5 Crucial Color Tools
So your design is ready to move forward, but is still in grayscale. You have a logo concept, but not quite sure how you want to make it come to life. The UI mockups are all set, and it’s time to introduce the next step. These are just a few instances where color will make a magnificent difference. Yet, we often find ourselves stumped on what color combinations work best, spend crazy amounts of time creating color combinations from scratch, or simply struggle to even settle on the primary color for a new brand.
Behold, look no further, for I have listed 5 amazing color tools that we have access to here on the handy dandy thing we call the internet! These should satisfy many, if not all, of your colorful needs.
Perhaps the most simple tool to use of the five I will list today, the moment you enter the website you are flooded with flat color options to choose from. All colors offered will be presented on the home screen and can be discovered just by scrolling down, but they also have a quick navigation at the top if you need to narrow down your search to a specific color range. The name, hex codes, and RGBs are also listed and easily accessible with a quick copy-and-paste. This site is honestly the one I most frequent because of its ease of usability.
The COLOURlovers platform is an amazing community space where users share all of their palette creations, patterns, shapes, and more. Explore over a million palettes and colors for inspiration or to use as is if permitted by the creator (some palettes may be listed as not allowed for commercial use). You can also create your own! Searching for palettes can be easy and fun using their filter function to narrow down options. See example below:
ColorBrewer is another easy-to-use tool that many different types of creators find useful, especially for those who are in an analytics field. The color tool offers color schemes and allows for options to choose from including sequential, diverging, and qualitative depending on the nature of your data. Not only that, but it also includes options to check if your color schemes are colorblind safe, print friendly, and photocopy safe. How cool (and crucial) is that?! See below the details regarding each icon meaning:
4. Adobe Color CC (formerly Kuler)
If you’re in the design space and you haven’t heard of Kuler, then who are you really?! Just kidding. No judgments here. This was actually the very first color tool that I had ever heard of, and used in my college design classes back in the day. It’s pretty freakin’ awesome. You can easily create and download your own color schemes, explore others’ color palette creations, and save your themes online. The color wheel is especially helpful if you are looking for particular schemes set within parameters, such as analogous, monochromatic, complimentary, etc. color rules. If anything, the wheel is just fun to play with in all it’s slider glory, and serves as a nice stress reliever! 😛
Coolors is just that – super cool! It’s a color schemes generator that you can access online, on your iOS App, in Adobe (add-on) and even as a chrome extension! When you go to the “Generate” page, you can easily adjust the color palette by changing tones and shades, the hues, and order the colors appear on the palette. Not only that, but Coolors also has this really neat feature where you just hit the spacebar (online) and new palettes will generate at random. Heck yes! You can really capture some interesting and practical color schemes at just a touch of a button. This site has recently become a favorite of mine and I suggest you check it out if you haven’t already!
There you have it folks! Just a few of my favorites when it comes to researching and experimenting with colors for projects. Have you tried any of these, and if so, which ones? I’d also love to hear about any other color resources that you might be using as a staple. Let’s keep this secret stash going! ✦
About the Author | LinkedIn
Nicolette Shasky is a creative soul with a specialty in visual storytelling and UI/UX Design. She currently works as a Visual + Analytics Designer at Interactions Marketing in San Diego, California.