Not everyone is gifted with the skill to create good looking icons in Photoshop, GIMP, and other image editing tools. Sure, there are a ton of customized icons available online that you can download, but those don’t help if you need to create a custom icon.
If you wanted to create some simple icons from photos or images, Clic is worth a shot.
This is a portable program, run the executable and it creates a couple of folders to store the images. Clic has a compact interface that resembles a basic image editor, and that is a good thing. The large box on the left displays the image that you’ve selected. The pane on the right shows a preview of the actual size of the icon. It also displays the image’s properties such as the colors used, bits, greyscale, transparent, dimensions, etc.
To load an image that you want to convert to an icon, copy it to your clipboard. You may drag and drop an image to edit it. Switch to Clic and select Edit > Paste. Optionally, use “Paste to Fit” to have the program resize the image automatically for you. The toolbar buttons can be used for pasting the image too.
Don’t worry if the enlarged view that is displayed on the left is pixelated, the preview on the right side is what matters, though the actual size will be a bit smaller than that.
The Size menu is where you can select the icon size, it has the following options: 16 x 16 , 24 x 24, 32 x 32, 48 x 48, 64 x 64, 72 x 72, and 96 x 96 (in pixels). Essentially this is what the application does, it resizes an image to one of the mentioned sizes, and saves it an “icon” image format.
Switch to the Image menu in Clic, and you will find the options to add a mirror or flip effect to the photo. You can also rotate the image left or right, or invert the colors, toggle the transparency or greyscale from this menu. Be careful while editing the image, because the undo/redo option in the program only lets you go back/forward a single step. Hit the save button in the top left corner and give your new icon a name. The program saves images in the .ICO format.
The application has a Screen capture option on the toolbar; to use it, click on the hand icon and drag it over the image that you want to convert to an icon. Hold down the space bar to toggle the Ultra Fine mode, if normal isn’t good enough.
Clic is available in a portable version. The application supports keyboard shortcuts that are handy for editing the image quickly.
Clic is an easy way to make unique looking icons, even if they aren’t exactly HD quality. But it is the lack of advanced options that makes the program user-friendly, you don’t need any drawing or technical skills to use the program. You can of course accomplish the same with any image editor if you have basic editing skills, but even so Clic can do it in a couple of clicks, so you can create a large number of icons in a very short time. For best results I’d advise using a screen capture tool to crop the image, and maintain the correct aspect ratio, before pasting it for editing.
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