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Creating Colour Palettes Using Cyotek Palette Editor

 

In this tutorial we'll give an overview of creating colour palettes using the free to download and use Cyotek Palette Editor

 

This is the second in a series of tutorials on creating palettes, the first looked at How To Generate Colour Palettes With Palettable, Colormind, And Coolors, and the next and final tutorial will look at using Gimp to create and use colour palettes

 

The intention is that all three tutorials will provide an understanding of how to create palettes that consist of colours that work well together. The last tutorial will show how these colour palettes can be installed in software such as Gimp, so colour is one less thing to worry about during the creative process.

Creating Colour Palettes Using Cryotek Palette Editor

Cryotek is a free app that works in a similar way to the online colour editors covered in part one, with the main differences being you don't have to be online to use it, and the palettes it generates can be saved in native formats of established graphics software.
 
Follow these easy steps to get started.
 


 1/ When Cyotek is opened it will look something like the above. If there is a different or no palette visible to the left don't worry, we'll create one in a moment.

 


2/ To  create a new palette select File > New Palette.

 

 

3/ A small window will appear with some basic settings for the new palette, such as the number of colours to be included and the default colour.

 


4/ Since we're creating a palette from one starting colour, and don't want  lots of empty spaces in the final palette, we'll enter 1 in the number of colors in palette section.



5/ To create a default colour for the palette, click in the hex area and remove the word 'white'. Now copy the hex of the starting colour from wherever the colour originated from and paste it in this hex space. 

 

If the idea of finding the hex value of a colour is new to you, there are many ways to find and copy it. For example, any graphics software of worth will have an eyedropper function that allows you to click on a colour and find its hex, RGB, and HSL values. There are also browser addons that allow users to select colours from web pages.

 

 Alternatively, experiment with the colour wheel, or the RGB and HSL sliders to find a colour to start with.

 


6/ When you're ready click OK.

 


7/ Now click OK in the New Palette window.



8/ Cyotek should now look something like the above, with the starting colour shown top left. The options for editing the colour are again displayed, and as you would expect playing with these will alter the starting colour's values.



9/ Click on the Schemes tab and some recommended palette options will be displayed. 

 

If no palettes are visible or black, click on the starting colour and they should appear.

 

Click on any of the colours and they can again be edited with the colour wheel, RGB and HSL sliders. As one colour changes all the other colours will change so that the palettes continualy show matching colour schemes.



10/ To add one of the schemes to the palette on the right, click on the appropriate Add button. Here the Harmonious scheme has been added, and all the colours are now shown to the left.



11/ We can now save these colours as a palette to use in other applications. Here we're going to save it as a Gimp palette. Start by selecting File > Save.



12/ The above window will open where you can navigate to where you want to save the palette.



13/ Before saving the palette, from the drop down menu, shown above, select the software the palette will be used in. Here we're going to save it as a Gimp palette.

 

The file has been named Example Palette. When you're ready hit Save.

 

Creating A Colour Palette From An Image

As with some of the online alternatives, Cyotek can also create palettes from images. Following these simple steps will show how.

 


1/  Select File > New > From Image.




 2/ In the window that opens, hit the Browse button to nagivate to where the image is stored on your PC.


Once the image has loaded, the palette can be edited by ticking the Reduce 256 colors box, (recommended unless you have use for a palette that consists of 1000s of colours). Increasing the Pixelate number will also help to create a manageable palette.


When you're ready hit OK.



3/ The palette generated from the image will now be displayed to the left of the Cyotek window. Each colour can be edited with the colour wheel, and the RGB and HSL sliders, in the same way as the palette created from one colour.



4/ When you're pleased with the palette it can be saved as a file to be used in graphics software in the same way as shown earlier.


That essentially covers the basics for using Cyotek Palette Editor and creating palettes that can be used elswhere. In the final part of this series on colour palettes we'll look at Gimp, how to use it to create palettes and how to import colour palettes such as those created in Cyotek.

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How To Generate Colour Palettes With Palettable, Colormind, And Coolors

 

Using colour palettes to generate harmonious colour schemes is a time saving process when creating digital imagery and graphics, and is especially useful when the same set of colours need to be used on a number of projects. 

 

A basic example of this could be graphics used to brand a club or store. Once the colour scheme has been established, a palette makes it easy to add the same colours to new logos, posters and whatever else comes to mind.


To help get a perspective on generating colour palettes, the subject is going to be covered in three tutorials:

In this first tutorial we'll look at three well known and easy to use online platforms, and cover the essentials of using them to start creating palettes.

Palettable

Palettable is a very straightforward website that allows visitors to generate palettes of five colours. This may not seem much, but Palettable is quite a stripped down palette generator for anyone who doesn't need bells and whistles.


1/ When the Palettable page is first opened it will display a random colour with its hex value.


2/  To edit the starting colour click on the icon below the hex value and drag the cursor within the rectangle. The cursor in the colour slider can also be dragged  to change the initial colour.

 

 

3/ When you find a colour you want to keep, hit the Like button. Hitting the Dislike button will start the process from scratch with another random colour.

 


4/ A second colour will now be displayed. Clicking the Dislike button will remove this colour and another will be suggested.

 

  

5/ As with the starting colour, the second one can be edited by clicking the icon under the hex value.

 

 

6/ Once you've finished editing the second colour, click the Like or Dislike button again, then repeat the above steps until there are five colours. To save the palette hit the Export  button.

 


 7/ The palette can now be exported as a link or a PNG image. Although it may not be clear how the PNG file can be of any use, in the final tutorial in this series we'll be showing how the image can be used to create a Gimp palette.

 

Assuming the PNG button has been selected, now navigate to where you want the image to be saved on the PC, name it and click OK.


You've now created your first colour scheme in Palettable.

Colormind

Colormind is another simple colour palette generator, although it does have a few more features than Palettable. One thing it lacks however, is the option to export palettes. This is not much of a problem though, because by using software such as Greenshot to grab and save a defined area of the screen, this can easily be bypassed. Once a PNG of the palette has been saved, as with Palettable it can be used to create a Gimp palette.

As with Palettable, Colormind palettes are also limited to five colours.

 


1/ When Colormind is first opened a random palette will be generated at the top of the page, with the hex of each colour clearly shown. If this palette doesn't appeal, hit the Generate button for a new one.



2/ If you like just one or two colours generated in the palette, hit the padlock icon beneath the ones you want to keep before hitting the Generate button again.



3/ Each colour can be edited by clicking the icon highlighted in red above, then dragging the cursor to find a more suitable hue. The marker in the colour band can also be dragged to search for a new colour.


 

4/ The order of  the palette can be changed by clicking the arrow icons under each colour, highlighted in red.

These are essentially the main tools within Colormind that can be used to create palettes, although there is one more that allows users to generate limited palettes from images..

Generating Colour Palettes from Images With Colormind

Using images to generate colour palettes be a useful tool, and its one that Colormind can handle. The one drawback however is that again, it will only generate a palette of five colours.



1/ To the top right of Colormind is an Image Upload link button.



2/ This page will open. Hit the Image Upload button to the left.



3/ The image will load under the palette.



4/ Five colours from the image will be displayed in the palette. 



5/ There aren't any options to edit the palette, but if the Generate button is clicked another selection of colours from the image will make up a new palette.

Coolors 

 

 

Of the three online colour palette generaters discussed here, Coolors has the most comprehensive features, and whilst the other two are good for creating limited palettes quickly, this option far out strips them. In fact the only real downside to Coolors is the small screens that appear the first time its opened. After that, apart from a few small advert windows that can also be closed, they won't appear again, (Coolors is free to use, so I don't blame the owner for trying to make a little ad revenue from it).

 

1/ To start creating a colour palette, hit the Start the generator button, show above.




2/ When the generator is opened a random pallette is displayed, along with its hex and colour name.



3/ Hover the cursor over a colour and a column of icons appear: 

  • The padlock locks a colour, so the generator can find other matching colours.
  • The double squares icon copies the hex value.
  • The double headed arrow enables a colour to be dragged to a different position in the palette.
  • The star saves the colour to favourites
  • The grid icon displays a range of shades of the colour within the column. Clicking one of the shades will replace the original colour.
  • The X removes the colour from the palette.

 


4/ If you know the hex of a colour that you'd like to form a palette from, click the hex shown in any column in the palette. In the window that opens, add the new hex.



5/ Click the padlock icon in the same column to lock the colour. Now hit the spacebar on the keyboard to generate a palette.


 

6/ A new palette will be displayed, including the locked colour originally added from the hex.


 

7/  When a new palette is generated, each colour you want to keep can be locked. Hit the spacebar again, then lock each colour you want in the palette. If more colours are needed, hover the cursor over the border of two colours and a plus sign will appear. Click it and another column will be added to the palette. Altogether, there can be ten colours in the palette. Repeat these steps until you have all the colours you want.



8/ Towards the top right of the Coolors page is an Export button. Click it and the above window will open, with a lot more options than Palletable and Colormind. However, we're still going to use the export image option.

 

  

9/ This window will now open with the options to name the palette and select a color space.  Here we've stuck with hex. Under Labels each colour can be named.

 

When you're ready, hit Export. Navigate to where you want to save the palette to on the PC, then hit OK.

 

 Generating a Colour Palette From An Image With Coolor

This is another fully formed feature of Coolor, which allows users to generate colour palettes from images. Although the full range of image colours won't be included in the palette, up to ten can be, and all colours can be edited.
 

 1/ Towards the top middle of the Coolors page is a camera icon. Click this to start creating a palette from an image.



2/ The above window will appear. Navigate to where the image is stored on the PC then drag it onto the window.



3/ The image will load into the window with a palette of five colours.


 

4/ Click on a colour in the palette then click on an area of the image, and the colour under the cursor will replace the original.


Dragging the slider handle, (bottom of the window), will scroll through colours of the palette generated from the image. The circle in the image will move to the position of the colour as you scroll. Whilst many colours will be displayed as you scroll, its worth remembering only ten can be exported as a palette.

 

Click on the + icon to add more colours to the palette, and the minus icon to remove them.



5/ When you're ready to export the palette hit Next, top right. From the drop down list hit Export Palette.



19/ The Export window will open again with the same export options as before. Just follow the same steps as above to save the palette.



Thats all there is to generating palettes online and saving them to your PC. Although all of the palettes here have been exported as images, they easily can be converted to palettes in graphics software such as Gimp, and we'll be covering this in the third and final tutorial in this series.


As a final note, palettes can also be exported from Coolors as a colour scheme alongside the image it was generated from. Instead of clicking on Export Palette from the drop down menu mentioned above, select Create Collage. Play with the options in the window that opens, and when you're ready hit Export

 

In the second in this series of colour palette tutorials we'll be looking at free palette generating software called Cyotek Palette Editor.

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