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How to Work with Adobe Color CC (Adobe Kuler) to Enhance your Designs

Posted: November 11th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Creative Process, Tips and Tricks | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

I love to use Adobe Color CC app to create color schemes for my designs. That’s pretty easy – a little creativity and modern technology help to save a lot of time generating themes for a project.

The rules for the app are based on a color wheel representation, or how colors arranged according to their chromatic relationship. You can design the theme based on analogous, monochromatic, triad, complementary, compound colors, shades or develop a palette according to your custom rules, which let you add swatches in whichever order.

To start working with Adobe Color CC app you should have an Adobe ID.
After signing in you can check the most popular themes in Adobe community or develop a new one. Well, the last is more interesting as for my mind.

There are a lot of ways to create your own theme, let me share with you my favorite one.

Firstly – being a photographer – I like to work with images :) The second reason is that sometimes you have a particular image that should be used as a major part of the overall look and feel. By using colors from that photograph you create a sweet cohesive color palette that works well.

I use this photo for the tutorial:

'Two boats'

1. Click on the Camera icon on the right hand side and upload your picture:
How to upload picture to Adobe Color CC

2. Adobe Color uses themes comprising of five colors and will automatically pick them from your image. Scroll through the different color moods (based on the harmony rules: colorful, bright, muted, deep, dark or custom) to see if you like any of them better. To change the selected colors, you should click and drag the points around on the image.

Adobe Color: how to create theme

3. If you want to adjust a color more accurate with color sliders, then click on the Color Wheel icon on the right hand side of the page.

Adobe Color: fine tune

Here you’ll see a color wheel and color slider controls below – you can fine tune your colors now.

4. When you are more then less happy, you can name your new theme, add keywords, save and share it. You can find my ‘Golden etude’ palette here.

5. To download your swatch as an Adobe Swatch Exchange file, click on the download icon and save to your computer where you can find it.

Adobe Swatch Exchange file

6. Open the folder on your desktop and locate the file:

Adobe Color: locate the file

7. Click and drag this file to your Swatches palette in Photoshop. The result is shown below:

Swatches palette

That’s it! You can create and use your unique color themes now.

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4 Comments on “How to Work with Adobe Color CC (Adobe Kuler) to Enhance your Designs”

  1. 1 Kiran said at 6:52 am on August 14th, 2015:
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    i have been trying to download a swatch that i created for some time. i have been following the steps you mentioned but for some reason the download button is not there. i can see the info, edit, copy link and delete button, but the download button is not visible. i am using photoshop cc 2014 and also have the colour theme extension. any help would be much appreciated.

  2. 2 Julia said at 10:47 pm on August 17th, 2015:
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    Hi Kiran,
    They changed the service while ago. You have to use Creative Cloud – according to the chosen plan (see https://creative.adobe.com/plans?promoid=KSPAK). There is no possibility to save a color palette for free for now.

  3. 3 Lissa Contreras said at 4:51 am on May 19th, 2016:
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    I have Adobe InDesign CC 2015. I was able to create a palette but I don’t have the option to download it either…any idea what I’m doing wrong?

  4. 4 Neil Hoskins said at 5:34 pm on June 27th, 2016:
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    @ Julia:
    Thanks for explaining that mystery. It really stinks – I already pay a fortune for Captivate and cannot afford CC on top of that. Adobe, if any of you find your way to this thread any time, please put Captivate on CC NOW!

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