Create a Set of Flat Weather Icons

In the following tutorial you will learn how to create a set of flat weather icons in Graphic for iPhone.

For starters you will learn how to setup a simple grid and how to create a cloud shape using basic tools and vector shapes building techniques.Taking full advantage of the Snap to Grid feature and using some simple stroke techniques, you will learn to create most of the icons.

Finally, you will learn how to create a flat background, how to center it and how to add a subtle shadow to your icons.

Step 1

Start by tapping the plus button from the top-left corner of your screen to create a new document. Tap the Create Document button and then choose the Grid document style.

Focus on the right side of the Titlebar, tap that ruler icon to open the Properties panel and then tap the Canvas pane. Set both Width and Height to 600 px, select Pixels for the base unit, and be sure that the Pixel-Align Strokes feature is disabled. When this setting is enabled, stroked objects are offset slightly to ensure that the stroke is drawn aligned to the pixel grid which guarantees a crisp look.

Re-open the Properties panel and this time tap the Grid pane. Make sure that the Snap to Grid feature is enabled and keep in mind that this is where you should come whenever you wish to enable or disable the grid or the Snap to Grid. Finally, open the Grid Settings pane, enter 5 px in both Spacing boxes and 0 lines in the Subdivisions box.

Step 2

Focus on the Toolbar and notice that by default the Fill color is set to white while the Line color is set to black. Tap the Fill color well and set its color to R=74 G=196 B=237 and then tap the Line color well. Drag the Alpha slider to 0% and this will simply make your Line invisible.

Pick the Ellipse Tool, move to your canvas and create a 40 px circle - the grid and the Snap to Grid feature will ease your work.

Step 3

Replace the existing Fill color with R=225 G=200 B=0, make sure that the Ellipse Tool is still active, create a 60 px circle and place it as shown in the first image.

Replace that yellow from the Fill color with R=44 G=164 B=15, create a 30 px circle and place it as shown in the second image.

Switch to the Rectangle Tool and set the Fill color to black (R=0 G=0 B=0). Create a 60 x 20 px rectangle and place it as shown in the third image.

Step 4

Using the Move Tool, select all the shapes made so far, go to the Combine pane from the Properties panel and simply tap that Union button. You will end up with a blue, cloud shape like the one shown in the second image.

Make sure that this shape stays selected and tap and hold to open that context menu. First, tap the Copy command, and then reopen that context menu and tap the Paste command to duplicate your cloud shape. Select the copy, drag it down and place it roughly as shown in the second image.

Step 5

Return to your Toolbar, this time make sure that the Fill is invisible and then set the Line color to black (R=0 G=0 B=0).

Focus on your bottom cloud shape and pick the Ellipse Tool. Create a 40 px circle and place it as shown in the following image. Make sure that this new shape stays selected, focus on the right side of your Titlebar and tap the leftmost icon to open the Appearance panel. Move to the Effects pane and tap the existing Stroke. Drag that Width slider to 6 pt and check the Inside Alignment button

Step 6

Pick the Pen Tool or the Line Tool, create a 10 px, vertical path and place it as shown in the following image. Make sure that this new path stays selected and focus on the Effects pane. Tap the Stroke, drag the Width slider to 6 pt and don't forget to check that Round Cap button.

Step 7

Make sure that your vertical path is still selected, pick the Rotate Tool and you will notice an tiny cross icon in the center of your selection, that's the reference point. Move it in the center of your circle (simply tap in that spot) and then focus on the Tool Options pane. Set the Angle to 45 degrees and simply hit that Copy button seven times.

In the end, things should look like in the following image.

Step 8

Pick the Path Selection Tool, focus on the tool pane and activate the Add to Selection mode. Select the black shapes that make up your sun and duplicate them using the same Copy and Paste commands from that context menu. Make sure that only the copies are selected, drag them to the right as shown in the first image and then go to the Path Tools pane. Tap the Outline Stroke button and then move to the Combine pane and tap the Make button. The resulting compound path will be your first icon.

Step 9

Pick the Path Selection Tool and be sure that the Add to Selection mode is still active. Reselect the black shapes that make up your sun and go to the Path Tools pane. Tap the Outline Stroke button and then move to the Combine pane and tap the Make button.

Step 10

Select the blue, cloud shape that lies behind that sun shape and simply tap and hold to open that context menu. First, tap the Copy command, and then reopen that context menu. This time tap the Paste in Place command to easily add a copy of your selection in the same place.

Pick the Path Selection Tool and make sure that the Add to Selection mode is active. Select the cloud shape copy made a few moments ago along with the sun shape that lies behind it, go to the Combine pane and tap that Subtract button. Select the tiny, black shape highlighted in the third image and simply remove it using the X button located in the left side of your Titlebar.

Step 11

Reselect your blue cloud and focus on the Effects pane. Remove the color from the Fill and then select the Stroke. Drag the Width slider to 6 pt, tap the Inside Alignment and the Round Join buttons and then tap the color well that stands for this Stroke. Make sure that the color is set to black and drag that Alpha slider to 100%.

Step 12

Reselect that cloud icon with the black stroke, go to the Path Tools pane and tap the Outline Stroke button. Select the resulting path along with the set of shapes that make up that half of a sun and go to the Combine pane. Start by tapping the Union button and then move to the bottom of the pane and tap that Make button. The resulting compound path will be your second icon.

Step 13

Select the remaining blue icon and focus on the Effects pane. Make the Fill invisible and then select that Stroke. Set its color to black, drag the Width slider to 6 pt and then tap the Inside Alignment and the Round Join buttons. Make sure that this shape stays selected, focus on the Path Tools pane and tap the Outline Stroke button. The resulting compound path will be your third icon.
Duplicate this shape and drag the copy to the right roughly as shown in the following image.

Step 14

Return to your Toolbar, make sure that the Fill is invisible and then set the Line color to R=74 G=195 B=237. Focus on your right cloud icon and pick the Pen Tool or the Line Tool.

Create a 30 px, vertical path and place it as shown in the first image. Select this tiny, new path, focus on the Effects pane and select the Stroke. Drag Width slider to 6 pt and check the Round Cap button.

Make sure that your vertical path stays selected, go to the Properties panel and open the Geometry pane. Focus on the newly opened pane and set the rotation Angle to 25 degrees. In the end things should look like in the following image.

Step 15

Reselect your blue path, open the Appearance pane and that that Copy Style command. Using the Pen Tool, create another two vertical paths. One should be 20 px long and the other should measure 25 px.

Make sure that both shapes are selected, place them as shown in the following images and re-open the Appearance pane. Simply tap the Paste Style command to quickly apply the attributes of your original, blue path. Once you're done, select these two paths one by one and rotate them 25 degrees as you did in the previous step.

Step 16

Reselect the three, oblique paths and focus on the Path Tools pane. Tap the Outline Stroke button and then move to the Combine pane and tap that Make button.

Step 17

Make sure that your blue compound path is still selected and add a copy in the same place.

Make sure that only this copy stays selected and go to the Effects pane. Remove the color from the Fill and then select the Stroke. Set its color to R=153 G=0 B=0, drag the Width slider to 4 pt and then tap the Outside Alignment button. Make sure that this compound path stays selected, move to the Path Tools pane from the Properties panel and simply tap the Outline Stroke button.

Step 18

Select your red compound path along with the black shape that lies behind it, focus on the Combine pane and tap that Subtract button.

Step 19

Using the Move Tool, select all the shapes highlighted in the first image and focus on the Combine pane. First, tap the Union button and then move to the bottom of the pane and tap that Make button. The resulting compound path will be your fourth icon.

Step 20

Duplicate your cloud shape and select the copy. Drag it down and place it roughly as shown in the following image.

Step 21

Return to your Toolbar, make sure that the Stroke is invisible and then set the Fill color to R=74 G=186 B=237.

Focus on the bottom cloud shape and pick the Rounded Rectangle Tool. Move to the newly opened tool pane and drag that Radius slider to 3. Create a 5 x 25 px rounded rectangle and place it as shown in the first image.

Make sure that your blue, rounded rectangle is still selected and pick the Rotate Tool. Set the Angle to 45 degrees and then click that Copy button three times.

Step 22

Select your blue, rounded rectangles, go to the Combine pane from the Properties panel and tap that Union command. Duplicate the resulting shape, select the copy and place it as shown in the second image. Select both shapes made in this step and turn them into a new compound path.

Step 23

Make sure that your blue compound path is still selected and add a copy in the same place.

Select this copy and focus on the Effects pane. Remove the color from the Fill and then select the Stroke. Set its color to R=153 G=0 B=0, drag the Width slider to 4 pt and tap that Outside Alignment button. With this red shape still selected, move to the Path pane and simply tap the Outline Stroke button.

Step 24

Reselect your red compound path along with the black shape that lies behind it, focus on the Combine pane and tap the Subtract button.

Step 25

Using the Move Tool, select all the shapes highlighted in the first image and focus on the Combine pane. First, tap the Union button and then move to the bottom of the pane and tap that Make button. The resulting compound path will be your fifth icon.

Step 26

Make one final copy of your cloud shape and place it below that sun icon roughly as shown in the following image.

Step 27

Return to your Toolbar, make sure that the Stroke is invisible and then set the Fill color to R=74 G=186 B=237.

Keep your eyes on the cloud shape copy added in the previous step and pick the Rectangle Tool. Create a 15 x 5 px shape, place it as shown in the first image and make sure that it stays selected. Switch to the Pen Tool, focus on the newly opened tool pane and activate the Add Points mode. Keep focusing on your tiny, blue rectangle and add two anchor points simply by tapping in the highlighted spots.

Step 28

Keep focusing on your blue rectangle and switch to the Path Selection Tool. Select the top, left anchor point and drag it 15 px up and 15 px to the right. Move to the bottom, right anchor point and drag it 15 px down and 15 px to the left. In the end your blue shape should look like in the second image.

Make sure that it stays selected, go to the Effects pane and focus on that Stroke. Drag the Width to 6 pt, check the Round Join button and add the same color used for the Fill.

Step 29

Reselect your blue shape, focus on the Path Tools pane from the Properties panel and tap that Outline Stroke button. Make sure that the resulting shapes are selected and re-open the Properties pane. First, tap the Ungroup command and then go to the Combine pane and tap that Union button.

Step 30

Duplicate your blue shape and place the copy in the same place.

Make sure that the copy of your blue shape is selected and focus on the Effects pane. Remove the color from the Fill and then select the Stroke. Set its color to R=153 G=0 B=0, drag the Width slider to 4 pt and then tap that Outside Alignment button. Make sure that this red shape stays selected, move to the Path Tools pane and simply tap that Outline Stroke button.

Step 31

Reselect your red compound path along with the black shape that lies behind it, go to the Combine pane and tap that Subtract button.

Step 32

Using the Move Tool, select all the shapes highlighted in the first image and go to the Combine pane. First, tap the Union button and then move to the bottom of the pane and tap that Make button. The resulting compound path will be your final icon.

Step 33

Using the Rectangle Tool, create a 600 x 740 px shape and set its Fill color to R=74 G=196 B=237. Make sure that this new rectangle stays selected, open the Properties panel and go to the Align pane. Simply tap the Horizontal  and  Vertical buttons to quickly center your rectangle.

Now, you need to send your blue rectangle in the back, behind all your icons. Make sure that it's still selected, open the Properties pane, go to the Arrange pane and simply drag that slider to the left.

Step 34

Pick the Path Selection Tool and make sure that the Add to Selection mode is active. Select all your icons and replace the existing Fill color with white (R=255 G=255 B=255).

Step 35

Make sure that all your icons are still selected, keep focusing on the Effects pane and simply check the box that stands for the existing Drop Shadow effect to activate it.

Enter 2 pt in the Y box and 0 in the other two boxes and then tap the color well that stands for your effect. Make sure that the color is set to black (R=0 G=0 B=0) and drag that Alpha slider to 50%. Return to the Effects pane and tap the cogwheel icon that stands for your Drop Shado effect. Tap Blend Mode and then select Soft Light from that list.

Finished Design

Congratulations, you've finished the tutorial!

Hope you've enjoyed learning some of the techniques and processes presented in these steps. As always, feel free to adjust the final design and make it your own.

Graphic File: weathericons.idraw