of Scott Spensley

aka Dragon Tongue

Icons and Interfaces

Creating the Schemes:

Schemes at first seemed extremely difficult to create... but after chatting online with some of the best scheme creators in the world, I discovered it took them about 6 months to make a good scheme, and involved using somewhere between 8 and 12 different applications, shuffling files back and forth. It required artistic ability, and logistic ability (to work out the best order to do things for the desired result), and LOTS of repetition!

Thousands of images had to be created, then chopped up so that some bits stretch while other bits repeat, and others move... and that's without counting all the hundreds of icons each scheme requires. Every image has to be pixel perfect or it just doesn't work.

It also involved what might be called 'graphic reverse engineering' to work out which pixel from which image controlled the colours of various text shadows and highlights, etc.

Once I got the hang of the concept... and while continually asking endless dumb questions... and spending practically my every waking moment on it... I managed to make my first scheme.

It had taken me 3 months!

Immediately I got back onto my next scheme. With each new scheme I made, I tried to push boundaries... tried to make a scheme do something that I had never seen before, or what appeared to be impossible, and at the same time, tried to make them as practical, easy to use, and asthetically pleasing as I could.

Using Photshop scripts, I managed to streamline a lot of the processes... I got better and faster... and was always experimenting with what was possible. Towards the end of my scheme making, I was making up to 10 schemes a week, and noticed that many of the experts were asking me how to do certain things.

I had become the most prolific, fastest, experimental schemer, and arguably pushed more boundaries than any other scheme maker in the world.

I had become... the Expert!

All it took was commitment and lots of time.

That was when Apple changed to OSX and kaliedoscope was shut down ... and I had to start all over again.




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BlueIn Icons

BluK Icons

ChromUn Icons

Chrome Icons

Multi Icons

Cut Icons


Pounamu and Paua Icons

Tan Icons

SteamPunk Theme

Steam Punk Square Icons

SteamPunk Square

iPodTouch or iPhone
DT SteamPunk beta theme
showing the square icons

SteamPunk Round

iPodTouch or iPhone
DT SteamPunk beta theme
showing the round icons

These are the SteamPunk sunken round Icons

more SteamPunk Theme parts

various parts of the SteamPunk beta theme
which replaced and themed the interfaces of most apps
the ipodtouch and iphone iOS3.x

3 OSX ShapeShifter themes

DT BrassPaper b3, DT XAnon b3, and DT Gripped Alloy Smooth b3

Creating the Icons:

All my icons were created in Photoshop using multiple Layer Effects.

Some of my icon files have many hundred layers!
It's a good thing icons are so small... trying to do this on larger images would even bog down an Apple!

I quite enjoy making icons that have a 3Dness to them... I like icons to look or feel real, but I still like to push boundaries... which is why I created a number of icon series that instead of sitting on the desktop, sank into it. I hadn't seen it done before... So I tried it and liked it.

I think I have just about got the sunken icons out of my system now. =)


Creating the Themes:

After the apparent flexibilty that Kaliedoscope Schemes gave OS9, It seemed a major step back to the Themes of OSX... Yes the graphic quality was better, and so much simpler to build, using png's with built in alpha channels was a dream but... there were so many limitations... at least... that's what I thought.


Creating the iOS Summerboard Themes:

SteamPunk: I had seen quite a few Leather themes, but none of them had quite the look I wanted, So I started off making a classy Leather with Brass... but over time I started leaning more towards the weathered SteamPunk ideas.

My DT Leather SteamPunk beta theme converts practically all the generic interface images that most Apps on the iphone and ipodtouch use. And it has two full sets of icons, a square and (of course) the sunken brass spheres, that seem to suit it so well, plus a set of folder icons. This theme however was designed for iOS3.x and has quite a few holes in it on iOS4.x


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Little Black Book
series of icons

Little Blue Book

Little Leather Book

Little Red Book

Little White Book

Little Brushed Balls

Little Blue Balls

Little Copper Balls

Little Cradled Balls

Brass Balls



some earlier OS 9 Kaliedoscope schemes