One of the first steps to branding yourself and developing a visual design direction is creating a color palette. Color is so powerful and can be used to express emotion, personality & identity.
Below is a simple process to selecting & creating a custom color palette for your brand:
- Start looking at photos. These can be photos you find on Pinterest, Instagram, Google, your own photo library, anywhere! Make a collection of photos that have colors you’re drawn to.
- Determine the feeling you want your brand to possess. Do you want a light, airy feeling with light pastels and white space? Do you want a brand that’s calming, full of shades of blue and dark tones? Match these feelings with the photos you’ve collected. Which photos make you feel the way you want your brand to make your audience feel?
- Select one or two photos that are in-line with your brand’s emotional identity and pull 4-5 colors from those photos. I like to bring my photos into Photoshop and use the “Eyedropper” tool to pull colors I like.
- Play around with different shades of the colors you pull until you have a combination that is complimentary and matches your brand identity.
- Using the “Color Picker” in Photoshop, locate the RGB color codes for each of your colors and copy this somewhere for later use.
A few things to remember when selecting a color palette…
- Be ruthless! Once you select a color palette DON’T STRAY FROM USING THOSE COLORS. It can be difficult to commit to just 4 or 5 colors, but straying from your colors will confuse your audience and make you look unprofessional and unorganized.
- Keep your color codes somewhere that you can easily access them. You’ll need these anytime you’re creating graphics, marketing material, site updates, etc.
If you’re just getting started, I’ve put together 5 FREE COLOR PALETTES for you to download and play around with.
Best of luck in your color picking journey!