Old smileys

Smileys (or emojis nowadays) make me upset, still. Back in 2004, a lot of smileys were little pixel things using mostly horrible colors, like full yellow with linear shades of black, so I tried to make my own set. Because they were made for use in text, they are rather small. I suppose our fonts are larger nowadays, and emojis seem to be made using vector graphics. Because of this, they aren't optimised on a pixel level and can look blurry. However, looking at the Ubuntu SVG icons at least, it seems the artists are aligning the details and lines to pixel boundaries.

Unfortunately, Most SVG and vector graphic icons look like poop. The whole aesthetic is poop. It's stupid reflection gradients packed into a poop file format sometimes taking up hundreds of kilobytes (looking at you, libre office) for a 24x24 icon because no one can be arsed to optimise. Amiga Workbench had it right three decades ago T_T

Oh, well, look at that, I put my grumpy pants on this morning. I... think I may have worn the other pairs out, so these are all I'm left with now. Anyways, without further ado, here's what I wrote in this page a decade+ ago.

Here's some basic smileys I made from scratch in PhotoShop 5.5 and ImageReady, most are 16x16px and less than 16 colors. I'm pretty happy with the yellow color. These were made for a specific light brown background (ConceptArt.org).

If you want to use for your forum, give me credit somewhere and drop me a note. Keep the filenames. I will not allow these being sold along with other smileys in any collections*.

* 2016 note: Back then smiley ads/banners were everywhere on the web, and they featured the same awful aesthetic we're seeing in emojis now, though maybe with a bit more "wacky attitude".

- :)

- :D

- :P

- :(

- >_<;

- >:(

- eeh?

- ...and I never drink... wine.

- I'm hip, baby.

- :3

- Nonono.

- I'm sceptic.

- Mistake?


- Too much work.

- Yawn.

- Swedish pimp represent yo ganja man!

- A mouse?

- Mad chef.

- Oboy!

- Afroboy.

- Arrows -

- Profile things.

Upd: 25 July, 04

- Clown ambi.

- Hat.

- Drool.

- Should be anim.

- Needleteeth.

- Gross.

- Holding inside.

- Dad.

- Jawdrop.

- Love.

- Canadian.

- 404

- !

- ?

- Happy.

- Appeal?

- Happysquint.

- Wink.

- Talk/intrest.

- Sad or disappointed.

- 404 sign.

- Eyeloss.

- Raw head.

... - Alphabet

Upd: 27 July, 04

- No such handle

- Bad shell ejection too :/

- Grandpa.

- Bow / mOm.

- Heart.

- Moon.

- Bounce.

- Coke.


- Skull'n bones.

- Patriot / American.

- BS.

- dead.

- Oh-no / bite lip / scared.

Upd: 29 July, 04

- Hats off.

- Over here.

- Shrug.

- Improved muscles.

- Vodka / Liqour.

- Absolut Vodka.

- Acid trip Syringe.

- Uncle perv.

- Vodka machine.

Mini Upd days later:

I had the flag wrong on the Patriot. Updated the one above. Also:

- Patriot + smile.

- Canadian patroit.


Jedi, sniffer, humper, handclap, rocker, pacman, Zzz, (oYo), king, bigeyewobble, electricuted, beerbottle, raygunzap to dust, puke.

2016 note: If I were to pixel these now, I'd do it differently.

Art by Arne Niklas Jansson