Color stuck? Try the color palette finding technique graphic designers love

On the hunt for the perfect color palette? While there are plenty of color palette generating tools available on the web, there’s nothing quite like curating your very own, unique combination of colors. One way to do this is through color exploration—a creative approach to generating beautiful color palettes that work for a particular project.

What is a color exploration

A color exploration (sometimes called a color study), is an abstract, visual representation of a set of colors, designed for you to see how each color interacts with one another. It’s a technique many graphic designers like to use for exploring how different color sets work together in various applications.

  1. Grovo Color Study 2: French Fry yellow red french fry grovo
  2. Shape & Color Study abstact pink shape color
  3. Color Study - 03 color study palette color

How to get started

The good news is, creating a color exploration is fairly simple because there are no hard and fast rules. They can be as simple or as complex as you decide. As you can see in the examples above, every color exploration will look a little different—you can use as many colors as you like, and you can play around with various shapes, textures, and typography to add even more depth.

If you’re not sure where to start when it comes to exploring color, we’ve got you covered. One of our very own Dribbblers Justin Mezzell created a downloadable color exploration template for Adobe Illustrator so you can simply start dropping in your own color schemes! Check it out:

Color Composition Testing Temp[late download template color

Color Composition Testing Temp[late

by Justin Mezzell

Hey! If you're looking to pressure test some colors and the relationship they have with one another, I threw together a little AI file that you can download and see how they're all working together. Hope it's helpful! You can download the attachment to...

View on Dribbble

Color exploration inspiration

If you’re eager to try your very own color study, here are a handful of beautiful explorations created by graphic designers to inspire you. Use them as inspiration for your next graphic design project, or for your next color study foundation:

  1. Pattern exploration vintage mid century geometric paint illustration color shape art abstract pattern
  2. Color Study palette simple fashion modern bold theory color
  3. Screen Shapes
  4. Pattern 03 bright vector branding pattern art illustration
  5. shape and color exploration taco sun fun modern type geometric line old school retro shapes
  6. Color and Pattern exploration flower nature illustration design branding logo minimal mark brand
  7. Abstract Exploration 02 composition form shape color abstract explore
  8. Exploration pattern color illustration digital
  9. Testing patterns minimal ship sea color colour palette geometry pattern circle color scheme branding
  10. Color Study collage study color art composition design graphic
  11. Mixpanel Events tech event design illustration branding
  12. Morning Doodles shapes color design brown illustration white pink black shape texture
  13. Shape & Color diamond square circle triangle pattern geometric color
  14. Type And Color Exploration flat simple type layout clean minimal typography web website
  15. 7222019 color white vector red design bold shapes illustration orange yellow green blue shape texture

Row 1: Steve Wolf, C.Rowe, Skinny Ships. Row 2: Rogie for Dribbble, Sophia Umansky, Calin Ciobanu. Row 3: Jay Higginbotham, Michelle Lasalvia, Lorena G. Row 4: Cody Paulson, Mike Casebolt for Mixpanel, Cory Uehara. Row 5: Noah Jacobus, Mario Šestak, Cory Uehara.

Find more Inspiration stories on our blog Courtside. Have a suggestion? Contact