Designing app icons (opens in new tab) is a tricky business. They don't necessarily have to follow the trend of flat design (opens in new tab) that currently seems to influence how apps look, but they do have to be distinctive and recognisable. On top of this, Leo Natsume (opens in new tab) had to give apps a Toy Story flavour in his latest project.
The Brazilian based artist developed these apps for Disney and was responsible for the creative direction, illustration and design of the icons. The result is a complete set of icons that make up a theme for Android mobiles.
Having previously worked with big names including Google and Coca Cola, it's no surprise that Natsume's design work showcases a clever attention to detail. For each icon the perfect character or image is used to reflect the app in question. Natsume even scoured spin-off Toy Story media to source the ideal imagery.
Some app designs are so straightforward but the idea couldn't be bettered, such as the phone character from Toy Story 3 which is used for the call icon, whereas others were created with the help of a bit of lateral thinking. For example, Buzz Lightyear might not appear suited to the Gmail app on the surface, but by subtly tweaking his character design he becomes the perfect fit.
Natsume developed his designs from sketches in Moleskine notebooks and went on to create real projections of the icons in order to see how the colours and lighting behaved.
All this hard work has certainly paid off as Natsume has created a distinctive and practical theme stuffed with thoughtful designs. The whole icon set can be found on Behance (opens in new tab), where you'll also find other favourite characters such as Lotso and Mr Potato Head.