Blog, surface pattern design

Creating colour palettes in Illustrator PART 2

There is colour inspiration everywhere! In nature, in shops, in homes, online.

There is lots of inspiration on the net, but I often prefer to take photos with my phone of colours that I love.

How to create a colour palette in Illustrator

Once I have an image or some images of colours that I want to experiment with, I add them to Illustrator by dragging and dropping onto my art board.

Next I create 10-12 little rectangles using the shape tool – these will become my colour swatches.

Using a photo as colour inspiration

Switching between the select tool (shortcut v) and the eye dropper tool (shortcut I), I add colours from the photos to each rectangle.

Create variety

I have learnt so far that a strong colour palette needs a mix of tones and contrasts, so adding lights, mids and darks of each colour helps.

Add to swatches

Once you’re happy with your colours, add them to your swatches.

If you want to save the palette to use in other projects, create a new colour group by clicking on the folder icon (give the palette a name) and save.

I added my colour palette by selecting all of the rectangles and dragging into swatches

I love bright colours, especially blues and greens – what colours do you love? I’d love to hear!

Take care, Michelle

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