4 Color Scheme Tools for Capturing that Perfect Hue

Whether you’re a professional designer or trying to find the right look for your home office, choosing the perfect color scheme takes more than a discerning eye. It takes patience. You have to be willing to wait for inspiration to strike. But when it finally does, you better have the right tools at your disposal for accurately capturing it. Luckily, an array of devices and applications are here to help. Want to capture the hue of a fallen leaf in a redwood forest? Check. How about the very specific shade of red in the logo of your favorite website? No problem. Here are four color capturing tools you should add to your design arsenal right now.

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Graphic designer with infographic elements on a light background

Pantone Capsure

The Capsure is a handheld device you can hold up to any surface to accurately record its color profile. It works on just about anything: a painted wall, an advertisement, even clothing. The sensor is surrounded by a light-blocking ring to produce accurate readings every time. Capsure comes pre-installed with a database of 10,000 colors, but you can download specific color packages to suit your needs. It’s a highly portable, durable device that stores up to 100 color captures. And once your work in the field is done, sync the device to Pantone’s Color Manager Software to view and share your colors. Pantone provides all of the data necessary for reproducing the color in a variety of image editing software. It’s a necessity for interior designers and contractors with an exacting clientele.

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Looking for design inspiration in a hurry? Look no further than TinEye, an image-based search tool that has that extra level of technical sophistication that designers need. TinEye incorporates special recognition technology into its search algorithm, so you can quickly search for specific attributes, including color hues. TinEye is especially useful for web developers who are working within a pre-existing color template and need specific images to incorporate into it. TinEye even provides usage data on every image, so you can easily determine how many times it has been viewed, downloaded and shared. Don’t have time to find that perfect shade of forest green? TinEye brings the forest to you.

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Adobe Color Capture CC

Some musicians have perfect pitch, and some artists have a perfect eye for color. For the rest of us there’s Color Capture CC, which lets you conveniently capture color combinations from your Android or iOS phone. Capture takes the guesswork out of finding appealing color schemes. Tap on a specific color in a saved image, and Capture suggests compatible hues using its preset color mode. Once you find something you like, save it to Adobe’s Creative Cloud, so you can use it in Photoshop later. Capture is an intuitive application, and its ability to capture accurate colors is limited only by your smartphone’s image capturing capabilities. The iPhone 6s True Tone flash, which adjusts before you shoot to account for ambient light, is an especially good match for Capture’s discerning eye.

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Designspiration is a social media application geared specifically towards artists and designers. It’s like Facebook for all of the stuff that inspires you, but it’s also so much more. Use the the app to capture, tag and store architectural images, typesets and color swatches. It’s like building a database for your creative self. What’s Designspiration’s coolest function? It automatically analyzes and organizes the colors in your tagged images. Just limit your search to blue, and this free app shows you all of the blue-centric images in your network.