The Cooler Way to Pick Colors

Deciding what colors should go together is sometimes easier said than done. Choosing hues that go well together can make the difference between a mildly bearable Keynote presentation or Word document, and something that makes a professional and positive impact. If you need a little color inspiration, odds are someone has already designed a palette that will work great for you, and chances are good youill find it with kuler.

Adobe kuler is a Web-based application that catalogs complementary color schemes so you can browse or search through to find something thatis just right for your project. I like using Adobeis free kuler Dashboard widget to hunt for color combinations. Once I find what Iim looking for, it shows me the hex color values so I can add them to my project.

The kuler widget is great for finding great color combinations.

The trick is to click the info button in the upper right corner of the widget to reveal the search field. Enter a search term that is related in some way to the colors you want. For example, try entering "grass," "sky," "clowns," or pretty much anything else you can think of.

If you donit find a scheme that meets your needs, you can try creating your own. Just point your Web browser to the Adobe kuler Web site, and select the Create option. The kuler interface includes a color wheel and color sliders so you can set how close or far away from one another each color will be. As you move the sliders, all of the colors move in relation to each other, building your scheme on the fly.

Build your own color schemes on the kuler Web site.

If you want to save or share your color scheme with other people, youill need to create an Adobe ID -- itis free, just like kuler.

kuler makes it easy to find good looking color schemes, which is a great time saver. The Web interface is so cool, however, that itis easy to lose track of time experimenting with color combinations. Be sure to make some extra time to play around.

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