I’ve been working on a mobile app project in which one portion of the app is designed to plot company locations in each U.S. state. The original idea was to use just the two-letter U.S. Postal abbreviation in lieu of an icon. However, the way the app development engine is designed, it scrubs a particular column of the Excel spreadsheet that contains the company locations and uses the state name as the category name in the app scroll bar. So it seemed a bit redundant to use CO as the app icon and Colorado as the category name beneath it, for instance.
The solution? Use vector state outlines to create 50 state icons to represent each category, with the state name showing up below the icon.
I’ve created a single vector file with 50 layers representing each state. The downloads below are saved in CS4, CS3, CS2, and CS formats. These files are free for you to use and modify as needed. Because I work on PC, I don’t have a Mac version available, but my understanding is that Adobe files can be opened cross platform. I’ve also attached individual PNG files for each state–if you don’t mind using red icons.
But what if you don’t want your state icons in red? What if you want them in blue? Well, obviously, you’ll need to alter the vector files, but then you run into the same quandary I did: Each layer has to be saved into its own PNG file if you want to upload the icons to a mobile app, for instance. While this process isn’t difficult, it can be tedious.
There is good news–news that will save you a bundle of time.
I came across an Illustrator script that not only exports each layer into its own, individual PNG file, but it also uses your layer name as the file name. This handy script allowed me to create 50 separate PNG files in about 3 seconds. Here’s the URL: http://www.metaphorical.net/note/on/layer_export
Enjoy the files, and if you use them, take a minute to leave a comment with a link showing how you used them. I’d love to see your work!
DOWNLOAD ZIP FILES HERE (each vector file is roughly 4.5MB)