Finding Your Color Inspiration

On a lot of projects you are provided an existing color palette from a client, but for personal projects, or when you’re given free reign over color design, how do you narrow down a palette? Going out for a walk or browsing the acrylics section at your nearest craft store is a great option, but sometimes you need something more immediate. Say, if you’re a the mercy of Oklahoma’s wind/rain/what-season-is-this-seriously weather and you don’t want to leave your desk? –Everyone has different methods, but here are my top 5 sources for color inspiration from the comfort of your computer chair.

Colourlovers

CL

Colourlovers has been around a while, and it shows. There are over 4,023,312

Palettes as of 2016, not to mention countless shapes, patterns and templates to browse to your heart’s content. This site is best for sheer amount of content.

Instagram

IG

Searching the #colorpalettes tag can be fun, but I also like looking at my own and others past instagram photos for potential places to grab colors from.

Coolors

cool

Coolors is great for quick and dirty palette generation. There are options to both generate and browse other palettes, plus it is available on Apple and Android devices!

Tumblr

tumb

Would you rather just have color palettes delivered to your while you browse other stuff? I follow a lot of color palette related tags on Tumblr, and love it. You can follow anything from the generic to the specific (palettes from Wes Anderson movies, anyone? http://wesandersonpalettes.tumblr.com/) and it’s great to get unexpected inspiration when you’re already browsing cat gifs.

Adobe Color

Accc

Adobe knows what they’re doing and it shows. What I especially like about Color CC (formerly Adobe Kuler) are the fine tuning controls, plus the option to have changing one color augment the others in the set. This makes generating complementary or compound palettes a snap!

Of course, many of these methods are a great starting point—but don’t be surprised if you end up switching things up while you’re actually working on your project. I frequently get things laid out only to find I’m not (or maybe the client isn’t!) as in love with a color palette and need to tweak it a bit. So keep your eyes peeled for that perfect color inspiration but most importantly, be prepared to play around with color and have some fun!

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