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Adelyn Tam is a artefact artist and illustrator based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She was able to upload her dim sum-themed animation stickers to Apple iMessage in aloof over a week. In this tutorial, she shares how you can accomplish your own stickers for iMessage. All you charge is a set of sticker designs and your computer.
When Apple arise iOS 10, I was aflame about the stickers on iMessage. Actuality a abundant iMessage user, back emojis weren’t abundant to back my thoughts, I would accomplish a doodle, booty a photo, and accelerate it to the added actuality (what is a buzz alarm anyway?).
I admired the abstraction of seeing some of my artwork actuality acclimated in circadian babble conversations and absitively to accord this a go. Here, I’m activity to allotment my action from cardboard sketches to accepting the Dim and Sum stickers arise on the iMessage App Store. This is my aboriginal attack at self-publishing a sticker or iOS app (it’s the aforementioned process), and I’m administration this from the angle of a designer.
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My action for the eight canicule in a nutshell:
Came up with a concept, sketched it on some paper. Acclimated Illustrator to actualize agenda versions of my sketches. Finished 24 stickers.
Downloaded and abstruse to use Xcode to actualize stickers. Active up for an Apple Developer’s account, and did what seemed like about a thousand accomplish to get my stickers uploaded.
Finally uploaded my body for approval to the iMessage App Store.
App cachet afflicted to “Waiting For Review.”
App cachet afflicted to “In Review.”
Stickers got accustomed and are accessible for sale!
Here’s how I able my artwork for iMessage.
I usually assignment with Illustrator back creating vectors. I will awning some basal things to agenda back advancing your Illustrator abstracts for stickers:
Know your sticker size. You charge accept 1 of the 3 sizes afterwards on in Xcode. So your artboard on Illustrator should be sized accordingly. Generally, the added abundant your artwork, the beyond your sticker admeasurement should be. I acclimated the approved admeasurement (408px x 408px) for mine.
Choose your size. This angel is taken from the iOS Human Interface Guidelines.
Create abstracted artboards for anniversary sticker. There are no set cardinal of stickers (that I could find) for the iMessage store. So my assumption is to go with a cardinal that you anticipate would address to users, abnormally if you’re affairs them.
Remember that it’s a sticker set, so try to absorb some akin of beheld accord beyond the altered stickers.
Use the “Export for Screens” feature. Export as PNG, accomplish abiding your accomplishments is set to transparent, and @1x is enough.
For the app icons, I chose to go with Sketch. Here’s a advantageous arrangement that I begin by michaellee on Github to accomplish the app icons on Sketch. In total, there are 12 figure images that you will charge for Xcode, and one for iTunes Connect. Here’s what it looks like:
Some pro tips for creating app icons on Sketch:
If you’re artful your vectors anon from Illustrator, accomplish abiding you’ve adapted your acclamation into outlines beforehand. Because you don’t appetite some acclamation to be too blubbery or too attenuate back you calibration them to the assorted sizes required.
Set your icons as symbols. That way, back you are authoritative your additional sticker set, you alone charge to alter one image.
Export them @1x and abode all in one folder.
Now that you’ve got your assets ready, it’s time to configure them in Xcode , a apparatus for developing software by Apple. You can download it for chargeless from the Mac App Store.
The action of accepting your assets assimilate Xcode is appealing straightforward. You can watch it in this video. Basically, there are two genitalia to this: one is appointment your sticker artwork, and the added is the app icons.
The aggregate of assignment from publishing the app comes afterwards that, abnormally if you’re accomplishing this for the aboriginal time like me. I will allocution about ambience up Xcode for your stickers, testing, and uploading it to iTunes Affix and the added nitty abrasive actuality in the blow of this post.
Assuming you are not a allotment of the affairs yet, you will accept to annals to be able to administer apps on the App Store. It costs $99 per year. The action is aboveboard and accepting is immediate. The alone discharge for me is I had to acquaintance Apple Support to alter my abounding acknowledged name (required), and that took about a day.
This allotment could be a accord breaker for some because it involves some antecedent investment, but, like what I consistently say to all Apple products, “Take my moneyyy!”
You charge iOS certificates to advance and administer your stickers and apps. You will charge two certificates: development and distribution. The certificates will aftermost for a year.
Click on the button at the top to actualize a new certificate.
Once your developer annual is ready, go to Annual > Certificates, and you should see the angel below. I’ve called to add my iOS certificates manually. Watch this abundant video adviser to see how it’s all done.
The action will charge absolutely a bit of beat about but contrarily it is absolutely clear. I will briefly abridge the action in the video here:
Create a new affidavit for production
Create addition affidavit for distribution
You will charge to annals an app ID for your stickers. The aforementioned ID will be acclimated afterwards on in Xcode’s configuration. Here’s a abrupt walk-through:
Here’s what abundance looked like:
An archetype of how a Bundle ID is written. It can be anything, as continued as it has never been acclimated before, but accumulate it such that it makes faculty to yourself back you apprehend it.
Confirm your capacity and register. You’re done!
I’m activity to skip answer the purpose of accessories profiles, except that you charge one to be able to install your stickers or apps on your analysis devices, and to abide them to the Apple App Store.
There are two accessories profiles that you will charge for your stickers, accent below:
The action for creating the profiles is simple already you accept your certificates and App ID set up. Aloof accept what you’ve created beforehand from the dropdown airheaded back prompted, download, install, and you’re done!
If you fabricated it this far, we are about there!
iTunes Affix is what you will use to publish, test, and appearance analytics of your app. You can acquisition it in your account. I alone begin it to be a bit hidden, so here’s a picture:
Clicking on iTunes Affix aback reveals this accomplished added world, boom.
To actualize a new app, go to My Apps > Bang on > Ample the form. Bold you accept already done the antecedent steps, you shouldn’t accept any problems bushing out the form. You should now accept created your aboriginal app (stickers).
Take some time to accustom yourself with iTunes Connect. There are two things you should affliction about here:
Tab 1: App Store
What you accept to do here:
Fill up all appropriate advice about your stickers (pricing, description, categories etc.) Upload screenshots/artwork of your stickers for the App Abundance and the iMessage App store.
The ambit that you need: iPhone 5.5 inch affectation (1242 x 2208 px), iPad (2048 x 2732 px).
Upload your app figure (1024 x 1024 px)
You will additionally see the cachet (preparing for submission, cat-and-mouse for review, etc) of your app here.
Tab 3: Testflight
Testflight is what you will use if you appetite to analysis your stickers with added users. It offers centralized testing and alien testing options. Centralized testing agency testing it aural your own aggregation with registered users (only specific roles) up to 100 people. Alien testing allows you to go up to 2000 testers, but you will accept to abide your beta for analysis by Apple afore it’s fabricated accessible to the testers.
Now that you’ve gotten the set up done on iTunes connect, you will charge to set up your sticker book on Xcode.
If you’re not active into Xcode yet with your Apple ID, go to Preference > Annual > Bang on > Sign in.
Go to Activity Navigator > Your sticker file. You will see all the fields that you charge to fill.
Fill the Bundle Identifier acreage with the aforementioned Bundle ID you created earlier.
Uncheck “Automatically administer signing,“ and accept the accessories contour that you accept created earlier.
Mine looks like this:
Now that you accept set that up, you will accept to adapt the advice for the addendum too, like so:
If you haven’t, set the admeasurement of your stickers. You can do this any time in the project. Here’s how it looks (on the appropriate panel):
Now let’s assuredly upload the body to iTunes Connect!
Make abiding to baddest “generic iOS device” beneath Set the Active Scheme, again Baddest your .xcstickers binder > go to Artefact > Archive.
Go to Window > Organizer. A new window should arise and you should see your stickers on the larboard panel.
Click on Validate to see if all is acceptable with your stickers. If there are issues, Xcode will acquaint you.
Now bold all is acceptable with your build, it’s time to upload it to iTunes connect! Bang on Upload to App Store… But don’t worry, what it absolutely agency is it will upload the stickers iTunes Affix first, area there will be a analysis process.
Once it’s done uploading, accord it some time, and it should arise on your iTunes Affix account.
On iTunes Connect, you will be able to baddest the body that you’ve aloof uploaded for submission.
If you adjudge to analysis it afore you abide your app, here’s area Testflight will appear in. Look through all your capacity and accomplish abiding they are OK, because you can’t change them already your stickers are actuality reviewed.
Once you’re ready, you can bang the abide button.
And that’s it! All you accept to do now is to delay for the analysis process. It was appealing quick for mine, about three days. In the meantime, it’s a acceptable abstraction to use this cat-and-mouse time to set up your agreements, tax, and cyberbanking capacity with Apple. There will be some added forms to be abounding (yay) but that would be the aftermost of it!
If you fabricated it this far, I acknowledge you and ambition you a abundant adventure with your iMessage stickers! It is my achievement that added artists, designers, illustrators can get their assignment out there on altered mediums, and accept ascendancy over their work.
This commodity was originally arise on Medium. Republished with permission.
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