What's in a color?

color swatchOne of the biggest challenges in web design can be finding just the right colors for a site. So I thought I’d share some of my favorite color tools to help you put together your next design.

1. Slayer Office Tools This handy little tool allows you to put in a base color and get blended versions of the base color. The default blend colors are black and white, but these can be changed to suit your needs. Output in both hex and rgb. Great for when you like a color, but need it just a shade or two darker or lighter.

2. Color Schemer This is a nifty one for when you are looking for quickie complementary colors to accompany your base design. Input via hex or rgb, and you can lighten or darken the resulting palette.

3. Color Palette Generator This is a fun one. If you’re inspired by an online photo that you like, you just enter the url, and this cool tool will generate a list of colors taken from the photo. Along the same vein is Color Hunter, which allows you to upload a photo, and to see palettes generated from other peoples’ pictures.

4. Web Site Design Resources Directory If you’re looking for some color combinations that are a little out of the ordinary, but that pack a punch, check out the color scheme combinations that have been put together here. There’s also some very good reading in the accompanying Guide to Using Color in Web Design.

5. Color Wheel This handy color generator creates a palette of complementary, analogous, split complementary, monochrome and triadic colors for use on your site.

6. Donald Peterson’s Notes on Color This isn’t really a tool, except in the sense that it’s valuable reading for any web designer who wants to make better use of color. The articles are simply invaluable in understanding the importance of color in design, and gaining a fresh perspective on how to make the most of it.

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One Response to “What's in a color?”

  1. Kylie says:

    Great post Leanne. I often find colour to be the hardest aspect of a design to ‘pin’ down with some clients saying “Oh thats too darkish, can you …. make it lighter…”. Now I can refer to these nifty little tools you’ve collected and get them to decide once and for all!