Color is a powerful tool. It can alter the way we feel and create emotions within us from across the spectrum. Color is also subjective and what people see is often very different depending on them
From the moment, the first painters mixed their pigments from the earth and minerals present on it, there have been many questions about colors. In those thousands of years, we have come a very long way. It is possible for me to literally “paint” a logo design using the mouse of a computer in every shade from basil to seafoam. Even the theory of color has evolved.
In fact, things are now so advanced that we at Designhill have built our own logo maker tool, which allows designers or customers to create a custom made professional logo within minutes, thanks to the power of artificial intelligence. It’s remarkably easy and only takes a couple of minutes to design a logo. Logos are generated on thousands of different color palettes which makes it easy for a user to preview a logo in different color combinations.
In modern times designers utilize color theory in order to come up with color palettes that are unique to their clients each and every day. This involves selecting warm colors over cool shades or creating a set of hues and tints for use over the span of print and web. These exercises enable these professionals to conceive of perfect palettes designed to push out brands, help logo designs pop and stand apart from the others, and even improve the experience of the user.
Every color has a purpose. It needs to be used wisely. However, that is easier said than done, even for a designer who works with color quite often, its not a easy decision to make. The key is to keep it simple.
When I begin to focus on the color of the design I am working on, I like to remember this metaphor: Selecting samples of paint from your local hardware or home-improvement store can overwhelm you but picking colors from your crayon box that you have in your home instead is an easier job. Pick from what speaks to you in order to get your foot in the door when it comes to full-blown exploration of color.
If you are thinking of handling choosing color all by yourself, there are some tips from Designhill that you can use in order to make sure you are successful in representing your brand’s attributes and ideas through a color palette:
Start With What is Familiar
No doubt you have a favorite color. Is it red? Blue? Perhaps it is a shade of orange, or yellow. It’s really that easy.
It’s likely that before you even secured a business license or began contemplating your ideas for a logo, you had a color in mind that you hoped to be able to use. That is very similar to how Coca-Cola came up with the brilliant shade of red that they are famous for. Frank Robinson, the individual who first drew Coca-Cola’s logo, simply liked the contrast of red against white. That was all there was to it. Today, this is a hue that is trademarked and protected. So if Coca-Cola’s red is the shade of crayon that speaks to you, then you know which color you need to pick.
Complete Your Research
When this exercise is completed, you are going to have a color or set of colors that represent your brand. You won’t have the liberty of changing these colors up in the future. If you do, you will lose equity. That’s why it is of the utmost importance to complete your research.
Begin with what you know. What are the values of your brand? What are the words that you would like to be associated with your brand, especially by customers? If you have an editorial style guide or document of the like set aside that describes the voice of your brand, this is the time to reference it. Another excellent source for your research is Pinterest or even Instagram. Making use of these boards can give you insight into color combinations you may not have ever considered. You’ll also be able to view the combinations and palettes that are currently trending.
Another step to take when it comes to your research is to take a gander at the competition. What colors in your industry are already being utilized? Yellow in conjunction with gray? Perhaps green and blue? Make note of what you see and build upon this for your own brand. Keep in mind that you want your look to be unique to your business. You do, however, want your chosen colors to have the right feel for what you are after.
Tools for Additional Inspiration
As mentioned previously, Pinterest, as well as Instagram, can be used for inspiration when you are choosing your brand’s colors. While these may provide a much-needed surge in creativity, nothing can replace metaphorically getting your hands dirty. As a designer, I utilize tools each and every day in order to aid me in shipping projects and impressing my clients. A good number of these tools that I use are available for public use, and this includes the ones that will allow you to test out a few colors before actually committing to them for your brand. They are:
Adobe web-based application, this is a tool that is highly interactive and fairly accessible. You can toggle through color rules, such as complementary (such as blue and orange) or monochrome (different shades of the same color), and play with individual sliders so that you can make a palette of up to five colors.
This tool is, in essence, a social network for individuals who absolutely love color. Here you will be able to create, share, and even compare color palettes created across the whole community. Venture over to the “Palettes” page and sort through 4 million custom color combinations plus, if you wish.
Coolors is a tool that is similar to Adobe Color, but it contains a simpler interface and iOS app. You have the ability to slide around color blocks, change hues, and even lock these blocks into place. This tool’s functionality is quite nice to use, and the site itself has claimed to be a “super fast color scheme generator.”
This is similar to the tools mentioned previously, but it gives you the ability to generate palettes using your mouse at random. This is excellent for instant inspiration. More exciting? Its ability to create a palette using a photograph as the source. Upload a photo and allow Colormind to do the hard work for you.
This is very simple tool build by our team at Designhill. It shows the most common colors which are used around the web along with different shades of that particular color. You can just hover on the colors to see there HEX or RGB codes.
Use the Principle of 60-30-10
When it comes to disciplines, designers of all sorts have used the principle of 60-30-10 while working with color. It’s not a secret of the trade and it is fairly simple to follow along with, provided you already have colors in mind to use.
The rule suggests you use:
- 60 percent of your primary color,
- 30 percent of your secondary color,
- 10 percent of your accent color.
These proportions aid you in creating a design theme that is uniform while providing the right amount of visual appeal and contrast. This makes for a brand logo that is clean and professional that leaves a lasting impression.
Capitalize on Common Associates
Many colors carry meanings that are widely accepted, as well as symbolism and other significance. When in doubt, use the 60-30-10 principle, trust your gut, and take a peek at common associations with the color you are considering. Take blue, for example. Looking at the common associations with blue can aid you in choosing your colors. Many businesses select blue given that it gives a cool, crisp feel when gazed upon. In a similar vein, brown and green are often chosen by food companies, especially natural ones, as these colors throwback to shades of earth.
Think of the product you are trying to market and the goods or services you plan to offer. Asking yourself a simple questions like “Why you started your business in the first place?” can enable you to select the appropriate palette for your brand.
There are quite a few techniques you can make use of in order to discolor the perfect combination of colors for your brand. From free tools on the internet to using your gut, selecting color does not have to be a scary project. Try things out, make the process as painless as you can, and most of all, have fun. And remember, all you need to get started is a box of crayons.