What You’ll Be Creating
April showers bring May flowers! It is traditionally known that April is quite a rainy period, when the weather changes unexpectedly from the sun shining in a clear sky to raining cats and dogs. However, any weather has its own beauty, so let’s get inspired and prepare for springtime with this fun tutorial! We’ll be working in Adobe Photoshop to create a set of April weather flat icons, using basic shapes and texturing with artistic brushes.
Adobe Photoshop has plenty of great tools
and tricks for creating icons in a fast and convenient way. You
can use the following techniques to create not only a weather icon set, but also
any other kind of flat icons, like travel or camping icons, nature flat icons and others.
1. Create a Colorful Rainbow Icon
We’ll start by making the outer red stripe of
our rainbow. Take the Ellipse Tool (U)
and make a 450 x 450 px circle. Head
to the Properties panel (Window > Properties) and from here
we can change the size of the shape, its position colors and other settings.
Set the thickness of the Stroke to 3 pt, Fill color to None, and let’s adjust the Stroke color. Click the Stroke icon to open the options window
with color swatches, and either select one of the swatches or click the colorful
icon in the top-right corner to open the Solid
Color window and select the color more precisely.
Let’s add another ring. Select the red
circle in the Layers panel and press Control-J to make a
copy of the layer. Press Control-T to transform
the shape and make a copy a bit smaller, placing it inside the red circle.
Switch the Stroke color to orange in
the Properties panel.
Make another copy (Control-J) to add a third circle of
a smaller size, switching the Stroke
color to yellow.
Continue adding circles, filling them with
rainbow colors. You can add all seven colors or fewer, as we don’t need to make
our rainbow super-realistic and detailed, because our icon will be quite small.
Even if you add only three or four rings of different colors, it will still resemble a
When you’re happy with the result, select
all the rings using the Move Tool (V)
and unite them into a Group (Control-G).
Head to the Layers panel and Duplicate the group by either pressing Control-J or by dragging and dropping it over the Create a New Layer icon in the bottom of the panel. This way we make a
“backup” copy in case we decide to change some details of our rainbow during
Select the first group and go to Layer > Merge Group, uniting all the
separate rings into one rasterized layer.
Now let’s take the Rectangular Marquee Tool (M), select the bottom half of the rainbow
circle and delete it.
Let’s create a couple of puffy clouds at
the tips of our rainbow. Take the Ellipse
Tool (U) and make a small blue circle at the bottom-left corner of the
rainbow. Add a few more circles, varying the size. Group (Control-G) the elements of the cloud and duplicate (Control-J) the cloud. Attach the copy to the opposite
side of the rainbow.
If you wish to change something, you can
always use our “backup” copy and adjust the appearance of the rainbow to your
liking. In my case, I’ve decided to reduce the number of stripes, this
way making them thicker.
Now let’s create the base of our icon.
Let’s make the icon round by creating a 545 x 545
px circle with the Ellipse Tool (U).
Use the Properties panel to set the Fill
color to grass-green and the Stroke
color to none.
Let’s add a trendy long shadow effect to
our icon. Make a 350 x 350 px green square
with the Rectangle Tool (U) and
rotate it 45 degrees with the Move Tool (V). Head to the Layers panel and set the Blending Mode to Multiply to make the square darker. If it looks too dark, try
lowering the Opacity a bit.
Adjust the size and the position of the
rectangle to make it fit the sides of the rainbow as shown in the screenshot
below. Place the rectangle beneath the rainbow either by dragging it down manually
in the Layers panel or by pressing Control-