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Making Pictures with Aqua Effect

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

Creating a brand-new icon having the familiar "aqua" effect is easier than you think – if you use 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 draw an aqua-style icon for "Add", a glass ball with a "plus" sign inside. To start, you’ll need to draw a circle of a certain color. Select 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 by using one of the Transparency presets, set your new image’s transparency. For this tutorial, the ball will be fully opaque. In the same way, you can set background color; for simplicity’s sake, we’ll keep the background transparent for now.

To make a circle of selected color, select the Filled Ellipse tool by clicking the Filled Ellipse icon 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 drawn a circle!

In order for our flat circle to start looking like a crystal ball, we’ll need to apply some special effects. There are many of those built into IconLover! You can add shadows, gradients, transparency channels, and of course, the famous ‘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 by simply selecting Aqua from the Effects menu. Keep all sliders at their defaults for now, and you’ll get a beautiful shiny sphere as a result.

Now let’s have some fun and make your icon truly unique. Go back to that Aqua dialog and have a carefull look at the properties. There are plenty of properties available to adjust, allowing you to draw something never seen before. Go ahead and move the sliders to see how your icon can look!

As a final touch, let’s add some volume to your new icon. While glowing and shiny, it still looks more like a button 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 stick to defaults, or move the settings around by getting a flat button, a lens, or a ball. The look depends on the size of the shadow, its distance from the subject, and the angle at which it falls to the surface.

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

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

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Food Icon Library Your products will look more modern and stylish with Food Icon Library. Color formats include Windows XP and 8-bit formats. Available sizes are 16x16, 24x24, 32x32, and 48x48.

Web Icon Library Your web project will appear more current and stylish with Web Icon Library. Color schemes include Windows XP and 8-bit formats. Provided sizes are 16x16, 20x20, 24x24, 32x32, and 48x48.

Network Icon Library for Vista Vista Network Icon Library is a collection of network-related icons. All the graphics are provided in two variants, with and without shadow, a variety of sizes and formats is provided.

Basic Icons for Vista Make your software look as nice as Vista with icons crafted in the same style

Medical Icons for Vista Medical Icons for Vista has been created to eliminate any misunderstanding arising while looking at a medical webpage or using a medical software. The icons are provided in numerous sizes and formats.