Pencil Icon - Affinity Designer


Pencil logo/icon originally sketched in a sketchbook and then redrawn using Sketchbook Pro on a Nexus 7 tablet. This version is the latest rebuild using Affinity Designer on a SurfaceBook. *This is a raster version of the vector design. The server won't allow vector files to be uploaded for display on the site.

While working on a different project, some time was taken to redesign this icon in Affinity Designer. The previous version was created using Sketchbook Pro on a Nexus 7 after attempts to design it in Sketchbook Ink didn't quite work out. Although the Sketchbook Pro version is very clean and looks nearly identical to the vector version, it's still a raster image which will eventually cause loss of quality problems if the image needs to be drastically scaled. The Sketchbook Ink version didn't work because the app doesn't allow output in vector formats. Also, the tools in Sketchbook Ink can be quite limited. Even though it's possible to design such an icon using Sketchbook Ink, it would have been much harder to do while maintaining the same level of quality presented here.


The pencil icon is a design that has been popular for awhile. It's not hard to find many versions of it after a quick Google search. I wanted to add my version of it to the mix but with much bolder lines and a funkier look. Another benefit I've found in creating vector graphics like this, the designs can be used as custom icons for Android devices that have launchers that allow deep customization.


Sample Pixel 2XL screen featuring custom wallpaper and icons. The wallpaper was created using Blender on a Surface Studio. Two of the icons (first and last in the row) are Affinity Designer creations that are featured on this site. The other icons are Monster Hunter theme pack icons.

Using the original vector graphics as icons through the launcher wasn't possible as Android rejects them be it .svg or .eps files. But converting those graphics to .png files with no background does work. This is only one use case out of many for custom vector graphics or any designs really. It's very important to be able to see your work functioning in an environment as a reminder that the work IS viable regardless of naysayers or the negatives. Sometimes it's difficult because inspiration can call at any time but it can be a total downer when very few within one's vicinity understands where the artist is coming from or doesn't understand what the artist is talking about when discussing creative process. It's even worse, when an artist's work is judged as being not good enough but the online samples of the firm judging the work clearly aren't as good as the artist in question. During these times, artists should create more, not less. It behooves creatives to learn to self sustain the desire to push forward. In other words, it's not always a good idea to depend on other people or an environment to provide the push to move forward. Jealousy, envy, pettiness, fear, various isms are too common. It's golden when meeting others that understand, but personally, those times have been too few and far between to become an expectation.


Yes, push on, keep experimenting, keep trying new things and new ideas and new processes. It's the only realistic way to reach the next plateau.