Finding the right colors to use can make or break a new design. Color also plays an important role in your audience’s reaction to your content. Among psychologists and marketers, it’s generally known that blue, widely accepted in web design, is neutral or even soothing, whereas red, associated with stimulation, might quicken the viewer’s pulse. But finding the right colors to display isn’t always as simple as choosing red, orange, yellow, green, blue, or purple; within each of these, hundreds, if not thousands of different shades, are available. Fortunately for designers, a few awesome tools can help in the hunt for that perfect palette!
Kuler is a cloud-based application that helps you find color inspiration anywhere. Find color themes using an iPhone or your web browser. You can create and share your own combinations of colors, browse through community themes, sync your themes directly to Adobe Illustrator and immediately use them in your designs.
COLOURlovers is a creative community where people share colors, palettes and patterns. You can also explore articles about color and take part in discussions about the latest color trends. Check out their basic color palette tool and more advanced one called COPASO.
This is a neat web app that quickly lets you find new color schemes. It also has some cool options for exploring random palettes, support for variations of colorblindness, different color spaces and export options that include HTML & CSS, XML, text, Photoshop and GIMP.
TinEye Labs provides a few really cool tools to search for images by color and extract colors from any image. Plus, its reverse image search allows you to sort over 10 million Creative Commons images from Flickr by color, a feature which can prove to be really helpful.
This site provides a wealth of color tools, resources and articles. You can test out how different combinations of colors look on the screen with the Combo Tester. And, if you’re looking for colorcombo ideas, make sure to stop by the Combo Library, which contains hundreds of color swatches, along with their hex values needed for design.
What’s your favorite color resource?