Emoji are Scalable (Which Makes Them Versatile)

Whether you use them or not, I can almost guarantee that you at least know what emoji are. If you're not sure what I'm talking about, let me explain. Emoji are icons that can be used in just about any situation, just like letters, characters or special symbols. Emoji are very useful for helping to get a point across because they are image-based characters, rather than text-based. They are universally available on all Apple products (Mac, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch), and there y've becoming more popular on Windows- and Android-based systems. I use them all the time, not just in text conversations or emails, but even in calendar events to help keep things visual.

Emoji are great for other things too, thanks to their incredible scalability. What do I mean by that? It means I can blow them up to much larger than just your normal 12-point font. This allows me to use them in other applications like making posters, flyers, signs, etc.

First, let me review how to use emoji. On a Mac, simply press Control + Command + Space. This will bring up a window where we can browse all available emoji:

As you can see, emoji are broken down into categories, which make it easier to browse. To insert an emoji, double-click on the one you want to use. That's it! Now, let's talk about enlarging our emoji.

To enlarge, we just need to remember one rule... emoji can be treated like a text-base character. With text, we can highlight and adjust the size of the font to enlarge. The same holds true with emoji. Highlight the emoji character, then adjust the font to a larger size.

These emoji are not vector-based, meaning at some point, they will start to look pixelated and fuzzy. If you're picky, this will start to happen around 80 point. If you're a little less picky, you can get away with 150 point or so. Here's an example of what they look like at 150 points (using Pages as my application of choice to show them off):

Posted on May 29, 2014 and filed under Design, How To, Mac, Opinion.