Tuesday, August 9, 2005

Swilly the Pig

Ryan Paul and I have been working on Swil graphics.

  1. The original SWL logo
  2. Ryan Paul's excellent shaded version.
  3. A vector rendition.
  4. A simplified graphic.

I created [1] for SWL 2. I sketched the image on a 3x5 note card and scanned it. Dan Restuccio and I processed the image in Adobe Illustrator and produced a vectorized version and filled the cells with solid colors. This appears in the SWL 2 documentation.

Ryan Paul has been studying how to use Inkscape, a powerful graphics editor for Linux, to produce high-quality, cell-shaded images. His first attempt was on his personal, lambda-penguin logo. Ryan produced [2] with this technique, applying cell shading techniques to the cells of [1]. Ryan chose to use an obnoxious yellow for the tie to fabulous effect, IMHO.

Ryan and I collected comments on the new logo. A friend of his, used the theme to produce their first Inkscape image. Although his choice of color for the pig would "cause glaucoma at twenty paces", he did get a few things right that I didn't in my sketch. For one, he made the coffee cup look like a coffee cup. Mine turned out more like a gravy saucer. He also chose white for the cup and put spots on the tie, which Ryan Paul and I thoroughly approved of. The spots, in my imagination, are bubbles from the swill. Ryan Witt thought it would look better with glasses and a pocket protector, to go with his tie-clip. My coworker, Meshaal, suggested that it wasn't abstract or simplified enough to scale to icon size or be representative as a logo. Also, Trevor Bortins suggested that, since I pointed out that the swill cup is a Java parody, I should somehow work the "steam" motif in, since that's the most prominent feature of their mark.

I recreated the logo with vectors to produce [3]. In this version, I integrated the white cup, the glasses, the yellow tie, and spots. I think I might attempt to render "steam" in the tie next time.

Rendition [4] is for Meshaal. The pig is ridiculously iconified into a largely circular composition, between the pig and the cup. This rendition doesn't have the wide support of [3], but it has its adorable merits.

I also made icons.

SWL used a snout icon extracted from the first logo. I generalized the notion of the snout abstraction, since, so all of our icons bear the theme. [1] is the decided Swil 3 icon. [2] is the Moosh icon, already in use for the Moosh Firefox extension, /moosh. [4] is Ryan Paul's idea for the Moot icon. The yin yang motif conveys the sense of disperate people interacting to produce a cohesive whole. [5] and [6] were my original attempts to convey a "meeting" of cow snouts and a diff of a cow snout. We're running with the yin yang, but I'm still trying to find an idea for the icon that is less tenuous than these.

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