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color scheme

How to Develop a Color Scheme

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Table of Contents

Color has amazing power and impact on how we feel. Confident, energized, powerful, happy, sad, relaxed, passionate, loved, etc. Subconsciously, color can cause emotions from within and determine how we respond to things we see online. Choosing colors for your brand is often a very personal choice, and yet a strategic one.

Because it’s such a personal and important choice to make, the thing I recommend entrepreneurs do is pick their favorite picture that best represents their brand, and then use Adobe Color CC to autoselect some colors that come out of it.

Keep in mind the following color guidelines and what each color means:

  • Purple – visionary, ambitious, purposeful, authentic, spiritual, mystical, majestic, truthful, luxurious
  • Blue – intelligent, logical, calm, efficient, cool, serene, clear, peaceful, loyal, trusty, reliable, secure
  • Turquoise – inspirational, innovative, creative, efficient, healing, demanding, calming, sophisticated, spiritual
  • Green – balanced, harmonious, fresh, healing, organic, earthy, abundant, restful, restorative, fertility
  • Yellow – self-confident, optimistic, happy, friendly, needy, bright, energetic, warm, creative, promising, sunny
  • Orange – abundant, positive, confident, successful, playful, sociable, creative, passionate, energetic
  • Red – strong, assertive, warm, determined, motivated, loving, powerful, dramatic, dynamic, passionate, courageous
  • Pink – feminine, compassionate, nurturing, tranquil, kind, romantic, intimate, naive, sweet, soft, playful, intuitive, hopeful
  • Brown – stable, grounded, reliable, friendly, conservative, honest, aspirational, balanced, organized, confident, earthy, modest
  • Black – classy, dramatic, safe, powerful, glamorous, serious, sophisticated, luxurious, dynamic, mysterious, in control
  • Grey – glamorous, solid, tech, intelligent, secure, sleek, modern, substance, sophisticated
  • White – pure, clear, fresh, easy, innocent, good, simple, uncompromising, hygienic, illuminating, ethereal, sophisticated

So as you can see from above, the colors that you choose for your brand do in fact have a represented emotion or perception associated with them. If you love a certain picture for your brand that you tend to migrate to every single day, then by all means use it and draw some color out of it for your brand. But be selective with your color choices. Go with your gut and your heart on this kind of decision.

Below you’ll see a sample picture that I uploaded to get some colors out of it.

Adobe Color CC

I have a thing for blueberries. Well, berries of any kind, really. This picture I set to “dark” on the Adobe Color CC software. You can choose from colorful, dark, bright, muted and custom on the color mood tool they offer.

For my brand, I went with a calming blue combined with a luxurious and classy black and grey tone. I accent with a lot of white space because I know visually that’s what many people tend to prefer. So I work with a lot of color punch every once in a while, making my images a stark contrast from the white background.

Which colors should you choose? Good question. I would go with using the five colors offered, and adding either a gold, bronze, silver or rose gold metallic color for accent. Choose two dark colors, two light colors, and a medium tone for your brand. Once you have those colors, make sure you jot down the color hex so you know which ones you selected and stick to those colors for all of your branding.

This will not take you more than 15 minutes to decide. The key is to find the right picture that resonates with you and your brand so you can pick up on colors from it. But knowing that if you’re reading this blog, you’re probably already pretty savvy with your images by know and already have one in mind.

Go forth and conquer!


Also published on Medium.

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