Do you ever see a design that seems to have the perfect colors? Sometimes it’s because of an added pop of color, but I tend to like color schemes that stem from one image or focal point. It’s much easier than you might think to create a color palette from a photo. Here’s how.
Step one: open Photoshop. Open the photo that you’d like to pick your color palette from. You might want to duplicate the photo just in case any accident happens! Better safe than sorry.
Step two: index colors. Go to image > mode > index. You might want to convert your image to RGB from CMYK in this step. If you do, you’ll also need to change it to “indexed.” In the dialog box that pops up, choose “local perceptual” in the palette drop down.
Change the number of colors to 256. If you’d like a smaller color palette, change the number to something smaller (20 is usually a good starting point). Set the “forced” drop down to none. Set “dither” to none. Click OK.
Step three: open your color index. Choose image > mode > color table to view your newly created selection of colors. Click on a color to see its RGB, CMYK and other values.
From here, you can save your color palette, or take note of the color values. I just wrote down my RGB color values for each swatch and entered them in manually, but you can also load your swatches into your color panel on Photoshop, Illustrator or InDesign after you save your color palette.
Want to see a few finished color palettes? See below (the numbers under the color swatches are RGB values):
Aurora Color Palette
Cactus Color Palette
Harry Styles Color Palette
Palm Springs Color Palette
Rugs Color Palette
Note: images used to create color palettes in this post were taken from Tumblr.