Working with color

Your application lets you choose and create colors by using a wide variety of industry- standard palettes, color mixers, and color models. You can create and edit custom color palettes to store frequently used colors for future use.

In this section, you’ll learn about

• choosing colors

• creating custom color palettes

• using spot color channels

Choosing colors

You can choose background, foreground, and fill colors by using the color control area, color palettes, sampling, color viewers, color harmonies, or color blends.

Color control area

In the color control area, you can view the selected foreground, background, and fill colors, and you can choose new colors.

Default color palette

A color palette is a collection of color swatches. You can choose foreground, background, and fill colors by using the default color palette, which contains 99 colors from the RGB color model.

Fixed or custom color palettes

Fixed color palettes are provided by third-party manufacturers. Some examples of these are HKS Colors, Focoltone, PANTONE, and TRUMATCH. It may be useful to have on hand a manufacturer’s swatch book, which is a collection of color samples that shows exactly what each color looks like when printed.Custom color palettes can include colors from any color model or fixed color palette. You can save a custom color palette for future use. For more information about working with custom color palettes, see “Creating custom color palettes” on page 267 and “Opening and editing custom color palettes” in the Help.

Sampling colors

When you want to use a color that already exists in an object or image, you can sample the color to achieve an exact match. By default, you sample a single pixel from the image window.

When you sample a color from a photo, what looks to be a solid-colored area may actually be subtly shaded or dithered. In this case, it is useful to average the colors of pixels in a larger sample area. You can set the sample area to 3 × 3 pixels, or to 5 × 5 pixels for high-resolution images. You can also sample pixels in a selected area.

Color viewers


Color viewers provide a representation  of a range of colors by using either one- dimensional or three-dimensional shapes. The default color viewer is based on the HSB color model, but you can use this viewer to choose CMY or RGB colors.For information about color models, see “Understanding color models” in the Help.