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Iconography’s wide range and importance in storytelling leads back millennia – In my last post for the Open Studio blog entitled “The Open Icon” I praised the flexibility of our established and ever-growing Red Hat icon library.

For The 2018 Red Hat Summit, my team and I focused primarily on telling the product-driven story and evolution of tech. These types of narratives are direct, factual, and seldom abstract, especially when they are being delivered to a wide audience.

When it came down to making design choices to represent the information being presented, our wonderful and flexible 2-dimensional icon set may have worked—but we were inspired to push things further.  

Enter isometry, the beautiful process of creating something seemingly 3-dimensional in a 2d space. Because our story was literal, our icons had to follow suit. Working closely with my teammates, we created a list of key technology items we needed to use. Server racks, blades, KVM, chips, and mainframes were only some of the many icons that were redesigned and given new purpose.

With isometric icons, there may not be as much flexibility in the interpretation of what they represent, but the intent was just that—to deliver something clear and direct in a visually appealing way.

Building environments and iconography in an isometric space was new to me before this year’s Summit, and although the possibilities are endless, oftentimes the most literal approach is the most effective.


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