How does one go about making the color palette photos you posted about a while ago? Do you have to hand make them in photoshop or...? Thanks!
Hey there! Bex here (the maker of the palette post).
There are a lot of ways to make palettes, even some Android and iPhone apps that will do it for you. I didn’t know this until after I started making my own. I make them in Photoshop by hand. Let’s make one together!
First, import the photo into PS. Unlock and duplicate the base layer (in case you make any mistakes and need the original image untouched - this is a best practice for ANY work you do in PS), then turn the base layer off (note - I am seeing now that I have written all of this out that I did not follow my own step one…Do as I say, not as I do…).
You’re going to want to create guides so all of your palette shapes are aligned properly. Go to View>New Guide. I make two guides - one 0.5 inches from the edge, and one 2 inches from the edge.
Create a new, blank layer on top of the base duplicate. Make sure this later is active and selected when you make your first sample.
In the toolbar, select the Elliptical Marquee tool (you can use any shape, but I use circles). In the guides you just made, make a circle 1.5x1.5. It will fit right inside. It should look like this:
Use the eyedropper tool to select any color from the photograph. I usually start at the lightest end of the color spectrum I’m working with. In this case I chose a whitish tone. Switch to the paintbrush tool and fill in the circle you just created. You should now have something like this:
Now, there are 100 ways to do this, but I’m a careful Photoshopper, and I often like to maximize my freedom with an image and take the long way around a lot of tasks. For my own methods, I create an individual layer for each color sample. This way, I can move them around and delete or replace at my leisure. I label each layer with the color sampled in the circle. You will see here that my first layer is called “white”. My second layer is called “orange” and I make the circle anywhere within the guides. PS is smart, and it will know you’re trying to line stuff up, so it will help you. Move your circles around all you want, and PS will snap them to the guides (if you have “snap” checked under View) when it thinks that’s what you want. In this case, it is.
I repeat this step for every circle I create. At the end, it looks something like this:
You’ll notice that I decided to reverse my palette, and I was very happy to have created all of those separate layers. You’ll also notice that I forgot that pink comes before orange in the spectrum, and had to insert another layer in.
The final step is merging the circle layers into one. To do this, you select all the sample layers, right click and select “merge layers”. Save in the format of your choice and voila! A beautiful palette fit for a queen.
Feel free to play around with this technique as much as you feel comfortable. Make your guides on the top or bottom! Use tones in black and whites! Make squares! Diamonds, even! Have fun and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
Photography by Bex