A New Icon Theme for Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex 8.10

This is a wiki page for the art team and who else to show off different icon designs as suggestions for the default icons in Intrepid.

I have discussed the state of the look of Ubuntu with Mark Shuttleworth, and he suggested using the following procedure.

Use the art team to develop wiki's displaying unified work towards three areas: 1) Fonts, 2) Icons, and 3) the Theme.

We will list several options on the wiki, along with guidelines. We will then discuss the options, narrowing them down to a few choices. These wiki pages will be used

to then show Shuttleworth the Art Team's work at the next Community Council.


As per Mark Shuttleworth's suggestion, you will create a folder icon showing how you think the icons should be redesigned.

1) It has to still be orange/brown.

2) Make it unique; Mark wants us to retain our identity. Therefore, start with the current Human folder and work from there.

3) Create the icon as a scalable icon, and make it available in editable formats.

4) Try to include a palette and concept art as well.

Patrick Niklaus



Fullsize Scalable Image by Patrick Niklaus

Concept Art


Fullsize Image by Patrick Niklaus


Fullsize Image by Patrick Niklaus


More ideas and images:

Ryan Henningsen

Concept Art


Fullsize Image by Ryan Henningsen

2008-07-30 -- I added three more mockup icons.

New Human Icon Theme

Patrick and I have been working together designing a new icon set for Ubuntu. The icons are styled in a tango fashion and the color palette is consistent with the defining Orange and Brown colors of Ubuntu. We have roughly 30 icons completed. Below is a small teaser.


Fullsize Image by Patrick Niklaus & Ryan Henningsen

And here is a working screenshot of the new Human Icons with the default Human GTK theme.


Fullsize Image by Patrick Niklaus & Ryan Henningsen

Subtle Human

I would like to propose a new direction, rather than an actual theme. Here are my ideas:

Go for subtle and let go of the highly-saturated palette. We want to do something modern as the next step of evolution for Ubuntu's aesthetics. In my opinion, the most logical step to do this is to make a more mature palette comprised of subdued colors.

Saturated colors should be simply accent colors, and not the dominant color (as with the current Human icon theme).

If we only go with the same colors and the same outline style, we will be merely making an iteration of the current theme's idea. We want to go to the next step forward, not sideways.

Here is my concept (sample icon + a sample minimal color palette):


Fullsize Image by Rico Sta Cruz


I've seen this in the attachment lists, but not listed in the article. Added this here as I think it deserves some attention. -- rico-ambiescent 2008-09-07 17:44:51


Fullsize Image

A copy of Troy concept (svg)


Fullsize Image

Example Concept Section


Concept Art

Fullsize Image by Lassegul




Attach File


  • For images, use a low resolution picture in the wiki page. It should be no taller than 240 pixels. If you need to upload higher resolutions, please upload them as an attachment and link to them from the page.
  • Use @SIG@ to leave your signature at the end of your comment. New comments should be placed at the bottom of the feedback.


  • Looking forward to your work. -- Acelin 2008-07-06 16:48:10

  • I think we should look to gnome-icon-theme which is based on Tango and licensed under the GPL for many of our icons. They have the most complete set of icons. From there we can brand them as our our with a different color palette and changing and improving the overall style of the gnome-icons. (Did this comment work?) -- Ryan Henningsen 2008-07-29 21:49:52

  • I've added three more icons to my mockup set. Feel free to critic my work as you see fit, everyone! -- Ryan Henningsen 2008-07-30 21:23:05

  • I like it. The one thing I would add is that the trash bin would be neat if it changed states; empty if there's nothing in there, one-two pieces of junk for 1-5 files, five for 6-10 files, seven for 11-20, overflowing 20+.
    • From Patrick's perspective, that would be difficult to do at lower icon resolutions. The point of an icon is to quickly and as intuitively as possible convey a meaning. Such as open, edit, delete, etc. That being said, icons should distinguish themselves from each other so that you can look at one and immediately think, "Oh that trash can is empty, or that trash can is full." It may be possible to implement what you said with a more translucent icon, but as is, "Empty" and "Full" are accurate enough depictions of what their meanings are. -- Ryan Henningsen 2008-07-31 11:05:40

  • I really like your work and especially the fact that it's based on Tango/Tangerine. Keep up the good work. I hope that your theme could replace the current human one in 8.10, especially the folder icons. They will match my gtk theme - New Wave. -- AntonKerezov 2024-07-15 23:47:50

  • I added a new concept (Subtle Human). I'd really appreciate some honest feedback on this. -- rico-ambiescent 2008-09-07 17:29:36

Attachment List

  • [get | view] (2008-09-07 17:19:32, 28.8 KB) [[attachment:beigefolder.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-08-08 07:49:02, 176.0 KB) [[attachment:new-showcase.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-07-25 15:12:23, 28.6 KB) [[attachment:pn_folder_overview.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-07-25 15:13:05, 9.5 KB) [[attachment:pn_folder_overview_thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-07-11 14:59:38, 34.1 KB) [[attachment:pn_palette.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2008-07-11 14:59:13, 14.3 KB) [[attachment:pn_palette_thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-07-25 15:11:10, 29.5 KB) [[attachment:pn_preview.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-08-08 07:48:27, 48.7 KB) [[attachment:screenshot1.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-07-31 02:24:53, 32.9 KB) [[attachment:showcase-20080730.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-09-21 22:38:06, 16.0 KB) [[attachment:troy-copy-thumb.png]]
  • [get | view] (2008-09-21 22:36:49, 12.8 KB) [[attachment:troy-copy.svg]]
  • [get | view] (2008-09-07 17:42:24, 9.1 KB) [[attachment:troyfoldericon-preview.jpg]]
  • [get | view] (2008-07-08 17:40:35, 94.1 KB) [[attachment:troyfoldericon.png]]
 All files | Selected Files: delete move to page


Artwork/Incoming/Intrepid/Intrepid_Ibex_Icons_-_Art_Team (last edited 2008-09-21 22:50:00 by ANancy-155-1-52-16)