1000 Heads: the book

1000 heads, my illustration book

Inspiring books for the creative type


1.11.07

Some useful and powerful online color tools: Kuler, Color Hunter, Colr, Colrpickr

Colo(u)r tools are always welcome, both for digital and non-digital media. Let's review some seriously addictive and useful sites to create and explore color palettes. They can be an excellent inspiration visit to get new colour schemes for your projects and apply them either to digital designs, decoration, painting, food, or whatever you want.

Kuler is so cool! It is all about color and inspiration: explore, create, and share color themes.
It's easy to use, but online help is provided, and there is also a good tutorial.

Now Adobe is publishing the kuler APIs (Application Programming Interfaces). These APIs allow you to submit requests to Kuler, which returns lists of feeds (highest rated, most popular, and newest color themes posted to the site) or searches themes. With time, some interesting results will appear! Some more information here.


The themes in Kuler are tagged, and you can search by those tags, usually given by association, look and feel.

With Color Hunter you can both create and search palettes made from images (5 colours).
The Kuler talk (forum) discussion about the uses of the application. You can subscribe the RSS feed of this forum. The palettes in Color Hunter are also tagged, and you can search particular schemes that contain a certain colour.

Colr.org offers a wonderful set of tools to create, play and experiment with color schemes. You can load images from Flickr: a specific image or a random one. Hover your mouse on the image you've just loaded and it is decomposed in a series of color swatches, so you can single a specific hue to create or search color schemes. You can then fine-tune the selected colors with a color dialog that pops up in the selection box.

Better still, you can load pre-made color schemes searching a specific tag or loading it at random. When the colors and palettes are loaded, you can see the individual colors with their hex codes, and save the complete scheme as an .aco color table (a format you can later load in Photoshop and other image-editing programs.) Let's load one of my images to see it in action:With colr.org you can even use a Google gadget to see what's new on the site right on your Google homepage. And you can subscribe a RSS feeds with the latest color schemes created.

Colr Pickr is a "Flickr toy": it provides a color wheel linked to photos in the Flickr website with similar overall colors. Very intuitive and funny. Of course, each of the images you load can be fed in turn into Colr.org or Color Hunter...

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