When designing an icon, there are many considerations a graphic artist must consider, such as making it understandable across cultures. Graphic designers in Los Angeles and other big cities, with a melting pot of people from around the world, must be meticulous about making icons comprehensible to everyone.
For optimal performance, elegance and simplicity is usually the desired outcome of an icon design.
There are 4 Icon design categories:
- Similar - Used most often for communicating simple concepts or actions. A curved road ahead is often represented by a curved line. ⌇
- Example - Useful for representing complex matters. For instance, an airport sign may contain an icon that is the simplified design of an airplane. ✈
- Symbolic - This is common among objects, concepts or actions that are well-known, common, or established. Everyone knows that a circle with short lines extending outward is symbolic of the sun; even children know that as evidenced in their drawings. ☼
- Arbitrary - These types of icons usually have no resemblance of what they represent but rather have been learned. The biohazard sign is a great example. ☣