Creating MacOS Document Icons using DrawDown

One of the core benefits of using DrawDown is similar to Photoshop's smart objects, you can use a single consistent image in lots of different ways. I blogged about how you can use DrawDown to achieve consistent but native icons previously, but we can take that a step further. 

Once again, everything in this blog can be done with either the free command line version of drawdown (available here), but for ease of visualization I'm using the DrawDown MacOS app (available here, if you'd like to support continued development of drawdown this is a great way to do it)

Starting with an App Icon

One such re-use can be in a MacOS document icon. For this example I'm using the DrawDown finished app icon, but you can use anything you like

Deriving the Document Icon

The generic document icon ships on every version of MacOS, and can be found at 




We can use this and our app icon and compose them together to create the final document icon in just a few lines

We create a new Document frame, and then add two layers. The first references the generic document icon, and the second overlays a slightly smaller version of our app icon. 

You can use this DrawDown directly with your own app icons, or add it to the bottom of the drawdown that already creates your app icon. They key thing is that you are just re-using and composing resources. Create many things from one.

Download the .dd file here