence,to stand out of the crowd.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2009, 07:53:48 am by blurymind » Logged

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GrannyGeek
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Vectorian
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Posts: 2567


« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2009, 02:33:55 pm »

ahh.. well, i tried. I guess older users wouldnt like icons that consist of something beyound cliche signs ,to symbolise something.
It's somewhat hard to come up with this stuff, and i'm sorry that i can't think of anything else.

I didn't intend to criticize your icons. I think they're very nicely done and definitely should be included for those who want to use them. So I do hope you'll continue.

Not all icons appeal to everyone. That's why it's nice to have choices.
--GrannyGeek
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Registered Linux User #397786

Happily running VL 7 Gold on  a Sempron LE-1300 desktop (2.3 GHz), 4 G RAM,  GeForce 6150 SE onboard graphics and on an HP Pavilion dv7 i7, 6 gigs, Intel 2nd Generation Integrated Graphics Controller
blurymind
Packager
Vectorian
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Posts: 1082



« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2009, 02:50:17 pm »

thanks grannygeek   Grin

i am starting to like inkscape too much.I never knew its true potential. It seems so good for making graphics.
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overthere
Vectorian
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Posts: 1261



« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2009, 03:27:19 pm »

Nice work...I agree you should make them available at least in the icon folder...I just was looking at the vl6 desktop and thought the vasm icon should have a blue screwdriver and a green board for better consistancy or be replaced with something
cheers
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Everything Is Relative
Masta
Global Moderator
Vectorian
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Posts: 725



« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2009, 10:14:22 pm »

Those icons look nice.  The issue that I have with them, is that they are not flexible enough. I mean they are too theme specific. They match the current VL look very nicely, but what if someone changes his/her theme? What do we use when VL comes out with a new release that has a tottally different look?
  Just a bit to keep in mind, while you are brainstorming some icon artwork. Try reaching for something that says "VL", and stays flexible with other apearances as much as possible. KDE icons say "KDE" but fit a variety of themes and apearances, right?

You're doing great by taking the challenge of icons for VL. We sure could use a set of our own.
Plus you've got inkscape figured out, we may hook up on that  Wink , because I can't get the images to render in anything other than a web browser  Embarrassed .

Toss out some more when you get them. You never know when you might have something. Oh, and I liked the box icons you did a while back for packages. Maybe start there and work that direction?
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Jack Matier
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Posts: 19


« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2011, 03:08:33 am »

Yeah yeah this thread is old but I just wanted to say I liked where you were going with this. Those icons you created themselves are stupidly great in talent, but I'm not sure if the right audience is captured.

In a nutshell, this is how I see it:
Vector Linux can be described as a fast easy to use portable system that's fun to tinker with.
The people who use Vector Linux would describe themselves as either people who enjoy simplicity and speed without the expense of configurability, flexibility and choice.

---------------------
How I got to that nutshell?
Truth be told, I don't know what audience Vector Linux is trying to appeal to, but here's this blurb right on the front page about some of the aspects VL is going for which we might be able to pick away at:
Quote
keep it simple, keep it small and let the end user decide what their operating system is going to be. What has evolved from this concept is perhaps the best little Linux operating system available anywhere. For the casual computer user you have a lightning fast desktop with graphical programs to handle your daily activities from web surfing, sending and receiving email, chatting on ICQ or IRC to running an ftp server. Power users will be pleased because all the tools are there to compile their own programs, use the system as a server or perhaps the gateway for their home or office computer network. Administrators will be equally as pleased because the small size and memory requirements of the operating system can be deployed on older machines maybe long forgotten.

... and we start picking away:
  • Keeping it Simple I think appeals to anybody wanting to get things done, which is, well, everybody. But simple also means something different to different people. In general, it implies a minimal learning curve before you can do your desired task.
  • Letting the end user decide what their OS is going to be really seems to be the stem of having SOHO, Standard, Light, Deluxe and Live CD's. You set up SOHO on fast newer systems, Standard on most systems, light on super slow systems, buy deluxe to support and test out Vector with a live CD.
  • Keeping it Small appeals to the portability aspect of Vector. This would apply for those distributing the system, which would be right now, the more technically orientated friends and family members.
  • A lightning fast desktop seems to go hand in hand with keeping it small and simple. It does appeal specifically though to people who have or are setting older systems or are keen on having their systems fly.

...and then narrowing that down a bit we get some fundamentals:
  • Simplicity: Keeping a minimal learning curve so that new users and more technical users know where to look to use the system how they want.
  • Portability/Speed: A portable system that's easy to distribute and have handy to set up on older systems.
  • Flavour Rich: Need the kitchen sick or just something light?

------------------

Concept wise, it's nice that Simplicity and Speed go hand in hand. Things that are simple generally are perceived as faster, and things that are faster are generally in the future and things in the future are often spacey. In this day and age the future is painted as either a pretty sleek landscape or the apocalypse.

In this concept, cartoons are used and cartoons aren't generally sleek and sexy like the non-apocalyptic future.  They might depict a story of the future but their style doesn't represent it - which kind of messes things up sadly. There is no cartoonist that can draw a cartoon that gets away from this problem as far as I know. The good news is there are a lot of elements that can be used from sci-fi and the future without it actually being sci-fi, does that make sense? I think it does. Some examples of elements are slick curves, strokes, simple iconic designs and stable colour palettes perhaps or I don't know. The challenge is that they can't actually imply space at all, just the elements of a crisp future. As soon as elements of space are added (planets etc) the goal of making the system flexible diminishes.

Rambles and brambles.
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