How to make beautiful 3D icons

Tips and tricks for creating eye-catching 3D design in Vectary

Start designing 3D icon
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Flat icon design is everywhere, so stand out from the crowd!

Designers nowadays are trying to create 3D icons as minimalistic as possible to be "cool" and recognized. The biggest challenge of flat design is to rely heavily on colors, which is not always an easy task. Instead, having a full spectrum of tools like shadows, gradients, materials, textures is much handier when it comes to being creative. These are especially helpful in 3D design and can help create a completely new experience for the user. 

How to create amazing 3D icon

  1. Open VECTARY - it’s online and free. 
  2. Start with one of our 3D icon templates or start off with a blank scene. 
  3. Edit the 3D icon with a double click, and drag and drop free 3D models and textures from the Objects library. 
  4. Add lights to the scene and adjust the view you want to screenshot. 
  5. Save and export your 3D icon as PNG. 
  6. Share your design.  

3D icons look amazing in smartphone apps or software visuals

Whether you're an Android or iOS user, there's no doubt mobile design is the next big thing, and so are 3D icons. As a product designer you want to make sure your app stands out so that users find it quickly on the home screen. Create a beautiful experience for them from the very beginning. Make a stunning product presentation, branding or complex UI.

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Monochromatic iPhone app icons template - colorize apps or add your own

Create 3D icons with an integrated Noun Project account in the 3D assets library

If you're already familiar with 2D icons or icon libraries like Icons8 or The Noun Project, you canmake them 3D super easy with just a few clicks. In Vectary you can browse through the library of assets and find hundreds of pre-made icons from The Noun Project. Simply drag and drop them on the 3D scene and edit them however you want. Make them shine with online rendering, gradients, color wheel or materials.

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Summer sports icon set

Add 3D icon design skills to your creative network or portfolio

Start from scratch in an empty scene and design your own 3D visuals. You might find it a bit challenging, but the final result will be a great project to add to your portfolio or to popular creative networks like Dribbble or Behance. Creating 3D icons in Vectary is fast, fun and your progress is always safely stored in the cloud so you can continue working at any time and from anywhere.

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3D icons set - add your design into the icon body

Bonus tip: Personalize your PC or Mac folder design with 3D icons

We are designers too and we know foldering can easily get very messy. Or sometimes we're just bored with the operating system design and want to personalize it. In Vectary you can export your 3D design with transparent background, which helped us with folder navigation. Use this tutorial to create your own – change, import or design your own icon for your Mac or PC folders.