What is Adobe Color? | Fundamentals of Design

Color is one of the main elements of design which we have begun to cover in depth here. An often forgotten site that is a helpful tool for many designers is known as Adobe Color. So what does Adobe Color do? Well, Adobe Color offers both a color converter and color scheme creator that syncs with the Adobe Creative Cloud.

Creating a Color Scheme

One of the most important features of Adobe Color is the ability to create a color scheme in a few clicks.

Color Wheel

The color wheel is the most common method for creating a color scheme within the site. Simply start with a color in the wheel and Adobe will automatically calculate the perfect harmonies. Manipulating the middle color further increases the customization as that is the basis of the color scheme.

Extract Theme & Extract Gradient

Adobe Color also lets users upload an image that it will analyze and create a theme or gradient based on the colors used.

Accessibility Tools

Accessibility Tools feature two very helpful tools for designers. 

Color Blind Safe

First is the Color Blind Safe checks. These checks take the color scheme you’re working on and simulate what the colors look like to color blind individuals, warning you if colors are too close together.

Contrast Checker

Next is the Contrast Checker tool, which checks for sufficient contrast between colors using WCAG criteria. Along with running a contrast check, Adobe Color also creates suggestions on colors that would increase contrast.


The Explore tab sources images and their respective color themes and places them all in an indexed tool. Users can search for certain keywords and their respective color schemes. For example, typing in the word “water” will bring up color schemes and images featuring a lot of blues and aquas.


Sourcing images through Behance and Adobe Stock, Adobe Color can create a representative trend list based on popularity. Trends are even broken down based off of industry/genre and can also be searched by keyword.


Libraries let users browse and access their stored images and colors on the Adobe Library platform. This can be handy when needing to pull images or colors for a color scheme as users don’t have to ever leave the site but rather navigate to a separate tab. Libraries also sync across applications so saving a color scheme will be imported into all Adobe products. This does require an Adobe subscription however to utilize effectively.


Adobe Color is a worthwhile tool for any designer and best of all doesn’t require an Adobe subscription. Whether you’re just finding inspiration or staying up to date on trends, or even checking accessibility options, knowing of this tool and using it can benefit many. While the mathematically perfect colors may not be the exact solution, they can help guide you on your design journey.

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