The latest update for Adobe InDesign CC 2014 gives you a great new tool for creating a beautiful matching color palette based on the images and artwork already in your layout. The Color Theme tool will create for you 5 different 5-swatch palettes or themes of color with a simple click based on the objects you have selected on your page, which you can then add to your swatches palette or export to Adobe Color (formerly Kuler – will get to that in a moment) for use in other applications and on other devices.
If you have a photograph placed on your page, select the new tool then click the photo. The Color Theme tool will select a range or palette of colors based on that image. It will also work on a vector object, shape or a selected area of your layout including several different objects. A main 5-swatch color theme shows up automatically. By clicking on the down arrow you will see four additional “themes”: Colorful, Bright, Dark and Muted. These will give you variations of the basic theme from which to choose.
A button to the right allows you to add any or all of the themes to your Swatches palette. Option clicking that button will allow you to add just an individual color. The colors are by default defined according to your “document intent.” If you hadn’t noticed, whenever you create a new InDesign document, there is a drop-down menu called Intent where you choose if your creation is heading for the Print world, for the Web or for Digital Publishing (e-Pubs). By double clicking the actual Color Theme tool in the toolbar, you can choose to leave your colors “defined as per document intent” or go ahead and decide for yourself to have the colors rendered as CMYK or RGB. In the prepress department here, we were hoping the tool would include the magic of matching the closest PMS color to the selected sample, but no such luck…..yet.
Now here’s another new feature. Adobe Kuler is now Adobe Color. You can access your Creative Cloud Color account directly in InDesign by going to Window – Color – Adobe Color Themes. In the panel that opens, you can access all your previously defined Kuler… er, Color themes, explore the themes of others just as you did with the mobile app or online, or create new ones from scratch. Any themes you create in PhotoShop or Illustrator are also here to share. Adobe has integrated the favorite advancements of its former Kuler app directly into the Creative Cloud applications in a very seamless, easy to use way.
You can watch a couple of very brief overviews of these new features from Adobe by going to Help – What’s New… These new features are very intuitive and a great tool for your color inspiration. The integration of Adobe Color directly into the Creative Cloud apps is very handy and will be welcomed by the Kuler/Color community, though I’m already finding it difficult to stop calling it Kuler.