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Susan Kare      

Artist, Graphic Designer & Influential Computer Iconographer; Member of the Original Macintosh Product Development Team

Susan Kare is an artist and graphic designer who created many of the interface elements for the Apple Macintosh in the 1980s. She was also one of the original employees of NeXT (the company formed by Steve Jobs after leaving Apple in 1985), working as the Creative Director.

A member of the original Apple Macintosh design team, Kare worked at Apple Computer starting in 1982. Kare was originally hired into the Macintosh software group to design user interface graphics and fonts. Later, she was a Creative Director in Apple Creative Services working for the Director of that organization, Tom Suiter.

She is the designer of many typefaces, icons, and original marketing material for the original Macintosh operating system. Indeed, descendants of her groundbreaking work can still be seen in many computer graphics tools and accessories, especially icons such as the Lasso, the Grabber, and the Paint Bucket. An early pioneer of pixel art, her most recognizable works from her time with Apple are the Chicago typeface (the most prominent user interface typeface seen in Classic Mac OS, as well as the typeface used in the first four generations of the Apple iPod interface), the Geneva typeface, the original monospace Monaco typeface, Clarus the Dogcow, the Happy Mac (the smiling computer that welcomed Mac users when starting their machines), and the symbol on the Command key on Apple keyboards.

After leaving Apple, Kare joined NeXT as a designer, working with clients such as Microsoft and IBM. Her projects for Microsoft included the card deck for Windows 3.0's solitaire game, as well as numerous icons and design elements for Windows 3.0. Many of her icons, such as those for Notepad and various Control Panels, remained essentially unchanged by Microsoft until Windows XP. For IBM she produced icons and design elements for OS/2; for Eazel she contributed iconography to the Nautilus file manager.

The Museum of Modern Art store in New York City has begun carrying stationery and notebooks featuring her designs. Beginning February 7, 2007, she has produced icons for the "Gifts" feature of the popular social-networking website, Facebook. Initially, profits from gift sales were donated to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation, for the fight against breast cancer. After Valentine's Day, the gift selection was modified to include new and limited edition gifts that did not necessarily pertain to Valentine's Day. One of the gift icons, titled "Big Kiss" is also featured in some versions of Mac OS X as a user account picture.

Kare currently heads a digital design practice in San Francisco. She received MA and Ph.D. degrees from New York University.

News


Making the original Mac computer icons - Video - Technology

The classic icons of the original Macintosh set the standard for how we interact with computers today. Meet the designer, Susan Kare.

The untold story of why the Command key replaced the Apple key ...

From Yahoo News: Susan Kare is a well-known graphic designer who has worked for various companies including Apple, where she created the icons that were ...

She made the Macintosh smile – News Stream - CNN.com Blogs

Susan Kare was the graphic designer who created the Happy Mac. She spoke to us about the process behind that and many of the other icons that made the ...

'Passion, Adventure and Heroic Engineering'... and Talent Inclusion ...

In the Steve Jobs movie, we barely meet Joanna Hoffman and we don't meet Susan Kare, both were a core part of the original Macintosh product development  ...

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