Pantone color swatches

Use a Color Picker to Select an Exact Color from an Image

When working with visuals, you often need to make text, a shape, or another graphic perfectly match a particular color.

If, for example, you’re creating imagery for a marketing campaign, an important presentation, or user documentation, you’ll probably need to follow brand guidelines that include a particular set of colors.

Of course, you can memorize the color values for all of your brand’s colors and enter them every time you need to pick a color, but that can be a bit difficult. Instead, you’re better off using a color picker.

How to Use a Color Picker to Perfectly Match Colors

A color picker is a feature of virtually all software or online image and text editing tools. It allows you to choose the colors of visual elements like text or shapes in a document or graphic.

Nowadays, the color pickers in most image and video editing software include a feature that will identify a color in an image based on its RGB or hexadecimal (HEX) values.

When you are using a color picker, you can click a space that contains a color in question and the color picker will display it. After identifying the color, you can apply it to shapes, text, or other elements on the canvas.

This allows you to perfectly match brand guidelines or maintain a consistent theme.

The color matching feature in most color pickers is indicated by an eyedropper icon. In the three steps that follow, I demonstrate how to use the color picker in Snagit to match an exact color found in an image.

You can use the same process with Camtasia to match the color of callouts, text, and other shapes to specific colors in a video.

Step 1: Open the image with the color you need to match

For this example, I want the red circles in the image to match the blue text.

Step 2: Select the shape, text, callout, or another element to be colored

Now, I’ll select the step markers. I can select all 3 simultaneously by holding shift and clicking on each.

Elements on a image selected.

Step 3: Select the eyedropper tool and click the desired color

To match the selected items to a particular color in the image, I’ll open the color picker and click the eyedropper icon.

The cursor changes to an eyedropper. As I drag it across the image, the eyedropper displays the color it is currently hovering above, along with the associated hexadecimal (HEX) color value.

Once the desired color is displayed, I click, and the selected objects change to that color.

 

 

That’s it! With those three quick steps you can identify and match any color in any image any time. If you want to learn some more about color models (like the RGB color model mentioned earlier), check out this article on RGB and CMYK color models.

 

Posted in Tips & How To's
Author
Guy Larcom

Guy Larcom is an Instructional Designer with the Marketing Team at TechSmith. Outside of making awesome screencasts and tutorials, he loves golfing and skiing.