Dropbox illustration library

Championed a bold, creative and more efficient approach to illustration at Dropbox.

BackgroundDropbox was lacking a unified illustration style across the customer journey. While many loved the imagination and playful quality of the previous style, some users struggled to connect it with their own context or experience, leading to occasional misunderstandings and tonal misfires.

At the same time we were revising our illustration style, I saw an opportunity to overhaul our creation, request and delivery process to better serve our business and customer goals.


Prior to our visual refresh, illustrations were hard-coded and were created net new with each request, resulting in redundant, difficult-to-update illustrations and illustrator burnout.

Solution Created a library that supports:
  • End-to-end cohesion from marketing into product
  • Increases product team velocity
  • Reduces tech debt
  • Brings humanity, warmth, and a bit of soul to abstract technological concepts
  • Communicates complex, dry topics with personality & charm

Results Lead a team of ~20 in creating a reusable, concept-based illustration library for use across brand, marketing and product. Went from 350+ unique illustrations hard coded with no central repository for two products, to 225+ illustrations delivered through Dropbox Interface Guidelines (Figma & code) across nine+ products.

Illustration library includes metadata for search (names, tags), standard sizing, support for light/dark modes, alt text, support for lottie animation, a new creation, request and delivery process.

Drove web, mobile and prompt team adoption and migration to the new system.

Reduced our illustration file size on mobile by 50%, decreased iOS app size by ~12 MB.

With this evolution, we have taken the best of the past and built on it, creating a more sophisticated, warm, and inclusive expression without losing the soul and charm that customers have always enjoyed.

TeamKristine Sale, Gabrielle Matte, Fanny Luor, Justin Tran, Olenka Malarecka, Gabriela Tylenda, April Rosenstock, Felize Tolentino, Vu Tran, Hector Matos, Mark Pleskac, Cate McGehee, Chad Wong, Stan Yeung, Lauren LoPrete, Cat Le, Liz Gilmore

©Rita Troyer, All Rights Reserved