High Profile Software Identity Design for Macromedia FreeHand, Director & Extreme 3D including Cover Illustration, Icon Design & Splash Screen Design
- Cover Illustration and Mascot Character Design for Macromedia FreeHand
- Behind the Scenes Article - Creating FreeHand's New Identity
- Application Icon Design & Splash Screen Design for Macromedia FreeHand, Director & Extreme 3D
“The Javelin Thrower, sure to catch your eye at the software store.”
– Chuck Kraemer, The Cutting Edge, WCVB TV5 Boston
When Macromedia merged with Altsys they acquired the venerable FreeHand software which already had a large following and pre-existing identity. They wanted to integrate FreeHand into their current product line, so they turned to DreamLight to create a new cover illustration and software identity design for the software. Macromedia’s product line included the high profile Director application which sported a bold graphic figure as a mascot on its cover.
The previous version of FreeHand (Aldus FreeHand) had a loose, stylized, purple leaping man on its cover. Macromedia had created a mock-up with the purple leaping man in a layout similar to Director's cover that we could use as a starting point. We designed a new mascot character for FreeHand that retained some of the creativity of the previous FreeHand figure while also showing off FreeHand’s new advanced illustration capabilities. Thus was born the famous Javelin Thrower character design. DreamLight's Javelin Thrower character illustration is also available on merchandise from posters to T-shirts and coffee mugs.
In addition to the Javelin Thrower character, Macromedia also used one of DreamLight's Etonic running shoe FreeHand illustrations on the back of the box packaging as well as in a variety of marketing collateral material.
Michael Scaramozzino wrote an article that was published in Desktop Publishers Journal – Creating FreeHand's New Identity. The article covers various aspects of the project and includes tips and tricks that were used in the creation of the cover illustration – Javelin Thrower. The article published in Desktop Publishers Journal is based on our original DreamLight Insight, Design 101 – Creating FreeHand’s Software Identity, which includes additional content.
We used a similar approach for FreeHand's new icon design by incorporating elements of the new identity while still retaining a similarity with FreeHand’s previous icons. After the success of FreeHand’s new identity, Macromedia had us redesign all the icons for their flagship Macromedia Director as well as design a completely new set of application icons for their brand new Extreme 3D software.
- Project Type:
- Software Identity Design
- 2D Vector Illustration
- Character Design
- Icon Design
- Splash Screen Design
- Skills and Software Used:
- 2D Vector Illustration: Macromedia FreeHand
- Application Icon Design: Adobe Photoshop
- 3D Illustration: Macromedia Extreme 3D
- Client & Year: Macromedia, 1994-1995
- Exhibits & Publications:
Exhibits & Publications
DreamLight and many DreamLight projects were also featured on Macromedia's Showcase CD-ROM for years.