I saw the images by photographer Dominik Tarabanski featured in this post months ago and have been thinking about the color palettes ever since.
There’s something about the bold hues that draw me in — they’re soft and slightly unexpected yet thoroughly modern.
When I see a color combinations as unique as these, I often wonder how the creator behind it pulled it together.
What was their inspiration?
How did they know it would even work?
I’ve always struggled with color palettes — they just don’t come naturally to me. If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile, you can see that outside of the client work I produce, my personal style veers towards a very minimalist palette of black and white.
When it comes to choosing unique palettes for branding projects (I often have 5 going in the studio at any given time), there are 3 tools I use to source the right mix of colors.
I’ve been using Colour Lovers to gather unique combinations for years because I love the ease of searching by keywords. Depending on what my client is drawn to, I’ll type in a variety of search terms just to see what comes up and screenshot my top picks to sample from. This process has a bit of market research thrown in, too since you can see which palettes have the highest number of “loves” and votes from the community.
Kuler isn’t just another site full of cool color palettes — its secret weapon is the camera icon in the top right. When you click on it, you can upload a photo that’s full of colors you love and it will pinpoint the key swatches for you. Creating your own original palettes has never been easier.
When I’m doing image research for a client project, I usually start with Pinterest which is also super convenient for color palettes. Tons of folks keep inspiration boards dedicated to the subject and you can check out my color study board here. I’m always adding combos for future reference.
Between these three sources, I never feel stumped when it comes to building out a fresh color palette and I hope they help you do the same!
Your turn: Do you have any special techniques for pulling together color combinations?
Photos: Dominik Tarabanski for Thisispaper.