- Initially I sketched out the GUI, including icon ideas on graph paper.
- I mocked up a basic layout in Fireworks to find a basic look and feel including colours.
- Then I translated the rough design in to a basic stylesheet. This was a quick and dirty process so far.
- As the application grew I used Smarty templates for developing any new UIs that needed to be implemented.
- Designing and coding these “as needed” closely with the backend team really made our workflow extremely flexible.
Then onward with the slightly more “artistic” side…
- Next was completing vector versions of each approved icon. In total we needed about 15 unique icons.
- Finally extra polish was given to the theme using background textures and gradients.
- After completing the base theme I went on to make a few other colour-scheme variations of it.
- The nature of this complex intranet app makes it difficult to showcase, but expect screenshots to be posted soon.
Most of the icons were modelled in Maya and vector rendered, but the last few I’ve been faking the 3D look directly in Illustrator. The new 3D effect in Illustrator CS is actually pretty fun, although it really wasn’t very useful for many of these. I’ve also had to retrace much of the line art since the Maya Vector Renderer didn’t really give me the cleanest lines. Another solution could have been using Mental Ray’s PostScript output.
Sorry for the delays, but samples of the icons and GUI will be reposted soon…