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Using Color Palettes Are a Good Idea

By admin in  
March 14, 2015

We know we like color. It surrounds us everywhere. It is the spice of life. But, use the wrong ones in your project and “ouch!” what happened.

It doesn’t have to be that way. There are tools to help.

I know, we all think we are able to remember the color of what we see. ” I don’t need to take a sample to the store. I’ll remember the color of my living room.” A few of us can remeber. Very few. The rest of us are not able to remember the shade of our favorite blue jeans. Why? Because our brain says ” they are blue”. It gives us a very rough name and idea of what the color is and that’s it. The same is true when we try to use color in our art. The mind tells us a very rudimentary variation of what we see.



“We can differentiate millions of colors, but to store this information, our brain has a trick,” Jonathan Flombaum said. “We tag the color with a coarse label.” twitter-button

How can we work around that? We can use color palettes. There are many color combinations out there and we see them all the time when we go anywhere near a paint section in a store. But, there are also a lot of color combinations online too. One company that is really good to use to help with color combinations is Canva. They have so many cool color combinations for so many applications. I am always going to them, sending a few choices to my clients and then letting my clients tell me which combinations they prefer. Presto! A base line to work with. Usually four colors that we can agree on and move forward with using on a project.

Another cool company is Pantone. Pantone is the end all of color. Check out their site and you will go color mad. Not only do they have every color imaginable they tell you the color of the year, which is right on, but, they offer so many choices and matches that you could be lost in them for days picking the perfect set. After you do you will be happy. Now you have a palette to work from.

If you are working on a computer this will be easy. Take your main color choices that you got from your research and place their number in your color wheel. On a separate layer in the program place the actual color samples together in a corner. Now you have a color swatch station that you can take an ink dropper sample of whenever you want to go switch back to your man colors. 

Don’t get me wrong. That color palette is now a base. Use it to help you create. But, feel free to adjust the density and tone as you like. That’s the fun part. But, having a good solid base of a few strong colors that go together will allow you a freedom that will help tremendously with your art work. Allowing you to work on you composition instead of trying to remember the right color combo.


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