QuarkVSInDesign.com Archive

The Following is Archived and Preserved from QuarkVSInDesign.com, 2003–2009.

Download CS3 Replacement Icons

From 29 January 2007 through 23 April 2007, the Quark VS InDesign.com Design Your Own Creative Suite 3 Icons Competition accepted entries of designs for alterate CS3 application icons from designers and illustrators around the world. All the icon designs we received have been collected and converted to Mac- and Windows-friendly PNG and multi-size ICO files, and are below, free to download. Enjoy them on your computer, compliments of the contest entrants, content prize furnishers, and Quark VS InDesign.com.

Icons by Kimberly Smith

First Place Winner
Designed by: Kimberly Smith | United States

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Kimberly Smith’s object-oriented graphics are instantly identifiable to the applications they represent. Although visually complex, they scale surprisingly well to even the smallest of the typical icon sizes, 16×16 pixels. I would like to have seen the Dreamweaver icon designed to fit the purpose of the Web design application instead of its name, but the image is nice regardless. My only other complaint is with the InDesign icon. In the background of the lightbox something has clearly been erased or painted over, leaving harsh white stripes when the icon is viewed at larger sizes. Given that InDesign handles text more than imagery, I would also have liked to see a representation of type amidst the lightbox and slides.

Icons by Danny Dioguardi

Second Place Winner
Designed by: Danny Dioguardi | Canada

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Danny Dioguardi’s evolution of symbols from an homage to previous versions through new symbols are beautifully original, immediately identify the applications they describe, and certainly meet the coolness factor. I’m so excited by these designs that I’m profoundly saddened by the fact that Danny only made these three. I would love to see the theme carried through the rest of the CS3-version applications.

Icons by Vito Zgonik

Third Place Winner
Designed by: Vito Zgonik | United Kingdom

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
I’m a fan of this set of nine icons from Vito Zgonik. They hold true to Adobe’s CS3 branding scheme by using color-coded squares and two-letter identifiers for applications, but return the symbols and functional communication lacking in Adobe’s icons. Vito elegantly incorporated the symbols as subtle background patterns where others might have been tempted to add louder elements to compete with the central letters. Two things prevented this set of icons from scoring higher in the competition: First, the styled F Flash icon broke ranks and retreated into past Macromedia branding instead of holding a cohesive aesthetic. Second, the symbols Vito used in some of the background patterns didn’t make sense. For instance, grass brushes are used to represent FreeHand and Photoshop. I could understand such a symbol applied to the vector illustration application FreeHand or to Photoshop, which contains the grass brush patterns themselves, but by employing grass for both application icons, it weakened the result for both and looks almost as if the artist ran out of ideas by the time he got around to designing the latter of the two. Despite its relatively minor flaws, the set is beautiful. I particularly enjoy the way it incorporates and updates the popular glass-button style.

Icons by Danny Dioguardi

Designed by: Danny Dioguardi | Canada

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Obviously influenced by the branding of Macromedia applications before the acquisition by Adobe, Danny Diogaurdi’s rounded letterforms combine modern and retro styles.

Icons by Joshua Cortese

Designed by: Joshua Cortese | NADC WSI TAFE NSW | Australia

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Funky and original, Joshua Cortese’s set of eight CS3 application icons is visually intriguing and fun.

Icons by Kimberly Smith

Designed by: Kimberly Smith | United States

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Inspired by Adobe’s Apollo application, Kimberly Smith represents Adobe software as the Seven Wonders of the World in a very interesting interpretation.

Icons by Lauren Swaab

Designed by: Lauren Swaab | NADC WSI TAFE NSW | Australia

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Eclectic and funky, Lauren Swaab’s design avoids the most common cliches that often appear in icon designs to create surprisingly effective and refreshingly creative images.

Icons by Loic Savrimoutou

Designed by: Loic Savrimoutou | NADC WSI TAFE NSW | Australia

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Loic Savrimoutou’s hand-drawn, color-centric icons are a nice touch of minimalism.

Icons by Natasha KOLESNIKOV

Designed by: Natasha KOLESNIKOV | NADC WSI TAFE NSW | Australia

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Beginning with pencil sketches, Natasha Kolesniko’vs vibrant Photoshop, ImageReady, Illustrator, and InDesign CS3 icons are fun, wild, and pleasing. Sitting beside computer-polished icons on a desktop or dock, these really stand out. They make me want to draw, which is the perfect desire to elicit when the icons represent drawing and design applications.

Icons by Richard Scott

Designed by: Richard Scott | Australia

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
I was struck by the appropriateness and detail of the symbols in Richard Scott’s images, particularly the dynamic of the figures in the Acrobat icon. His Dreamweaver and Illustrator designs also were dead on in their illustration of the concepts represented by those applications. What I didn’t like about Richard’s icons was the association to Microsoft Office branding they brought to mind. Although Adobe applications integrate with one another about as well as Office applications, few feel excited and creatively inspired by Microsoft Office. The association, I feel, hurts what is an otherwise beautiful collection of icons.

Icons by Rok Krznar

Designed by: Rok Krznar | United Kingdom

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Rok Krznar updates the trend of glass-like user interface elements by taking Adobe’s flat CS3 icons and raising them into charming glass or plastic buttons.

Icons by Tim Nagle

Designed by: Tim Nagle | NADC WSI TAFE NSW | Australia

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Tim Nagle’s icon set is a playful suite of illustrations. I found many of the symbols to be confusing, however, such as the image of inscribing a letter to represent ImageReady, an application whose function was to prepare and process graphics for the Web.

Icons by Tyrone Blackman

Designed by: Tyrone Blackman | NADC WSI TAFE NSW | Australia

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Whereas many of the other contest submissions restored identifiable symbols imagery to Adobe’s color-coded identification of CS3 applications, Tyrone Blackman followed Adobe’s lead and took the theme a few steps further. With subtle shape differences, and without even the two-letter Periodic Table of the Elements-style monikers Adobe used, Tyrone’s designs identify InDesign, Illustrator, Flash, Dreamweaver, and Photoshop by only color . The result is cool and ultra-hip icons that work at any size.

Icons by Adam Betts

Designed by: Adam Betts | United States

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Adam Betts brings the CS3 application box imagery into the icons, retaining the flavor of Adobe’s vision but going beyond the simple gradient, colored boxes of the default icons. This set was contributed to the library but was not considered for judging in the competition, at the author’s request.

Icons by Anatoliy Omelchenko

Designed by: Anatoliy Omelchenko | USA

Download This Collection (Contains both PNG and ICO format images for Mac and Windows.)

Judge’s Comments:
Definitely among my favorites, Anatoliy Omelchenko’s abstract representations of Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, and Acrobat. Simple in design but instantly recognizable as harbingers of their respective applications, Anatoliy’s designs are remarkable examples of graphic design. This set was contributed to the library but was not considered for judging in the competition, at the author’s request.


You may also like...

51 Responses

  1. Mark says:

    I can’t be­lieve how bad these all are. The win­ning en­try is so busy and looks like clip art with let­ters slapped on. 

    The on­ly pro­fes­sion­al look­ing set is Adam’s and why he wouldn’t al­low it to be judged is be­yond me.

  2. Matthew Treder says:

    This con­test, and the many fas­ci­nat­ing icon sets that have de­vel­oped out of Adobe’s staid, low-key new icon set, seem to bear out Adobe’s wis­dom in go­ing with such a min­i­mal­ist ap­proach. Would we have seen such an out­pour­ing of cre­ativ­i­ty had Adobe just gone with an­oth­er vari­a­tion on the pre­vi­ous theme?

  3. Wow! I have to agree with the judges. The first set is sim­ply amaz­ing. Very cre­ative and well de­signed. My on­ly bit of con­struc­tive crit­i­cism is that these de­signs will get lost when reduced.

    But, con­grat­u­la­tions, non the less.

  4. I love this con­test and agree that the de­fault CS3 icons leave a bit to be de­sired. I have to say that my fa­vorites are the icons by Adam Betts and Vito Zgonik. Good stuff all around.

  5. Very dis­ap­point­ed with these de­signs, all are way too busy. The thing about icons is they are icons… not mi­ni web­sites. I al­ready had Adam’s set from a link on life­hack­er(?) but the rest leave a lot to be de­sired. I al­so can’t be­lieve that these were the on­ly entries.

    Let it not go un­no­ticed that I have no room to talk – as I en­tered squat :)

  6. I have to agree with the first poster here. The ma­jor­i­ty of these icon sets are ex­treme­ly poor, way too busy, and don’t come any clos­er to “solv­ing the prob­lem” of Adobe’s orig­i­nal icons.

    I wish I had known about this com­pe­ti­tion soon­er, as I am in the process of de­sign­ing my own CS3 icon re­place­ment set and would have con­tributed what I have done so far.
    Have a look at the icons here:

  7. Mjenius says:

    Gotta love the Apollo and R2. Device cen­tral icons look like an old Ericsson cell I used to have. They’re nice, ap­par­ent­ly the Apple gel look is still in fashion.

  8. mat says:

    i’ll stick with the adobe icons i think.

    to be fair, some are bet­ter than oth­ers – but in gen­er­al, this is like a les­son in bad icon de­sign, es­pe­cial­ly the ‘win­ner’.

  9. Chris says:

    Wow… all of these suck ex­cept Adam Betts and Rok Krznar’s en­tries. Why Mr. Betts chose not to have his en­try judged is be­yond me. All the oth­er icons look like cli­part with cheap word art and de­fault PS brush­es slapped on…

  10. atom bum says:

    wow. The win­ner is sure hor­rid– like said, be­ing low on con­cep­tu­al strength and con­trast, busy, un­equal on in­ter­re­lat­ed vi­su­al vol­umes etc it pret­ty much breaks all the rules of good icon design. 

    I’ll stick with the orig­i­nal CS3 icons thanky­ou­very­much. You see, one thing they do re­al­ly well is stand out on my dock and en­able me start up apps with a mere glance.

  11. jml says:


    Mostly, just hor­rid. I can see that, and I’m not a designer.

    Adam’s is nice, though.

  12. iJavaJoe says:

    Wow and I thought what adobe came up with was bad. Adam’s set isn’t bad, cer­tain­ly bet­ter then adobe’s; jml put it best, Ick!

  13. slim says:

    I’m sure the com­peti­tors put in alot of time and ef­fort so I feel for them; how­ev­er, I do feel that the win­ner here is the Macromedia Team that de­vel­oped the orig­i­nal CS3 icons:

    I’ll stick with the orig­i­nal CS3 icons thanky­ou­very­much. You see, one thing they do re­al­ly well is stand out on my dock and en­able me start up apps with a mere glance.

  14. Domi says:

    Arrrghh, my eyes! But se­ri­ous­ly, al­most ll of these are tru­ly aw­ful. The win­ning en­try is in­cred­i­ble – they re­al­ly serve no pur­pose as icons. Adam Betts and Vito Zgonik seem like the on­ly ones who have a clue! Then again, we shouldn’t be sur­prised that Kimberly’s icon set won.

  15. mark says:

    1st place? are you kid­ding me? hideous. busy.

    ku­dos to adam, vi­to, and rok (al­though rok’s de­signs seem a bit dat­ed). still, cre­ative sim­plic­i­ty is best.

    the rest of the en­tries are ab­solute­ly atrocious.

    i’m still floored by the de­signs that won 1st place. what were the judges think­ing? oh, well….

  16. Mr. Reeee says:

    I’m stunned at how bad these are! 

    The win­ning en­try is ab­solute­ly dread­ful! No re­la­tion be­tween icons… they’re for a SUITE of ap­pli­ca­tions! Fussy, busy, will not scale well! They’re pic­tures, NOT icons!

    Adam’s set is the best of the bunch.

    The re­sults don’t sur­prise me in the least when look­ing at the dee-sign of this web site… Horrific.

  17. mtx says:

    It’s fright­en­ing, to me, that there are “de­sign­ers” out there that are ca­pa­ble of cre­at­ing such trashy icons (aside from Adam and even Rok’s). Even more fright­en­ing are the judges en­dors­ing such ter­ri­ble de­signs. Is this some sort of be­lat­ed April fools joke?

  18. Oyvind says:

    I to­tal­ly agree with the first com­ment from Mark, most of these are plain ug­ly. Far too much de­tail, hor­ri­ble over­all look, and bad­ly executed.

    The on­ly good ones are Vito and Adam’s icons.

  19. pbear says:

    Comments are spot on. Most of these haven’t reached the lev­el of sim­pli­fi­ca­tion to be icon­ic and the lev­el of con­sis­ten­cy to work to­geth­er as a set.

    Anatoliy Omelchenko’s comes the clos­est I think to achiev­ing the goal among those who didn’t fol­low the of­fi­cial Adobe CS3 style more close­ly (and some of those are nice­ly done as well).

    The con­test was a good idea though. :)

  20. paulie says:

    Cool! I love them!

  21. patrick says:

    An icon should be able to in­stant­ly rep­re­sent vi­su­al­ly the ap­pli­ca­tion it be­longs to. All of this can be done in a vi­su­al­ly ap­peal­ing way, but with­out ex­tra­ne­ous de­tail and fluff. The first place icon col­lec­tion is pa­thet­ic. Adam Betts’ de­sign is the clear win­ner among the par­tic­i­pants, and worth the down­load. The rest are garbage (par­tic­u­lar­ly first place)!

  22. eric says:

    ouch! the win­ners icons are the worst i ever seen. hurts my eyes. 

    judge, hel­lo? i’m sure if some­one does some re­search, he’ll find out that these are just cli­part pic­tures. there is even a clue:

    “In the back­ground of the light­box some­thing has clear­ly been erased or paint­ed over”

    is kim­ber­ly your best friend?

  23. leopatra says:

    Ohh my god!…the first place it ug­ly! Adam Beths are okay though

  24. Mjenius says:

    What? a recount?

    Wow, you guys are re­lent­less. Like a pack of starv­ing coy­otes on a wound­ed calf. lol

  25. Tim Houghton says:

    I was ex­pect­ing at least a few good icons. Unfortunately these are al­most all to­tal­ly aw­ful. Talk about a pile of shite! First place is par­tic­u­lar­ly shite.

    The on­ly ones which are even re­mote­ly at­trac­tive are Adam, Rok and Vito’s.

  26. pixeslut says:

    man… thoe winner’s are HORRIBLE. I know its been said in every post, but it bears re­peat­ing, lest she ever get the idea of at­tempt­ing to de­sign an icon set again.

    In fact most of them were bad. The on­ly de­cents ones were Vito’s, Rok’s, and Adam’s. And adam was­nt even in for judging.

    Danny’s wer­ent hor­ri­ble ei­ther, i jsut dont liek the fact that he used the old im­agery in his representations.

    Then again the new icons and brand­ing schema for the prod­uct lines dont both­er me at all. I thi­unk they could stand some glass as Vito or Rok have done, but they ar­ent bad enough to make me change the icons the pro­grams are shipped with it.

  27. wes says:

    it’s easy to crit­i­cise and yes most of these are not great. Vito’s are clean and so­phis­ti­cat­ed and I like Richard’s unique look­ing icons.

    I am puz­zled as to why every­one is rav­ing about Adam’s though…..just copy and paste from the new CS3 box­es!? Rok’s aswell look good but where is the originality?…..I be­lieve this comp was about gen­er­at­ing new and unique icons. Although alot are poor at least it is ob­vi­ous they are orig­i­nal creations.

  28. cut-the-crap says:

    in fair­ness, a few are good but every­thing else are crap! sor­ry but i’m to­tal­ly disappointed.

    those who agreed that the win­ner de­served it, sor­ry but i have to dis­agree. to­tal­ly dis­agree. just look­ing at it’s pre­view size now, i don’t think it will look good on high res­o­lu­tion screens.

    every­thing sucks like quark.

  29. cut-the-crap says:

    to be fair, here’s my explanation:

    first prize: not too clear. dreamweaver = dream­catch­er?! pfff! in­de­sign us­es light­box? i think it’s for il­lus­tra­tor. the brand new spank­ing Photoshop be­came an old cam­era? il­lus­tra­tor: is that a trash­can? lo­gos are not of the same size, not of the same look and feel, not fam­i­ly. this sucks big time. Not even the best.

    sec­ond prize: are those brooches?? What’s that el­e­ment be­hind the lo­gos? And it’s not CS Cubed. It’s CS THREE. It’s bare­ly read­able! OH CRAP!

    third prize: it’s just the orig­i­nal lo­go with back­ground on it and mur­dered the “fam­i­ly” feel of the set. It just re­placed the flash lo­go and ac­ro­bat. Not even good.

    And this site breaks on fire­fox es­pe­cial­ly this com­ment box.

  30. grunyen says:

    Am I the on­ly one hav­ing trou­ble down­load­ing these? 

    I tried two sets (the on­ly de­cent ones) and I get a zip that gives an un­ex­pect­ed end of archive er­ror, and there’s on­ly one or two icons inside.

  31. opeter says:

    I agree with these, that say, that most of these sets are quite am­a­ter­ish and unprofessional.

    Also, i can­not un­der­stand, how did the ju­ry choose the icons made by Kimberly Smith???

    Well, Kimberly tried, to mim­ic some Apple de­signe icons… so kitschy icons. OMG!

    The on­ly three sets that i think should be at the top 3 are Adam Betts’s, Rok Krznar’s and Vito Zgornik’s icons.

    Sorry guys, but the ju­ry didn’t do a good job at all.

  32. Mike says:

    My first re­ac­tion is that most of the sets are some­what of a pick and choose. They fail to in­cor­po­rate icons for all the ap­pli­ca­tions in the cre­ative suites. That should be points off. Adobe, I be­lieve was try­ing to cap­ture the sim­plic­i­ty that macro­me­dia had with the lo­gos and icons and even pack­ag­ing. Although I think Adobe should have car­ried over and adapt­ed the lo­gos for their apps that macro­me­dia had, the icons tru­ly are per­fect as they are. Easier to find than the ever chang­ing flow­ers and feath­ers and what not, and uti­liz­ing a sol­id sin­gle col­or to re­al­ly make the icons stick out. If you no­tice you prob­a­bly see the col­or now quick­er than the let­ters mak­ing it easy to spot the app. Honestly I think there should be an­oth­er con­test. Rules should in­clude the whole suite of apps so that you would­nt have a cou­ple of odd­ball apps that dont match the fam­i­ly. And no us­ing any of the past or cur­rent adobe el­e­ments. This is a new era in adobes life and adobe is the on­ly one that has cap­tured that fact. These icons are like look­ing at the first pass of con­cepts be­fore re­al­ly ham­mer­ing out the cre­ative de­sign. Be Creative and think about all as­pects of the pur­pose of icons. Take the first three ideas you have sketch them out and then throw them away and start over. thats go­ing to make your cre­ative juices boil over!

    Peace out!

  33. Raven says:

    I am in­ter­est­ed in what you the win­ners used to draw your im­ages. I am re­ori­ent­ed to the mar­ket and aside from Photoshop/Illustrator (or sim­i­lar) pro­grams, what do you use to ac­quire light and 3-d imag­ing? Assuming that there is more pro­gram use than straight com­put­er paint­ing. Any in­sights for a novice?

  34. 2nd_Designer says:

    It’s in­cred­i­ble that those icons won the first place… they look so child­ish it’s sim­ply un­be­liev­able. Just take a look at the Dreamweaver icon… WTH is that ? Dreamcatcher rep­re­sent­ing the Dreamweaver ? Why in the hell ? She ever used Dreamweaver in her life ? Also, InDesign icon as you al­ready men­tioned, was bad­ly re­touched, so many er­rors… you said it your­self… so why she won that first place in the end is be­yond me.

    Only 100% pro­fes­sion­al icons are those done by Adam Betts who is re­al pro­fes­sion­al in every­thing he does. Same sto­ry goes for those done by Danny Dioguardi. Too bad he cre­at­ed 3 icons only.

    Conclusion: First place win­ner should be any­one else in this com­pe­ti­tion ex­cept this Kimberly character.

  35. Jason says:

    Don’t show lamb to a ra­bid wolf is the les­son of this page.

  36. Jason says:

    Then I saw this:


    and I thought, oh well, lambs for the slaughter.

  37. Seth says:

    Has the “win­ner” ever used InDesign? How does a light­table with slides make any sense? It’s not Aperture, it’s a page lay­out pro­gram for chris­sakes! That’s about the worst thing an icon can do… look like a dif­fer­ent type of pro­gram entirely.

  38. nk says:

    First off, I wan­na tell this “cut-the-crap” char­ac­ter that this site does NOT break on Firefox (least not on my Firefox, any­way). I agree with most peo­ple here that Vito’s de­signs are very pleas­ant, and work nice­ly as a set. I dun­no why every­one is rav­ing about Adam Betts’ en­try, th0ugh—scaled down, it looks like a vom­i­ty mess (maybe there are more sheep than wolves on this page?). 

    Now, Anatoliy is one guy who hasn’t got­ten enough cred­it; his de­signs aren’t the pret­ti­est on the desk­top, but they’re def­i­nite­ly the most thought­ful de­signs of the whole bunch—pity he on­ly made 4 of dem… Danny’s de­signs are al­so good (see com­ment above, rinse, lath­er, repeat).

  39. Paul says:

    Oh my… this gives me re­newed be­lief in my own abil­i­ty as an icon de­sign­er, even though I’ve nev­er tried it be­fore! I’m not a fan of the new Adobe lo­gos ei­ther, but Rok Krznar’s mod­i­fi­ca­tion of them is bet­ter than any of the oth­er en­tries here.

  40. Vice says:

    I re­al­ly like Adam’s and Vito’s de­signs, sim­ple yet creative.

  41. Liam says:

    I agree with the first post. In my opin­ion aw­ful icons apart, of course from Adam’s set.

  42. Allen says:

    Your icons are freeeek­ing awe­some! keep up the great work!

  43. Jennifurious says:

    Yeah, I can’t down­load them either.

  44. Jason A says:

    Just ab­solute­ly terrible!

  45. casey says:

    i re­al­ly like adam’s. now how do i ap­ply it???

  46. Fel!pe says:


    greeting’s from Chile!!

    see me in…….

  47. sarah says:

    No com­ment about the first place win­ner (as usual)…”kitsch” would be the on­ly way to de­scribe it. Admittedly, I was a bit nos­tal­gic for the old­er icons so I looked for re­place­ments right away and set­tled with Vito’s be­cause I did not want to ven­ture too far off of Adobe’s vi­sion. I am not gaga about Adam’s like every­one else be­cause color-wise they are a bit too busy and I did not like how the up­per­case and low­er­case were near­ly the same size, shoved in the cor­ner as if they were about to melt off the page with the rest of the com­po­si­tion. I’ll even­tu­al­ly go back to Adobe’s orig­i­nal icons…but for now, Vito will help me through the transition.

  48. magus says:

    ter­ri­ble icons! all too busy! the first is ab­solute­ly hor­ri­ble! an icon nowa­days has to be sim­ple and con­trast­ing, and these are not!

  49. Girish says:

    hor­ri­ble icons! I re­al­ly like Adams Icons… I dont have com­ments on first place win­ner… Its look­ing horrible…

Leave a Reply