Good Color Practice - Part 3 of Chapter 2 from Web Graphics for Non-Designers (5/7)
Web Graphics for Non-Designers, Chapter 2: Using Color
Consistency is key to good color practice on the Web, reinforcing brand recognition and familiarity. Steady usage of color makes users feel at home, and eases the ability of a visitor to recognize when they have shifted outside the realm of your site. Other sites may have different standards with regard to security, member privacy, sales policies, and quality of product. It is important that you make it as easy as possible for users to recognize their movement outside your zone of control.
With an increase in the strength of a brand and its color association, the importance of color consistency also increases.
You will be familiar with the following examples of strong color association and uniformity:
There are some methods that you can employ which will simplify the process of standardizing your colors.
While designing your site templates, specifying key colors and using these as a source for others is as simple as clicking the new swatch icon on your color palette in Photoshop when you have the desired color as your foreground selection.
Photoshop also has the ability to save custom palettes, allowing you to maintain a single source file, and thus consistency. These preferences can be found within the layer options. Other graphics packages have similar features.
Shades and Tints
While still in your preferred layout application, selecting shades and tints from your core hues keeps you from moving even slightly out of the range of your scheme.
In the screenshot to the left, you will note that while selecting a color from those available, the hue value (H) does not change. You can still change the saturation of the color by altering the percentage of S, or the brightness (B).
Created: December 16, 2002
Revised: December 16, 2002