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Import and Export Colors

Lesson 14 from: A Complete Guide to Color in Adobe Illustrator

Jason Hoppe

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Lesson Info

14. Import and Export Colors

Best practices for creating a color palette, importing the colors used in the file into the Swatches Panel. Export colors as and Adobe Swatch Exchange file (.ASE) for use in other Illustrator files and other Adobe Applications.
Next Lesson: Outro from Jason

Lesson Info

Import and Export Colors

when I start up a new document and I want to I've got my creative ideas and I want to create a logo or an illustration or some type of infographic. One of the things I want to dio is I get my sketches, I sketch them out and then I want to go through and I want to pick my color palette. And how I picked my color palette is really pretty simple. I see the colors that I'd like to use when I draw container. When I go to my color picker or my color panel and I pick the colors that I'd like going in, I pick a Siris of colors that I think I'm going thio like and I'm going to use. And I can create a many colors, as I like. Now you notice I'm not going under the swatch panel in creating a new color. I'm just simply going in here using my color picker and picking colors that I think you're gonna look really good. Okay, I click. OK, and so here's my Siris of colors. Let me get a slightly different color other than this because I already have that color there so I'm gonna do kind of a ah blue Gonn...

a come in here, do that kind of a blue here. Maybe I want kind of a bluish purple. Okay, so here's the colors that I'd like to use. Now what I do is I get all my colors in boxes on my document, and I do this for a couple of reasons. One so I can always compare and contrast and see how these colors work. But I'm also going to do something a little different as well. I'm gonna take all these colored boxes to duplicate them, hold down my option or by all turkey going to duplicate them kind of off to the side. Here. What I'm gonna do is I'm going to go when I'm going to create kind of a darker shade on all of these. Then do a lighter tent. So I select that box double click on my color picker and the way I could go we in and create a darker version of that colors. Click on my brightness slider, my brightness radio button and slide my slider down to get a darker green. It's my original green. Here's a darker one and I do this with all my colors? Why? So I get a really quick and easy way of creating that same color, but getting a lighter version of that color and a darker version of that color. Essentially, it's like an artist mixing their palates of paint. Okay, they start up and they mix a few things together to see the lights and the darks from those original colors of paint. And this is what I'm doing here. I'm just laying out my artist's palette, and I'm getting some contrast and some highlights and some tints and shades to make this look really interesting. Okay, there. Now I'm going to do the same thing. Gonna copy those again. Use my option or all to click and drag and duplicate those as well. Send those to the back. I'm going to repeat this process. To what? I'm going to go when I'm going to make them substantially lighter. Okay. And so my double click on the color picker use my brightness, and I'm going thio Brighton those up right there. Okay. And do that right there. Great. That works. Going to go in and do this to get a lighter version Oh, look, I'm out of light. I can't make this one substantially lighter. What I'm gonna do in the switch over to my saturation here when I go down on here to basically de saturate this a little bit marks, it's pretty much at the level of brightness where I couldn't go any brighter using my brightness radio button. So if that does happen and when you have your brightness here and I can't go any brighter, just switch over to your saturation and then move these down, which will allow you to breaking those up. One last color here, and I'm going to write that up, right? So awesome. This is now my color palette here. So if I want to go in and you can see, like, doing my trees here, I could do a lighter version, a medium version and a dark version of each and every one of my items to get a nice contrast and they do this right off I start right off and I do this. Now here's what I'm gonna dio. I'm going to select these colors going to go to my swatch panel and this is a cool trick. I'm going Thio choose add selected colors and what this does is it puts this into my color panel. And look, it does it all as global colors because right now I'm in c. N y came out and I'm previewing these a c n y que So what I see is actually what's going to print. So this is great. And what's nice about this watch panel to is I always like to be nice and neat and orderly here, so you can then order these colors together just by dragging and dropping them together and putting these into the sets so that you can have all of the same colors together. And so you get those little families all together very nicely right there to get all those colors in. So there are grouped together in a way that makes a lot of sense and go through. I won't do all of these, but I'm going to go through. Here we go. So I get all these colors together. And now I've got my nice list of colors either as a list or Aiken do these as swatches here small, medium, large thumbnails. And I'm ready to go with my document. Those are all my colors right there, and I can use any of those. What's the other advantage? Well, if I decide that I want to use one of these colors here and I grab one of these colors and I decide. Okay, that's the color I'm going to use. Or that's the color I'm going to use if I ever want to go further. I can always go in to my color panel, and I can always tint that because guess what? These are global colors, and that's the cool part of doing this. Now let's jump over to this one here. Here's a file and somebody has gone in and created this whole thing. But there's no swatches in this watch panel or there may be swatches in the Swatch panel, but they don't line up with anything. I click on this color and it doesn't show up in the Swatch panel. What doe Ideo? Well, here's a great way of doing it. I'm gonna go under my Swatch panel drop down menu, and I'm just going to say, add used colors. Any colors that were used in this entire document will just simply be added to my color panel just like that. And they're all global colors now. What happens if I'd like to then take thes colors and use them in another illustrator file? Well, a couple different ways we can do this. Doesn't matter what illustrator file you have, you can go into your swatches panel and you can go and you can go and save thes as an either A s E file, which is an adobe swatch exchange file. Which means this library can then be used in any other adobe application where color is available for you to use. I can save this as an AI library, which means it's on Lee going to be used in other illustrator documents, So this could be kind of nice, but it could also be kind of limiting as well, because then you can't use it in any other document or any other program other than adobe her than illustrator. I should say I'm going to do adobe Swatch exchange, which means any adobe application that allows you to import color. You can import this in, so I click on the save color for Adobe Swatch Exchange and it's going to ask me where do I want to save this? Now? It tells you swatches contain ingredients, patterns or tents are not currently currently exchangeable. And this means that you can't use tints or patterns ingredients in a lot of other adobe applications because they just don't support it. So that's one of the drawbacks of doing an adobe swatch exchange. If you had exported, this is just a AI Swatch library. Those would be able to be included. Okay, so there we have our swatches. Well, how does this work? Well, let's go over to our pets that we were working on here, and I'd like to bring those goldfish colors into the realm of my pets. How do I do that? Well, I can click on the cheese grater and open a swatch library or click on my actual library icon, same thing. And instead of loading any of the default libraries, I'm gonna go down to the bottom of the list, and I'm gonna choose other library, and I see that there is my goldfish dot sc that is my color Swatch by Dobie Swatch Exchange. I click open and it's going to go and it's going to give me my colors in my little floating panel of colors here, like it does with all of my other libraries right here. And if I'd like to then include those in my swatch panel, I simply go, and I can select these colors by holding clicking on the first one holding shift, clicking on the last one. You see, it does all the colors in there and don't need the white in the black. But I'm just going to drag those up into my document here, and I now have those swatches for me to use here, which is pretty cool. I don't like that function, and it's quite nice to be able to use.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Working AI Files
Color Modes
Color Wheel.mp4

Ratings and Reviews

Paula Ayers

Well taught and super useful. Will be looking at his other classes.

Nelson Mueller

Student Work