Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Photoshop and Color Choices

I belong to a study group which was started as a result of the Online Guild's Computer Design Workshop last January. One of the participants posted a link to Ruth Stewart's blog, Knitting on Impulse. One of the categories, Playing with Colour, explores how she uses digital imaging to inspire color choices. It seems like I'm not the only one ready to give it a try. Cara has been using this method for her mitered squares.

To try it out I took two rather nondescript images I found on my computer. While there aren't many bright colors in this photo I like it because it seemed lush, warm, and peaceful. It also reminds me that in 38 days I will be done for the summer!

I used the mosaic filter (pixelate submenu, size 45 cell) so that I could concentrate on colors and not be distracted by objects.

Then I cropped a small section so that I could isolate adjacent colors.


Richard Rosenman has freeware plug-ins for Photoshop. I used his Grid Generator and then using the eyedropper tool picked up colors that appealed to me and using the paint bucket poured the color into one grid.


Here's another example using a brighter, more colorful image.

And using the same mosaic settings.

So, you say you don't have any imagination? You don't know where to start when you want to dye roving or plan a new project? Try this method. Sure, I still like to pick up bottles of dye and go crazy, but you can't have too many tricks up your sleeve when your inspiration just isn't there.

Don't have Photoshop? The plugins work on many freeware programs like Irfanview, which I recommend to anyone looking for a good, basic image program. You can't beat the price either!


  1. This is a great way to go to create a palette for any project. I am doing this to figure out pain colours for our renovation.

  2. paint colours... ::sigh::

  3. How do you take these grids and apply them to your weaving and knitting? I love the colors you extracted from the butterfly. Do you have any plans for these or are you just playing until you find something that jumps out at you?

  4. Thanks for the grid generator link!

  5. How fun! My problem is that I could spend hours and hours playing with the computer and not so many actually dyeing!

  6. Now I am inspired to give this a go!!

  7. Wow! That's neat! I tried it on some of my photos and now I want to go dye!

  8. Charleen, Is this a group that I can join in? When I folowed the link, it didn't seem to be an online group. It sounds like a wonderful guild.