Sunday, October 5, 2008

Selecting a color palette with the help of Colourlovers

A sample of the colourlovers pack of Moo minicards. So much cooler than stealing Martha Stewart paint chips.

If you plan on doing the "Dots" October Monthly Special (and I hope you do), you will find yourself thinking about color. Not that you have to reserve some of the dots for color, but either way you will be making color choices. If you use color photos and the palette clashes from one image to the next, the end result may seem a bit "off." And you don't have to be a designer to sense the discord.

But how confident are you at choosing colors? Unless you're like my color-genius mother-in-law (who seems to have perfect recall of multiple paint decks and fabric swatches in the same way that some people have perfect pitch), you may find yourself stumped when faced with a color choice. And that's where Colourlovers comes in...

screen grab from is an amazingly rich site, complete with a blog that I have subscribed to ever since I finally got with the whole blogosphere thing. I especially love the palettes. Readers have submitted well over a half million palettes (you heard me right, more than 563,266 and counting) for your consideration.

The inventive color names are fun in their own right. I have always found the names of my wife's beauty products amusing (e.g. "I'm not really a waitress" nail polish), but with more than 500,000 palettes, the colourlovers site has got quirky names way beyond your standard beauty store fare. Here's a sampling:
You get the idea.

When you find a palette you like, you can click on it and see the HEX and RGB values for each color. Don't know what to do with those numbers? Check back for my next post: a "Starter" about sampling and changing colors.

Thanks to Lindsay, for pointing out the Adobe Kuler site/app. Check out the video intro about it.