Over the years I’ve enjoyed a great relationship with the folks over at Xtralean Software, and it all began with an icon for a little program named ImageWell. I went digging through my archives recently and found a couple of ‘alternate’ versions of the final design (inset, left).
While they’re nowhere near the style (or quality for that matter) of the finished product, I thought they were interesting because they took a more photorealistic approach, similar to many of the application icons in earlier versions of Mac OSX. Anyway, thought you might enjoy having a look at a few roughs that never made it out of the starting gate.
Looking at these two examples you can probably tell why I went with an illustrative approach – put simply, the selection of (appropriate) ‘wishing well’ photos at the time of the project was downright awful. The one on the left looks like something out of a LEGO™ playset, and the version the right is just plain dreary. I certainly didn’t want to depress anyone while they edited & uploaded their photos.
Ironically, a short time after I had completed the job for Xtralean, I moved into a neighborhood with a house that had an absolutely *perfect*-looking wishing well in the backyard. It literally resembles a true-life version of the final IW icon.
Which does me a lot of good now.