Colour tables

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Imago
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Colour tables

Post by Imago » Sun May 16, 2010 11:45 am

Developing my chars I've coloured them in this way:
Image

What do you think?

P.S.
Searching for some chromatic source I found this website:
http://www.colorschemer.com/schemes/

I think it can be useful.
Sorry for my bad english... Q_Q
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lwaxana
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Post by lwaxana » Sun May 16, 2010 7:05 pm

Imago--That's a nice set of colors! My suggestion is to desaturate some of the colors.

You could start by choosing one (or two) color(s) to stand out and look bold for each of the characters. You can leave that color pretty bright (saturated). Then you could make all the other colors duller, more gray (reduce saturation). That way the saturated color will stand out nicely. And it won't have to compete with the other colors.

Right now on character 2, you have a lot of contrast between the skin and clothes colors. If you are working in a color-realistic style, objects lit with the same lighting usually won't be so different in their lightness and darkness (value).

Is this the same project that you made the military-style jacket for? Can't wait to see what you're working on...! :D
Paul Mesken
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Re: Colour tables

Post by Paul Mesken » Mon May 17, 2010 10:03 am

Hi, Imago. It's hard to evaluate those colors without knowing the colors of the backgrounds and other important colors the characters interact with.

For example : if they are in a green forest than it's generally a bad idea to have your characters dressed in green. Colors should be chosen in the context they are used in and they should still function to seperate a character from the background even if you're squinting your eyes at the frame and only see colored blobs.

There are some pretty saturated colors in there. This might be okay for what you're going to do with them but realize that saturated colors will really pop (contrasting very strongly) when put on top of their de-saturated contrast color.

For example : that bright orange you have chosen will jump off the screen when put on top of a light, desaturared sky blue. This might be an effect you want but it might also draw attention of the viewer when you don't want it.

Color is especially used as a technical means to create contrast and seperation in your forms that make up a frame (of course, they should also be pretty and fit the character but that is secondary).

The several ways in which colors will contrast is neatly described in Johannes Itten's book "The Elements of Color" (based on his book "The Art of Color"). It describes 7 ways in which colors can contrast. Not only the color by itself (the hue) but also how light or dark it is, how saturated, the color "temperature", etc.

Also note that if you chose strong colors (like that orange) for big areas then it will become harder to work with "accents" (a small area of high contrast)

For example : a ginger person doesn't really have a hard orange as hair color (it's more a warm ochre, sienna deal). Interest is created by having small areas in such hair where the light strikes it and it becomes a rich yellow or orange. Such things really make a painting come alive, like highlights in the eye. But if you chose a strong orange as basic hair color to begin with then you have lost the possibility to make such accents because you cannot make contrasts anymore based on color saturation.

But whether this is a bad thing or not really depends on what you're going to do with the characters (South Park characters don't use such accents).

In short : you should really test your colors on the characters themselves in situations they will find themselves in in your movie. And look at those color tests with your eyes squinting so that you no longer see fine details. If the drawing is good then it still will read correctly even when you only see it as colored blurred blobs.
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Imago
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Post by Imago » Mon May 17, 2010 2:18 pm

@ lwaxana:
Yes, it's the same project, I'm at the final act.
Good tips, thanks, now I will do some experiments.
The project are something between "fantasy" and "reality", a parallel world.
It's about to end but I still need some voice actors. (specialised sites will cost about 200$ for SINGLE actor! 0.0)


@ Paul Mesken:
Thanks for the suggestions! Now I will search for that book, I think can be useful.
About the background, there are many scenes, mains are a desert, a dark woods, a dark cavern with deep underground river and a green hill.
It's always daytime, no night and the light it's ever from the "zenith".
To give impression of "alternative reality" the sky is pink and white, the desert sand is brown and yellow and the carvern's walls is black and dark red and river's water in the cavern will be purple and light red.

I decided to draw background with Artweaver using chalk brush to give an "ethereal" mood to it.
I'll put here two old examples of the desert:

Image
Image

In this way, chars will pop up (drawn in vectors, no textures).
I need to change the colors of BGs too?

To both:
Thank very much! Your help are very useful for me! ^.^
Sorry for my bad english... Q_Q
Paul Mesken
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Post by Paul Mesken » Mon May 17, 2010 3:15 pm

Well, the colors of your backgrounds are all "warm" colors (reds, yellows, browns, etc.) so you could make the colors of the characters "cool" (blue, green, etc.).

However : you do the backgrounds with a different texture than that of the characters (assuming the characters will be colored flatter). This will also create a contrast.

The texture contrast might be enough to get a good seperation of characters and background (you'd have to put in the characters to see what happens). In the cartoon "The Happy Tree Friends" they use a similar thing. The backgrounds there are painted on paper (well, a paper emulation in the software, actually) with more grain so that it gives a slight aquarel look whereas the characters themselves are colored completely flat (no grain). It's very subtle (I didn't even notice it until I heard about it in the commentary) but also very effective because it does the job (of seperating) and it's not "in your face".

Color is not the only thing that can achieve a good seperation. I see that your backgrounds have a very horizontal theme to them. The characters are, of course, vertical. They will "poke through" those horizontal bars of the background and this alone will make them stand out. So, a hard color contrast might not be necessary if there is already a contrast in both texture and orientation.

It's really a balancing act. On the one hand you want it to be technically sound (correct exposition of the action, the characters, etc.) on the other hand it should have mood.

In this case a mood that is carried by color mostly ("out of this world" colors, they used that in Phantasm as well). If you want a color scheme consisting mostly of browns, pinks, oranges then chosing lime green for a character will definitely make it pop. But it will also be ugly and over the top and destroy the mood (which should permeate all the elements in a frame).

You really have to try it out with the characters and see if it still "reads" well without destroying the mood you seek. It's pretty hard to do but a lot easier if you realize that it's all about contrasts, not only contrast of color but also of texture, shape, line, motion, etc.
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Kuler

Post by jeff » Wed May 19, 2010 10:06 am

There is a superb site from Adobe dedicated entirely to colour. I can't recommend it highly enough: http://kuler.adobe.com/

If ever you are having problems with colour palettes, there are many ways of finding inspiration here.
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Imago
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Post by Imago » Wed May 19, 2010 10:10 am

Wow! :shock:
Thanks man! :D
This site is great!
Sorry for my bad english... Q_Q
jeff
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Post by jeff » Wed May 19, 2010 10:16 am

Re-Kuler; for anyone having problems figuring out what the site is about, have a look at this page:

http://www.adobe.com/products/kuler/

It's free!
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Imago
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Post by Imago » Wed May 19, 2010 10:27 am

An AIR application?
It's totally free?

P.S.
Kuler needs a login to save colur swatches to pc.
The saved file can be used whit graphics programs like CS3 or Artweaver?ù
If I can use the directly without "Cut-paste" every Hex value I can save a lot of time!
Sorry for my bad english... Q_Q
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slowtiger
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Post by slowtiger » Wed May 19, 2010 10:47 am

I'd advise against programs about colour sets, and also against selecting colours just in charts or bars. As others already said, you always need to judge colours in context.

I'd start with general colour moods for the film (or its sequences), then work my way to colour sketches for key backgrounds, and only then start to design colours for my characters. (And one day I really should follow my own advice.)

Here's one of the best sources for background design: http://one1more2time3.wordpress.com/. Hans Bacher's book "Dream Worlds" about production design is worth a look if you really want to dig into that subject. It is maybe a bit slick and glossy, but since he worked at Disney's this might be excused.

There's tons of information hidden on this badly designed site, http://www.animationarchive.org/. Most are about drawing and animating, not much about colour.

Here's the link again to http://drawn.ca/2006/12/07/art-lozzi-ba ... echniques/ on John Kricfalusi's blog, it is worth to search in there for more examples about colours.
Uolter
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Post by Uolter » Wed May 19, 2010 11:06 am

Ciao Imago, guarda caso proprio ieri stavo sfogliando il libro di Itten, in italiano si chiama "arte del colore" puoi trovare l'edizione ridotta edita da Il saggiatore, costa 20 euro.
Un'altro libro che può essere utile è "Dalla teoria del colore" di Goethe...io c'ho un edizione presa alle librerie Giunti, l'ho pagata una fesseria, e un altro libro di sicuro interesse può essere "Lo spirituale nell'arte" di kandinskij.
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toonertime
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another color palette site

Post by toonertime » Wed May 19, 2010 11:59 am

here is another color source site

http://www.colourlovers.com/palettes/se ... page=2[url][/url]
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Imago
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Post by Imago » Wed May 19, 2010 1:12 pm

@ slowtiger:
I liked the Kuler online application only for the possibility of "mixing" the colors and see how it appears near the other colors and for the mixing tools.
The desktop software is only to access to saved tables.
My color mixing abilty is too low to mix and compare colors without any help! :oops:
The One1More2Time3 source are very good, thanks! Now I will study it with attention.

@ Uolter:
Grazie per le dritte, appena ho l'occasione faccio un salto in libreria. :wink:
Spero di trovarli facilmente... In alternativa, conosci qualche negozio online che li venda? Sia cartaceo che PDF va benissimo.

@ Toonertime:
Great site to create patterns!
It can be very useful to create textures for AS.
Often I go bananas to find royalty free textures for my projects.

@ to all:
Thanks very much! Every time I ask for something in this forum, I learn a lot of things! :D
Sorry for my bad english... Q_Q
Uolter
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Post by Uolter » Wed May 19, 2010 4:51 pm

Il libro Itten e quello di Kandinsky io li ho comprati alla feltrinelli, quindi penso che si possano acquistare anche dal sito. Del libro di Itten prendi pure l'edizione ridotta, c'è tutto quello che serve e non diventi povero (quella completa è un gioiello ma costa un'enormità). In verità è anche l'unico libro veramente fondamentale, ci son tutte le tavole ed è prettamente tecnico. Quello di Kandinsky è meno teorico, ma ricco di riflessioni interessanti sulle influenze psicologiche che crea un colore (quindi parlando di animazione può essere molto utile). Quello di Goethe è più un approfondimento sugli effetti della luce in varie situazioni. Questi ultimi 2 son sprovvisti di tavole. Riguardo a Goethe però è utlissimo tenere presente il cerchio cromatico sulla luminosità. Lo trovi in fondo a quest pagina
http://didascienze.formazione.unimib.it ... ttica4.htm
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