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File formats: ICO, GIF, PNG, BMP

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Making Icon Images with Aqua Effect

Drawing a fresh new image having the renowned "aqua" effect is easier than you think – if you have proper tools. You can make an icon from scratch by only using a free, small and easy icon editor.

Drawing a brand-new icon having the renowned "aqua" effect is easier than you think – if you have proper tools. To create an image from scratch, a professional, small and simple icon editor such as IconLover 5 (aha-soft.com) is all you really need.

For example, let us make an aqua-style icon to represent "Add", a glass ball with a "plus" sign inside. To start, you’ll need to draw a circle of a certain color. Pick the color from the Color properties menu. By the way, you can always memorize a color by adding it to Custom Colors; this comes very handy if you need to draw a matching set of icons.

With the Transparency bar or with one of the Transparency presets, define your new image’s opacity. For this tutorial, the ball has to be fully opaque. Similarly, you can set background color; for simplicity’s sake, we’ll keep the background transparent for now.

To make a circle of your chosen color, select the Filled Ellipse tool by clicking the Filled Ellipse button in the Tools menu, which is on the left of the drawing area. Holding your left mouse button down, move the mouse within the drawing area to draw an ellipse. The ellipse changes its size and shape as you move the mouse. To create a perfectly round circle, hold Shift while drawing. That’s it, you have just painted a circle!

To add volume and dimension to the flat circle, we’ll need to add some special effects. There are many of those built into IconLover! You can add shadows, gradients, transparency channels, and of course, the renowned ‘glass reflection’ look employed by the aqua effect.

To make an icon matching Apple’s Aqua style, you’ll need to draw a reflection and a shadow to the circle. This can be done quite easily altogether by simply selecting Aqua from the Effects menu. Just keep all sliders and values at their defaults for now, and you’ll get a beautiful shiny sphere as a result.

Now let’s add an artist’s touch and make your icon truly unique. Go back to that Aqua dialog and have a look at the properties. There are multiple values available to adjust, allowing you to design something never seen before. Go ahead and tweak the sliders to see how your icon can look!

As a final touch, let’s add some volume to your newly created icon. While glowing and shiny, it still looks like a lens rather than a crystal ball. Let’s fix that by throwing a drop-down shadow! To add a shadow effect to your icon, click "Drop shadow" from the Effects menu. You can use the defaults, or adjust the values around to get a flat button, a lens, or a ball. The effect depends on the size of the shadow, its distance from the subject, and the angle at which it falls to the ground.

To embed the ‘plus’ sign into the image, click on the Text tool icon in the left Tools menu or press "T" to open the text properties window. Make sure the "Image transparency" box is checked. This means that your text will not be transparent, only the area around it will be. Changing the "Use semi-transparency" setting assigns your text the same level of transparency your primary color has. Type "+", and you’ll get the ‘plus’ sign embedded into the ball.

That’s it! You’ve just created a crystal ball that matches the famous Aqua style! All you needed was a professional icon editor, IconLover 5, a few mouse clicks and a couple of minutes of your time. Easy!

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Download Standard Hand Icons
Basic Icons for Vista Basic Icons for Vista is a pack of smooth and professionally finished icons created/ crafted in the same manner as the original Vista icons. The icons come in two variants: with or without shadows.

Medical Icons for Vista Medical Icons for Vista has been design to eliminate any misunderstanding arising while viewing a medical Web site or operating a medical software. The images are available in numerous sizes and formats.

Money Toolbar Icons Improve your project with instantly available Money Toolbar Icons! The library of over a hundred professionally designed icons represents various currencies, payments and numerous financial concepts.

People Icons for Vista People Icons for Vista illustrate people of different jobs, groups and family status. They are crafted in Vista style and come with or without shadows. Icons are delivered in various formats and sizes.

Love Icon Set Save on development of romance Web sites and applications with ready-made Love Icon Set. The collection includes more then sixty love icons and symbols.