In my recent post about mapping land parcels for the fire department, I mentioned I changed some existing icons, but I didn’t go into much detail about how I did it. I started by finding free icons on the Internet through a Google search. Next, my quandary was what format they need to be in and what size.

In researching this I discovered the existing Depiction icons were in .PNG format but didn’t find much info about size. So I checked with the folks at Depiction about the existing icon files and they provided me with a full set of the files (about 1mb worth of data). Because these icons all have a similar look and style, they look much better than many of the icons I downloaded, so I decided that I would use these instead. (They have now made the source icons available for download.)

Now the question was how to modify them. For my existing project, I needed four new icons: two residences of different colors and two vacant land icons of different color. I have used Photoshop and other photo manipulation software before and so I started to look for free software that might be easier to use. I found two: GIMP , which is an open source photo manipulation software and Sib Icon Editor. Both of these are free software. I ended up using Gimp for this particular need.

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