Illustrator Color Picker | The Super Color Picker In Illustrator: Recolor Artwork

Laura Coyle

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The Super Color Picker In Illustrator: Recolor Artwork


Did you know that there is a super fast, efficient and wonderful color picker inside of Illustrator? But it’s a secret it’s hidden in another feature. So here I am in Adobe Illustrator 2020 and I want to change the background color of this art. This is some lovely stock are at the London skyline, and I want to change the blue color in the background, so I have the blue rectangle selected as we can see here in the layer’s panel and all you have to do to get this fantastic color. Picker is just go right up here to this color wheel button. Click on it. It’s the Recolor artwork feature. Click on edit, get to the color wheel and then just start dragging this circle around, and then I can change the background color. It’s so wonderful to be able to quickly preview a bunch of different colors and see what might work for this particular artwork, and it’s really a lot faster than anything else inside of Illustrator. So once you kind of homed in on a color like this, then you can go down to the sliders below and just make a few quick adjustments. I’ll brighten this up. Maybe desaturate it a little bit and once. I’ve decided on the color. I want all I have to do is click. OK, and it’s done and that was pretty fast. It certainly is a lot faster than using the regular color picker in Illustrator. When you double, click on one of the fill swatches here in this case, you have to go to a whole other area and then start clicking around and guessing as to whether this color might compare better than this color here and then click. OK, you’re not sure and you have to undo. That’s not very efficient and, of course you can always go to the color panel and use the sliders here. I do this a lot, but there are just times when there’s nothing faster and more versatile than being able to use this color wheel inside of the Recolor artwork feature. So I love this, and we’re going to talk a little bit more about this. So what we’ve already learned is that you can use the. Edit side, color wheel here. There are sliders for fine-tuning below, and there’s also a menu here of all the other familiar lighters that you’re used to using an illustrator and then at the bottom here is a check box. This allows you to look at the original color and then compare it to your new color, and you have to have this checked in order to recolor the art and then just click. OK, and we’re done, so we’ve learned a little bit about Recolor artwork. Let’s go and take this a step further, so I’ll undo because I want to get back to that. Blue color work that we started with, so you can see sort of how this art was designed to have a lighter blue background and then these silhouettes of darker blue buildings in the background, let’s say. I want to recolor two colors. So the first thing I want to do is make sure. I’ve got this background selected. I can see here in the layer’s panel that it is, And then I’m going to grab the Magic Wand Tool. Hold on the shift key that allows me to add to my selection and then. I’m going to click on just one of these buildings here, and I get everything That is the same color now. One thing you want to know is that when you go and pick up the magic wand tool, there are also settings here. So if I double click on the tool, we can see the Magic Wand In this case, I have it set to look for the fill color and the tolerance I have set is zero. The default setting is 32 so when you want to get the exact color you’re clicking on. You can set this to zero, so it’s up to you to make these adjustments by double clicking, but this enabled me to just get these blue buildings in the background. So now I have that selection will go back into Recolor artwork, and now I can work on just recoloring these two colors in the art, so I’m going to go to the Edit side, and here’s something else that we can learn about this tool. What we can see right now, is we? Have these two circles here of the two different blue shades that I have, and if I just grab one and move it, I can recolor these independently, But I don’t really want to do that. I want to keep that relationship between the two colors so first of all, let’s go ahead and get back to where we started from the way to do that is by clicking on this eyedropper button here, and that just resets everything to the beginning now. Unfortunately, there’s no step wise, undo inside Recolor artwork like there is everywhere else in Illustrator, so resetting completely with the eyedropper button is about your only option and recolor artwork, so if I want to maintain the color relationship and the values between these two selected colors here, then I’m going to need to lock these together using this button now when I click on this off and on, you’re gonna see, it changed from dotted lines to solid lines. So when you see solid lines, these are linked together, and now you can move them as one, so I can just start dragging these around and you can see that everything sort of updates in a nice color harmony like this, So let’s say this time. I want to do something like dramatic like the night sky here, so I’ll leave it there and click OK to complete this change, so we’ve learned a few more things using the Magic Wand tool to select colors linking colors inside of recolor artwork to keep them in their color relationship and resetting or starting over with your color using the eyedropper button in recolor artwork. Now, let’s look at another thing that you can do in Illustrator. That can be helpful in a situation like this, and that is to save your selection, so I’ve already gone to the trouble of getting all of these buildings in the background selected and, of course, the background rectangle, So I can save that selection in case. I want to come back to it later so to do that. I’m just gonna go up to the Select menu and right down here to something called save selection. When I release on this, I can give it a name, so I’m gonna call it London background so that it’s easy to spot later and click OK now if I deselect everything in here and I get my little selection tool decide that I want to go back and grab that selection. Well here if I go back up to the Select menu and go all the way down to the bottom of this menu, you can see London background and now look everything selected. Then I can just go back to Recolor artwork. Click on edit. Don’t forget to lock these colors together and then find a new color combination for these and then finally to accept that change. Just click, OK, so I love to use recolor artwork just for coloring one or maybe two colors in my art. I think as a color picker, it works the way the illustrator color picker should work and maybe in the future it will work that way, but in the meantime. Hopefully this is a helpful tip for you, and if you want to learn more about recolor artwork. I have a great course totally about that subject on teachable, so look for the links at the end of the video. And please subscribe If you’re watching on Youtube and thank you for watching.