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  • Leah Henderson

Coloring Through the Week

Each week as we dive into the readings and lectures, strong themes as design principles or how we process technology come forward. While reviewing Don Norman, we explored how we blame ourselves when technology fails us, but this is not, in fact, correct. The technology has failed us and thinking with this mindset will allow us to evaluate the holes that need to be fixed in what we develop.


As resonating as his words were, it was Jeff Johnson’s that spoke to me this week. He had an entire chapter focusing around color, the perception of it, utilizing contrast, and how to think of color while designing effectively. I’m not sure if reading kept these topics top of mind or it was a week full of color, but everywhere I went, I was dealing with color principles. Whether it was students needing advice on how to use it, discussing accessibility, or helping a coworker review freelance work, color was the main driver behind all of these discussions.


To me, color is such an essential part of what we do, but is it necessary? From the most basic sense, no not always. Building a successful wireframe prototype proves that you can create an entire software sequence or website is merely black and white. But during the design implementation of these projects, if the designer fails to utilize color appropriately, the entire, once successful, prototype can now fail. This focus on color engaged me with a few tools I shared below as they help me gain inspiration while balancing accessibility standards.






Color Checker Tools:


Hex Naw

A simple, stripped-down color checker tool which is easy to use and digest.


Web AIM

More of a technical breakdown, but provides more in-depth results as well as a quick ability to adjust color.



Color Schemers:


Adobe Color

A bit more technical but provides solid presets of different types of color pallets from monochromatic, triad, etc.


Coolors.co

My personal favorite as it allows a unique take on exploring and building pallets.


Adobe Capture

An inspiring app that connects the outside world and breaks it into shapes, color, and textures.

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