Color Theme Lab

The lab consists of a provided PDF handout to which a PSD template is attached. The students are instructed to identify three field of study examples that they find inspirational to their work. The students are shown how to find large “free to use and modify” examples via Google’s search engine. The student places the example in the space provided in the PSD template. The next step for the student is to up the image to and to use its color generator to create a color theme. Kuler is an awesome resource that I use outside of teaching in my professional role as an illustrator and graphic designer but when uploading an image its auto feature often jumps to irrelevant areas of the picture which works out from an instructional point view because it forces the student to think about what color is important and what is not then manually adjust the theme. After creating the color theme the student downloads the .ase and loads it into PS’s swatches. Then using the magic wand tool, swatches and the fill command the student fills the provide boxes in the PSD template with the color theme they just created on-line. The last step has the student using the text tool to write a short analysis on how their inspirational example is using color as a tool to reinforce the message. In total the students complete three themes so that the repetition builds memory muscle and they become conformable using the functions needed to accomplish the lab. Attached to the zipped file is the PDF handout with the attached PSD, a short video of the steps involved and some student examples of the lab. Because this lab is designed to relevant to any major I get to see a variety of solutions. Film students often use screen still of their favorite movie, fashion students use work from their favorite designer, game designers often use their favorite characters, animation students often use stills, graphic design student examples run the gamut, etc., etc. etc. As always feedback is appreciated. Materials: For this lab you will need a workstation with internet access, Adobe ID, Acrobat and Photoshop.

Jody Campbell
Last Updated April 27, 2021


Graphic Design Design View more

Student Time

1-2 hours estimated class time

Education Level

Higher Education
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