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Smileys and other small gifs or cartoons that are frequently used inline with text. To view these at actual size, see RationalWiki:Smileys.

If you would like to be able to add smileys quickly to your comments here at RationalWiki, click on My preferences -> Gadgets and under Editing gadgets tick the box Add a smiley toolbar. Don't forget to save your preferences. You should now see a goat above the edit screen.

Richard Ball, co-owner of an advertising and public relations firm in Worcester, designed the Smiley Face in 1963 to help ease the acrimonious aftermath following the merger of two insurance companies.

A vice president ordered a "friendship campaign" to ease tensions between the bickering workers and hired Richard Ball to come up with a suitable graphic for a button.

"I made a circle with a smile for a mouth on yellow paper, because it was sunshiny and bright," he recalled in a 1996 interview with The Associated Press. Turning the drawing upside down, the smile became a frown. Deciding that wouldn't do, Ball added two eyes and the Smiley Face was born.

"There are two ways to go about it," he said. "You can take a compass and draw a perfect circle and make two perfect eyes as neat as can be. "Or you can do it freehand and have some fun with it. Like I did," Ball said. "Give it character."

Harvey Ball died in April 2001, survived by his wife and 3 kids.

Harvey Ball: “Never in the history of mankind or art has any single piece of art gotten such widespread favor, pleasure, enjoyment, and nothing has ever been so simply done and so easily understood in art.”


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