June 04, 2013
Demo: Theories and Harmonies of Color
Given all the interest in the new Adobe Kuler, you might enjoy this talk from Stéphane Baril, an Adobe systems engineer and a graphic novel colorist. In this talk he covers:
- How to understand and effectively use a color wheel in your design process
- How to use Live Color and Recolor Artwork in Illustrator, both for color exploration and graphic production
- Tips and techniques for using color in Adobe Photoshop and InDesign
Update/related: See CreativePro’s 10 Essential Tips for Kuler.
May 30, 2013
Adobe Kuler arrives for iPhone
Check it out:
The new Kuler iPhone app allows you to capture inspiring color themes anytime, using the iPhone camera. You can then sync those color themes to the Kuler website, which allows you to create and edit color themes and browse thousands of themes created by other users. All the themes you create with Kuler will be accessible in Adobe Illustrator CC and Ideas.
The Kuler Web app has also been redone in HTML5.
If you have any feedback or questions, we want to hear from you. Please join the conversation on the Kuler forum.
Update: Here’s a quick demo:
January 31, 2010
Kuler Killers? New color-picking/sharing panels for Photoshop
The plug-in costs $39. For $49/year, you can also link your plugin to your online account, sync palettes between multiple computers, and share palettes with colleagues, collaborators, or clients.
In a related vein, developer Anastasiy Safari has created MagicPicker, a $7 non-modal color picker/color wheel that builds on his free ColorPicker panel (see my earlier post for details). Here’s a screenshot:
January 09, 2009
Kuler adds Community Pulse
The team behind Kuler, Adobe’s color harmony creation & sharing site, has introduced a neat new feature:
Explore the Kuler global community with Community Pulse, a big picture view of color usage. This is a beta feature, using data visualization (screenshot) to show the relative popularity of colors across a sampling of countries, time periods, and tags.
To check it out,
- Sign in with your Adobe ID to play around with it
- Mouse over the histogram to see the hues on the color wheel
- Try the granularity slider to see more/less color detail
- Use the comparison icon (two circles) to compare/contrast
If you have questions, check out Kuler Help. And don’t forget to check out the Kuler panel in Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, and InDesign CS4 (see Window->Extensions->Kuler). Here’s a couple of screenshots, plus a video demo. [Via]
June 27, 2008
New AIR-based kuler desktop talks to the Suite
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned SwitchBoard, a Flex library that lets Adobe AIR desktop apps communicate with Creative Suite applications. Now there’s a new version of the AIR-based kuler desktop app that can send color swatches to Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. Here’s an annotated screenshot. To take it for a spin, first download SwitchBoard, then install kuler desktop (linked from the right-hand nav area of kuler.adobe.com). [Update: Here's the direct link.]
June 05, 2008
kuler does Flickr
Adobe kuler (the rich Internet application for color exploration and sharing, in case you’ve been chilling under a rock) now features some cool integration with Flickr, creating color harmonies from images. To try it, click the "Create" button at left, then choose "From an Image." Next to the button that lets you upload your own shots, you’ll see a Flickr button that lets you browse and search images that you & others have shared. (Here’s a screenshot.) Foxy.
Other new tweaks debut today on kuler as well:
- Time-based theme browsing (last 7 days, last 30 days, all days), to surface more user-generated content
- Theme details now includes a More Info view, where you can choose your avatar and find the theme’s direct link (for blog links, or to email or IM, etc.)
March 18, 2008
Adobe kuler RIA adds new capabilities
A new version of kuler, Adobe’s popular rich Internet application for color exploration and sharing, has just launched. New features:
- Use color extraction to quickly and automatically generate a color theme from any uploaded photo or other image. Explore different moods, such as bright or muted, to see different colors, or drag the markers to select colors. [Hit "Create" over in the left-hand navigation, then select "From an Image" at upper-left.]
- Endless favorites: Now save as many themes as you like, and browse them in your Mykuler area
- Browse by Random (randomly selected) themes, in addition to Highest Rated, Newest, and Most Popular
Enjoy! [Via Sami Iwata]
February 28, 2008
New AIR-powered Adobe kuler desktop
The crew behind Adobe’s kuler color harmony RIA has released a new version of the desktop color feed browser (screenshot). You can check it out by installing Adobe AIR, then downloading the app. New features include:
- Browse color themes from the kuler website while offline (up to 100 themes cached per feed)
- Drag and drop themes onto your own desktop as transparent "tear offs," which can be scaled and viewed over any application
- Access themes from Mykuler (must be signed in)
- Download themes as ASE (Adobe Swatch Exchange) files directly from the kuler desktop (must be signed in)
- Browse the new RSS feed "Random"
Here’s the full feature list (PDF) in case you want all the details. [Via Sami Iwata]
Completely tangential but involving colors: Art Lebedev’s Optimus Tactus keyboard concept. [Via Scott Valentine]
January 22, 2008
Mondrianum brings kuler to Photoshop
Joining a long list of apps integrated with Adobe’s kuler color harmony site, Photoshop & other Mac apps now get in on the game thanks to Lithoglyph’s
CocoaKuler Mondrianum*. The tool gives the Apple color picker the ability to browse kuler’s color harmony feeds, displaying the results in a slick Cover Flow view; here’s a screenshot. To access the picker from within Photoshop, go into preferences and select the Apple (rather than Adobe) color picker. Mucho groovio! [Via Lydia Varmazis]
The name is a bit of a misnomer [name now updated], as Photoshop is Carbon-based (as are Final Cut Pro, iTunes, Office, etc.).
January 12, 2008
kuler RIA comes to Dreamweaver
On the heels of integrations with Fireworks, Flash, Illustrator, Dashboard, and even Visio, Adobe’s kuler hosted app/color community is now integrated with Dreamweaver, courtesy of the good folks at WebAssist. The panel is a free download from their site.
Speaking (completely tangentially) of Color-Related Technologies with Funky K-Based Names™, the color bars of Pioneer’s Project Kuro remind me of kuler.
September 20, 2007
Feedback, please: kuler in Photoshop?
Every time I’ve demonstrated Illustrator CS3′s excellent Live Color feature, the first question I hear is predictable: "Great, but when can I have that in Photoshop? [Or in Flash, or InDesign, or...]" Selecting harmonious colors is a necessary part of just about every design discipline.
Adobe’s kuler online application offers a subset of Live Color in a Web-hosted, Flash-powered environment. It offers powerful tools for creating color harmonies, plus tools for saving color sets & sharing those with others. As noted recently, feeds of these colors can be sucked into other apps.
I’ve made no secret of the fact that I want to make it possible to extend Photoshop (and all Adobe apps, for that matter) by dropping in Flash-based palettes/panels. So, here’s a thought: what if we gave Photoshop (and maybe other Suite apps) the ability to use kuler to create and modify color harmonies, and to upload/download color sets to share with others?
Here’s a really simple mockup I created to show how it might work. You’d be able to use the color wheel to create color sets based on rules (Analogous, Complementary, etc.). Clicking on the resulting colors would let you paint with them in Photoshop, and/or save them as color swatches. You’d also be able to view, search, and use harmonies created by others & shared via kuler.
What do you think? I created a two-question survey to gauge your response. Comments are also welcome. [Update: The survey is open again. I didn't realize that Survey Monkey had a 100-response limit on their free account. Clever, clever...]
September 18, 2007
kuler + screensaver mashup
And the hits keep on coming… File this one under "Eine kleine Bildschirmschoner": a German-speaking developer has created a simple but attractive Mac screensaver (same page auto-translated) that sucks in a feed of popular harmonies on Adobe kuler. Gut! [Via]
Elsewhere in the world of cool screensavers, groundbreaking Flash coder Yugo Nakamura has created Kaze to Desktop, a Windows "screensaver which moves according to the current wind (=kaze) conditions of your city." Check out the video to see some super-smooth action. (The scattered piles of Windows chrome remind me of the "crash board" Mordy Golding spotted on a client visit.)
September 12, 2007
Adobe kuler mashed-up with Visio, more
As you may know, kuler is Adobe’s rich Internet app (RIA) for creating & sharing color harmonies. About a month ago the kuler team unveiled an API that enables other applications to suck in feeds of the most popular, most recent, and highest rated harmonies found on the site.
Now Microsoft engineer Saveen Reddy has used the API to enable drawing kuler colors in Visio. Not having a copy of Visio, I can’t give this a spin, but the integration should make it easy to apply popular color themes to your artwork. Very cool. [Previously: It's also possible to pull kuler feeds onto your desktop or into Dashboard, and to use them inside the Flash authoring environment. Update: A free script lets you use .ASE swatch files in After Effects, making it possible to pull in kuler harmonies.]
In other kuler news, PM Sami Iwata reports that they’re running a “theme drive” to collect autumn-inspired themes. She writes,
kuler members can submit themes around the autumn season and also “vote” for
themes by rating and downloading them. At the end of the drive, the
kuler team will select a few of the highest rated and most popular
autumn themes to appear on a kuler t-shirt. If your theme is selected,
you will get 6 kuler t-shirts with your theme on it.
Hustle up, though: the theme drive runs from now until this Friday at 5:00 PDT. More details are here.
June 09, 2007
Flash gets kuler: RIA in a panel
Ah, I love how all this is shaping up: After debuting on the web, and followed by appearances in Dashboard and Apollo, Adobe’s kuler rich internet app is now available as a panel inside Flash CS3. Thanks to the efforts of the crew at Pixelfumes, you can now view & search feeds of color harmonies generated using the online tool, then use them inside Flash. I made a quick little demo video to show the panel in action. Great work, guys!
This is a great example of how opening a door to online community can enrich the desktop experience. If you know of other cool, usefully connected desktop apps (via Flash panels or any other method), please share ‘em. It’s very handy to have these on hand as we plan the future.
May 17, 2007
Apollo gets kuler: Color RIA lands on desktop
I’m pleased to report that kuler, Adobe’s Web-hosted application for exploring, creating and sharing color harmonies, can now be accessed from your desktop via Adobe’s Apollo technology. After a sneak peek at the CS3 launch event, the "kuler desktop" is now available for download on Adobe Labs, along with the required Apollo Runtime environment.
The kuler desktop offers the same RSS feed functionality as the kuler Dashboard widget but with a new form factor (see quick clip of it in action). Users can view RSS feeds of the highest rated, most popular, and newest themes from the kuler site, search the thousands of titled and tagged themes, search by kuler user name, and copy theme hex values to the clipboard.
For other cool Apollo bits, check out the technology showcase on Labs.
Note: By default, kuler installed itself on my Mac using my user Applications directory, rather than in the root Applications directory that I normally use. This isn’t a big deal, and you can easily change the install location, but I mention it in case you find yourself wondering where the app has been installed.
March 27, 2007
Adobe-Macromedia: Integration cornucopia!
I came to Adobe largely because integration between Flash and Photoshop just sucked–a situation that burned me every day as a designer. Back in 1999, when I learned that Adobe was planning a Web animation tool, I wrote to my contacts there and at Macromedia to suggest a "Flash Interchange Format" that would let everyone play nicely together. I just wanted the tools to get the garbage tasks out of my way so that I could do my job. Despite many assorted efforts, however, the stars just never aligned.
Fast forward to the present: we’re now starting to realize some of these long-sought benefits. In just over a year of Adobe and Macromedia being a single company, here’s new integration we’ve been able to deliver (continued below/in the extended entry):
March 25, 2007
Kuler RIA -> Desktop via Dashboard
The folks behind kuler, Adobe’s color-centric rich internet app, are a quietly busy bunch. Tonight they’ve posted a widget for OS X’s Dashboard (download — 200kb; screenshot). According to kuler community PM Sami Iwata,
the widget "displays RSS feeds of color themes from kuler… Browse the newest, highest rated, and most popular color themes; search for themes on the kuler site by tag, title, or creator ID; copy hex values from any theme to your clipboard."
Knowing this group, they’ll keep cranking out good stuff. In the meantime, if you have feedback on the widget, please let the team know via the kuler user forum.
November 26, 2006
The Colour & the Shape
- Colour By Numbers is a 72m-high light installation in Sweden. You can program the colors using a phone (just call +46 (70) 57 57 807), then watch the results in a live video feed on the site. [Via]
- Photographer Constantine Manos captures the nation’s rich palettes in American Color.
- COLOURlovers is "a resource that monitors and influences color trends," providing news and interviews as well as tools for browsing and rating palettes. They recently interviewed Dr. Woohoo (aka Drew Trujillo), creator of the In The Mod color analytics tool, among other grooviness.
- Moto Colors makes it possible to browse Motorola phones by color, and to create, ah, abstract designs in the corresponding colors. (Click and drag once you’ve picked a color in order to paint.) [Via]
- It’s possible to trick your eye into seeing color on a B&W photo, as in this Spanish castle illusion. To create your own version of the illusion, follow the steps of this tutorial, complete with a Photoshop action. [Via]
November 16, 2006
Introducing Kuler, Adobe’s color harmony RIA
Today Adobe takes the wraps off kuler, a new hosted application for creating and sharing color harmonies. The best way to experience kuler is to jump right in, but if you want a quick peek, here’s a screenshot.
Written in ActionScript 3, kuler (to quote the FAQ)
"allows users to quickly create harmonious color themes based on predefined color
formulas, or by mixing their own color themes using an interactive color wheel. Color themes can be
created in multiple colorspaces including RGB, CMYK and LAB. Themes can be tagged, shared and
commented on. Users can search the kuler online community for top rated colors, or search for schemes
by tag word or date created. Users of Adobe Creative Suite 2 applications can download any color theme
as an Adobe Swatch Exchange (.ASE) file that can be imported in their preferred creative application and
can be applied on their artwork."
You can also get readouts of the color values & copy them to the clipboard.
I think that you may, as Ryan Stewart writes, find kuler "strangely engaging." In any case, I think we’ll look back and see this launch as a milestone, a key moment when Adobe creative tools moved from their desktop-only heritage to a future in which they make connectedness & collaboration first-class parts of the experience. Good, good stuff. So, jump in, start creating, and let us know what you think!