Fela Kuti

A Fela Kuti inspired heron.


Palette This is just an idea for hardy wallpaper, not a theme. The bird is made up with the traditional Ubuntu colors, the background could be anything.

Concept Art



Attach File


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This work is licensed under a http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/ Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.


  • The second version is 1680x1050, removed the oval-shadow-blur, and scaled down the bird a bit to fit more of it in. 10/13
  • Great, this should be the main hardy wallpaper -- George12
  • I agree with George12, these backgrounds are amazing! It is such an elegant design and adds more color to Ubuntu. This is my first pick for a new Ubuntu wallpaper. -- Lmessenger 2007-11-27 01:15:11

  • While I don't see it being a main theme, it is definetly the most beautiful available yet... I think its too involved, the average user wants an undistracting wallpaper However, I would pay good money for a shirt of this. Seriously.
  • WOW! Extremely original, ubuntu-ish, and sets apart from other wallpapers. Maybe if you would remove the semi-transparent Ubuntu logo from it, it would look more consistent. The logo looks a bit out of place there. Or, since the wallpapers usually don't include the codename animal, you should experiment with some random shapes and swirls and stuff in that style. Love your work.
  • I could not agree more strongly that this is an incredible entry. Its hip, current, unique, thematic, and hints at a sense of craft that really defines the open-source movement. Absolutely beautiful work. Compelling, non-corporate but still polished enough to look 'professional', and just what Ubuntu needs right now. EDIT: Lets pretend this image is the 'old iPod commercials' with the solid-color backdrops behind the silhouettes. What this image could use is a little more texture to the background, akin to newer iPod commercials. I'm thinking an organic-looking texture in contrast to the vector art style of the main image EDIT2: I think this would be an excellent match to ../TooHuman -Sumit

  • -- TroySobotka 2008-02-02 08:10:40 - I find this to be a deft application of artistic merit. It is contemporary in its technique and stylized in its execution. I would love to see it fleshed out into a larger design instead of the rather constrained element it currently is. The composition is refreshing in our rather depleted world of centre-punch compositional ignorance. If I could make one request it would be to 'go nuts' with the design and push it into a fully fleshed out example of contemporary design. Ignore the default worries and let it become what it should. Gut the tacky branding however -- it is far above that.

  • -AshCogs - I appreciate all the comments, compliments, and suggestions, thank you. I just thought I'd mention that the elements are avail as an svg file which can be opened in inkscape and edited. The background can be changed or deleted, Things can be repositioned, the colors and shapes on the bird can change, dropshadows deleted etc. If you select all and continuously Ungroup, it all breaks down into individual shapes to mess with. EDIT: I researched the CC licensing and have posted it above (03/04/08).

  • -xl_cheese - I like the idea of using a transparent version so the user can customize the base color via the Appearance manager. The horizontal and vertical gradient options also work well with the idea.
  • I really like this one. It's a heron bird, which makes sense(rather than random abstract art), and it is made up with the traditional Ubuntu colors (keeping the Ubuntu style - nice). I also like the remixes. This could work well as default wallpaper for 8.04. ~MadsRH 2008|02|23|
  • I uploaded the bird itself as an SVG, no shadow, no background. -AshCogs

  • With regards to the image in Alpha 4, I like the use of the heron image but think that overall the wallpaper is too "visually busy". There are, in my humble opinion, too many colors, curves, and contrasts in brightness. I doubt I would ever use it because I find it to be too distracting. -- JohnKarahalis

  • For inspiration, take a look at the Design Manual for the Abel Prize: which is very similar to the technique used for this heron.


  • -- TroySobotka 2008-02-05 04:00:27 Well I couldn't resist a mild remix of it. It truly is a wonderful piece of work, although I acknowledge the avoidance of a literal interpretation of the release code name in Ubuntu. That said, I couldn't help myself. A very quick proof of principle.

  • -- TroySobotka 2008-03-09 05:03:08 More polishing in the limited time I have. Changes:

    • Shifted red portions to alternate areas in an attempt to defer the slaughtered bird blood complaints.
    • Altered the basic forms to unionize the mini people that compose the work. Their heads are now attached in the proper areas.
    • Minor softening of the images to pull it a small amount towards dreamy.
    • Adjusted composition on the background elements.
    • Increased opacity of the basic heron from earlier incarnations.
    • Polished the vignette.
    • Added complexity to the deep canvas. Helps to break up the banding Inkscape issue while increasing the complexity.

      preview-polish.png source.tar.bz2 widescreen1680x1050render.tar.bz2

    • Nice idea Troy! Why not just the background? --AndreRuediger

      • kuti_heron_background_only.png

        -- TroySobotka 2008-02-05 21:03:47 I thought about it. The main issue is that the heron is rather hammered home in its current incarnation. It would be nice to 'nerf' it slightly and keep the dynamic nature of a mixed background as opposed to the empty vacuum. I strongly suspect this would involve delving into a different palette, as the nature of the logo colours are rather overly saturated. The pastel mauve works extremely well in the original -- I can only expect that a palette evolved around that tonal range would help. Otherwise we are stuck with opacity to lighten the predominant heron. I assume this is what you mean with the 'Why not just the background?' question. Losing the heron altogether seems sub optimal. Just a guess...

-- Tabe_2 2008-02-05 18:56:10 I love trasnlucent backgrounds because I'm not limitated to a fixed colour background and I can fit my background nevertheless the colors I choose for my theme.

  • -- osteenbergen

    -- sumitAgarwal - Here I simply took the source SVG, deleted the background, and converted all the linework to grayscale. Thus the wallpaper truly assumes the user's desktop choice of color (to stereotype: pink for your daughter, black for your son, and blue for the office?). This is great for those of us who don't believe in the tyranny of black/brown Wink ;) (in my own Ubuntu install I avoid those colors because color theory tells us warm colors advance while cool colors recede. Overall I prefer a fairly color-neutral environment). This also has the added benefit of making the desktop inherently look less 'busy', regardless of the chosen color. And, of course, as an SVG is retains all that resolution-independent goodness. Perhaps not this specific remix, but I do believe that the default wallpaper should be a color-neutral SVG like this (though the default desktop color should still be brown), keeping the colored SVG's as alternates and for the GDM. This would help respect users' color preferences while maintaining a standard 'Ubuntu' look.

Attachment List

  • [get | view] (2008-03-06 21:41:31, 160.8 KB) [[attachment:Basic_Heron.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2007-12-21 16:49:19, 349.0 KB) [[attachment:Screenshot.png]]
  • [get | view] (2007-12-21 16:48:46, 58.8 KB) [[attachment:Screenshot_thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-03-15 19:57:45, 63.9 KB) [[attachment:color-grey-translucent-gdm-theme.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-03-15 19:48:53, 805.9 KB) [[attachment:color-grey-translucent.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2007-10-13 18:54:32, 27.4 KB) [[attachment:kuti2_thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2007-10-12 22:40:42, 214.9 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2007-12-21 03:45:15, 269.8 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron1280x800.png]]
  • [get | view] (2007-10-13 18:55:39, 214.4 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron2.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2008-02-05 16:41:48, 73.6 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron_background_only.png]]
  • [get | view] (2007-12-21 03:44:38, 45.5 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron_blk_thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-02-05 18:21:21, 232.3 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron_translucent.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2008-02-05 18:30:18, 36.7 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron_translucent_screenshot.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-03-22 16:21:23, 318.6 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron_uncolored.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2008-03-22 16:37:27, 93.9 KB) [[attachment:kuti_heron_uncolored_thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2007-10-12 22:40:28, 41.3 KB) [[attachment:kuti_thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-03-09 05:05:08, 104.8 KB) [[attachment:preview-polish.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-02-05 04:10:08, 88.6 KB) [[attachment:preview.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-02-05 04:10:47, 317.0 KB) [[attachment:source.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2008-03-09 05:05:36, 305.5 KB) [[attachment:source.tar.bz2]]
  • [get | view] (2008-03-09 05:06:18, 988.1 KB) [[attachment:widescreen1680x1050render.tar.bz2]]


Artwork/Incoming/Hardy/Alternate/Fela_Kuti (last edited 2008-08-06 17:00:46 by localhost)