Interview: Budi Tanrim – Budicon

Interview: Budi Tanrim – Budicon

Today I’m extremely happy to be bringing to you an interview with another great icon designer – Budi Tanrim.
He is a deep-thinking digital multidisciplinary designer who believes in simplicity and user-oriented approach. You can find him on Dribbble, Twitter and here: http://buditanrim.co/

Apart from being an incredibly skilled product designer and illustrator, Budi have rocked the icon design world with the amazing icon set for Yahoo, and his own premium icon set Budicon!

A lot more can be said about this great human being and fantastic icon designer, but without further ado, let’s jump straight into the interview!

Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Who are you? Where did you come from?

Hey, my name is Budi Harto Tanrim. I consider myself as a multidisciplinary designer and currently live in Surabaya, Indonesia.

Fun fact: I never went to any formal design education, I graduated as an accountant from my University. I started my design career by entering a lot of design contests on 99 Designs.
Budi Tanrim – Budicon

You’re a really talented Multidisciplinary Designer. How did you get started with icon design?

Back in 2012, I was in my early career and taught myself how to do Mobile App Design. I was pretty much struggling to find any good icon and begin to see it as an opportunity.

While I have no idea how to design an icon, I started to learn from pieces of freebie and tutorial here and there. Without realizing it, I have started to create a few icons for any web and app projects myself.

Since I’m a big fan of creating the side project, thus I dedicated 2 months to create my very first icon set which I called Gemicon. The feedback was overwhelming and Smashing Magazine featured me on their site.

The funny thing is, I created all of those icons in Photoshop, which is pretty crazy. Nonetheless, I have learned a lot from this side project. And I guess that’s where I get started with icon design.

by Budi Tanrim

Where/how do you get your inspiration from?

Technically speaking, I use Dribbble, Behance and Pinterest when it comes to finding inspiration from designer’s works. And sometimes Deviantart and Zerply for some illustration works.

However, my best inspiration is from observing life and objects around me.
Since a couple of years ago, I started to observe more in my life and try to expand my visual library as much as I can. I believe this is the best way to enable myself grow and constantly teach myself about something new.
illustration process

Tell us about your working day. What does your creative process look like?

Well, I love to get up early in the morning, at about 6:00 AM and start my day in the slow and relax pace. I will check and reply to some emails for about an hour and be working on my side project until 10 AM.

Once this morning routine is done, I will take a shower and grab some food for my body ready to kickass the Client projects. Depending on what type of the projects I’m dealing with, you can find me working on either icon projects or illustrations or even web and app design. I always try to finish the work at about 7:00 PM.

After I finished my dinner, I usually start to study and learning on something new in the evening until 11:00 PM. I recently learning some traditional 2D animation, which is pretty fun.
ipad-pro icons sketching

You’re well-known for your Budicon icon set. I know that right now you’re working on launching Budicon v2. But could you tell us how everything started? How did you come up with the idea to create your own icon set in the first place?

Once I finished with Gemicon back in 2013. The redesign on iOS 7 was revealed and I’m instantly in love with the simplicity of the thin stroke icon.

Since it is new, no one really created the icon in that specific style back then. I was basically just creating a bunch of icons for my clients. One day, I realized that I have over 200 icons collected together from all of my past projects. So, I was like: “Hey, this ain’t bad, I probably should share this with another designer”.

The next day, I posted my Budicon tester on Dribbble and the feedbacks are so positive. People start to ask me when can they get the full set and excited about it.

After hearing all the excitements, I dedicated almost 3 months building the icons and website. And that leads us to the Budicon v2.0 soon!

by Budi Tanrim

What was the biggest challenge when building your own set?

There is a lot of challenge when building my icon set, such as making time to work on it, which is obviously harder now than back in 2013 when I was pretty much jobless haha.
Finding the right style that somewhat generic enough for people to use but also has a personal touch is tough too.

However, I think the biggest challenge I had is how to make sure my icon set is being useful for anyone who buys it and providing an easy way to use it. That’s probably my biggest goal for Budicon v2.0, which is providing enough documentation for the icon set.
You wouldn’t believe how many people are missing something obvious sometimes, I think it is my responsibility to ensure everyone using my icon in the best possible way.

by Budi Tanrim

Here’s a really tough one: What do you think will the future of icon design be like?

First of all, I have no doubt the icon design will grow as the other field does.
I wouldn’t surprise that we will see more icon being interactive and animated going forward since it is very easy to handle with SVG on website or app.
From what I see, icon is the part of design’s eco-system, that being said, as an icon designer we have to aware all of any updates on the industry to keep up with stuff.
That’s about it! Hope you enjoyed reading this interview as much as I enjoyed doing it.



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