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2.2 Creating and Using Color

In this lesson, you’ll learn how to create new colors in InDesign. We’ll look at how to create your own custom colors as well as using corporate colors. If you want to know about the InDesign color picker, color mode, color swatches, and more, watch this video.

2.2 Creating and Using Color

Hi, there. This video is all about making color on squares. We got a big one, little one [LAUGH]. Okay, but mainly, it's about creating your own custom colors, what the difference between CMYK colors versus RGB colors are and also how to make premade corporate colors if you've got them. How to put them into design and re use them. All right let's jump in now and work out color. Okay so let's talk about color so first up let's create a rectangle. We need something for our color to show in. Okay so there's two rectangles, the rectangle frame tool is like a place holder. It's like a rectangle with a cross through it to say, in the future, images might go here. You are totally allowed to use those boxes, I never do, I just use the regular rectangle which is underneath. Now, if you can't see the rectangle, you might be on ellipse, click hold, hold, hold, hold the mouse key down. Then click on the rectangle tool and draw out a rectangle and yours is probably not gonna look like mine. What ends up happening is it actually fills with whatever the last color you were using. So yours might have no fill, no color. Yours might have a line around the outside, but no center. Let's fix that, and at the same time, look at some of the colors. So I draw my rectangle, it's still selected, so little dots in the corner. If yours is not selected, grab this tool, okay? It's the top black arrow, it's called a Selection tool, just click on it once. And over here, in your Appearance panel, you can see the fill and the stroke. The stroke is the line around the outside. So let's first of all go to the Fill and click on the little square here. Your's might have a little red line through it, it might be a different color. Okay, let's just click on, in my case it's black. Okay, and over here, I'm gonna click on this first option that says swatches. What is a swatch? They're just pre-mixed colors and InDesign decided these are the ones that you should be using, or at least the starting ones. And let's have a play. Okay, so let's, first of all, make the center of it green or red or yellow or magenta, or whatever color you want to. Let's make it yellow, whatever you want to. Do what I say, make it yellow, okay? And then with the stroke, now this thing here is kinda hovering out. To get rid of it just kinda click in this no-man's land up here, just click once and this disappears back into its little house. Okay, let's click on the same little icon here, stroke, and let's pick a color. And let's pick black because I want to show it as contrast. Over here next to stroke, see this little arrow here, you can use the drop down. And you can pick a bigger size or you can just use this little up arrow or down arrow, the tiny. But I guess I wanted to show you the difference between fill and a stroke. Fill is the center part and stroke is the outside. So let's have a look at the different premade swatches you've got. Okay, so let's click on Fill. I'll click on the little yellow icon, the little spot here, and I'm on my swatches. And on the bottom here, you'll see these are the premixed colors. Those are, I don't really need to talk about those, other than they're hideous, some premixed colors. There's this one black, and registration and they look exactly the same. I'm not gonna cover registration too much now, it's a go and Google it type of thing, but never use it. It's a printer's only thing, it's rich black, so it gets quite, not complicated, but it's a whole another video that will be super boring at this kind of level, okay? We'll just use black, don't use registration. The other weird thing is paper, okay, although that's white, it's not empty. None means it's got nothing in the middle, okay, watch this, I'll show you. I'll move it across to the edge, grab the edge of it, so grab the actual black edge of it to move it out. You can see that has a fill of none. But if I make it white, it's different. And when I say white, I mean paper. InDesign tries to be clever. Basically, we all know if I put blue paper into my printer right next to me here and hit print, I'm not gonna get any white. It's going to show through the blue paper. So that's the reason I call it paper and not white. So ugly colors, black and none, paper, never use registration. Now let's say that we don't like these colors. We wanna mix our own, we wanna go super creative and we wanna mix our own color. You can use this option here, so we're on swatches, click on color, and down the bottom here it's gonna have this ugly slider. What we're gonna do in this top little slidy thing, the burger menu, let's click on RGB. It changes to my red, green, and blue mixer, and we can just click it anywhere down in here, okay, and pick our own custom color. Now if yours is not changing, just make sure with your black arrow, you've got this guy selected. Go back in here, go to my little color palette, and we should be able to pick any color we like. Now you might have seen in the there, you might have heard in the past, RGB versus CMYK. Okay, those are the two kinds colors you're gonna use. And you can see a real big difference there between this green which is RGB green, or this kind of like, I want to say snifter green. But you wouldn't have snifters in your country, [LAUGH] it's like a spearmint kind of lolly chocolate thing. Anyway, let's say spearmint peppermint, it's some kinda minty color. Now, RGB is what your computer screen uses to mix colors, and it's a bigger color range. It has more richer colors because your little monitor right in front of you right now has a lots of light coming out of it. Luminance that helps get some really crazy colors like this kind of nuclear, Madonna pink and kind of toxic green color, okay? But when it comes to your printer, we all know if I printed that at your home computer, it's gonna wash out, right? It's gonna look great on screen and then get all washed out. And that's just because your printer doesn't have light coming out of it like your screen. So which color should you use? CMYK, boo. RGB, yay, okay? So if your document, like this document here, this brochure, it's gonna have dual purpose. It's going to be something sent to the printer, they're gonna print it off. It's also gonna be something that gets downloaded from our website, or emailed out. So we'll start with RGB, and later on when we go to export, we'll convert it all to CMYK for the printer, boo. This is kind of best of both worlds. If you're only going to print, there's no point getting all excited with these colors only to know that you're gonna go to CMYK. And your next question is, well how do I make this better? Unfortunately you can't, CMYK goes onto paper, and just washes out. You can make it darker or lighter, but you can't make it that rich, vibrant color that it was. It just is not possible with the ink, inks that come with your printer. So the rule is, if I'm mixing colors and I'm going to go, say I'm printing my business card. I'm not going to trick myself using this and only be disappointed later on by using CMYK when it gets printed. But if my business card is going to be used online to something, I'm gonna use RGB and then when I export, I'm gonna export two versions, one for online which will be RGB and at the end, I can convert everything to CMYK in one fell swoop. So that's a bit of nerdy colorness. It's probably not what you hoped for, you just want to mix the colors and keep going. But I guess at this stage, we need to start using the correct colors. We're gonna use RGB in this case. Let's say we like this color and we wanna use it a couple of different times. Instead of trying to mix it every time you can go this option here that says add to swatches. Swatches is this first little panel here of pre-mixed colors. So I can randomly pick a color back to my pigment and let's go to here and go to Add to Swatches. And If I go to my Swatches panel now, right on the bottom, there's my RGB color, red, green and blue, that make sense. So later on I can go through, and I can draw something and I can go over to here in my fill and down the bottom on my swatches tab, right down the bottom, there's my mint green. Hello mint green. All right, let's say though that you're working for a company and have already got colors. So what I'm gonna do is gonna delete that. I'll keep this guy here. And let's say that, yeah, we can't just use any old color. We've gotta use our corporate colors. Now, to get your corporate colors, you're gonna have to either talk to your designer or the designer who originally made your brand, or hopefully maybe, you might even have a brand guideline somewhere. It's probably in your third drawer down, all dusty. Have a look through there and see if you can find the colors that the designers have decided that that was right for your company. For visit NZ, or visit New Zealand, I've got some cooperate colors, okay. I've typed them out for you in your exercise files, there's one in there called colors, double-click it, okay, and there they are there. And I'm gonna show how to put them into InDesign, so I'm gonna do some rejigging of my, I don't want you to do this because I want you to carry on. I'm gonna stick it there so you can see it, I can see it. Actually, I'll stick it on the side, make it easier for the editor to zoom in, all right. So I've got my black arrow selected, I'm in InDesign. I've got this selected. I'm gonna go to Fill. I wanna create my own crazy color. But really, I'm gonna go to the little burger menu, I'm using RGB. And I'll just type in the numbers here so you can see whenever they're listed, they're always listed as red, green, and blue. So you can see here that's not like not R equals or G equals, always assume, same as CMYK, it always assumes this same order. Okay, so 53, 120 and 114, that is the color. I'm gonna drop this down and say add to swatches. I'm gonna check my little swatches panel to make sure at the bottom there, it's there. Okay, and I'm gonna give it a name. I totally skipped that step. You double click it to give it a name, so we can see it says RGB numbers there, just double click it anywhere along on there. And let's go see if it says name with color, let's call this one VNZ Green and let's click OK. Makes it a little easier to work with, this little mint correct color we had before, I'm gonna bin him, good bye. Okay, to bin him you click on him and you hit the little trash can there. So I've got my VNZ, let's mix up the third color which is the red, it's not quite red but you'll get the idea. We'll do it one more time to get that and then we'll fast-forward the last one. So make sure you got this guy selected, click on fill, hit the little color icon, switch it to RGB. And then in here I'm gonna go 192. I'm gonna hit Tab cuz I like tabbing through these to make it a little faster. So 192, 62 and 84 [LAUGH]. Okay, it gives me my, I call it red. It's not red. Don't even know what to call it, stuck in the middle of my color naming groups but anyway you get the idea. Okay, we're gonna add it to our swatches just like before, we're gonna go to our swatches, double click it. And we're gonna say name with color value and I think you VNZ, we're gonna call this one red even though you're screaming at me going, it's not red. It's, I don't even hazard to guess, it's like a rose or, I don't know what to say, [LAUGH] let's click OK. And I'll get you to do the last one by yourself. It's the slate color, and I'll get the editor to speed me up, all right? I'll see you in a sec. All right, you're back. So let's apply our colors. So we'll start with this guy, we've used him. I'm going to give him the color of the slate. So the fill color, make sure it's on the slate, where it comes to the stroke. Click on the little edge here, scroll to the top, go to none, make sure you're on swatches, okay. And so it's got another line on the outside and it has got slate as the fill. Now we're gonna resize this thing. So we're gonna use the selection tool so the black arrow, make sure it's selected. Let's grab this top left-hand corner. You'll notice that that when you get close to the edge, you get this like diagonal errors. Click on that and just drag it. Okay, I'm dragging it with my mouse and where do I drag it to? Do I drag it to the edge of the white? No, we drag it all the way out to the bleed which is the red line. That means that there's this little chunk of the slate that's going to get sliced off by the guillotine into the bin. Why do you bother doing that? Why don't you just go to the edge? It's because often the guillotine is not as fancy as you think. There's often it's just a person standing there with a guillotine lining up your page, tongue out going, slice. And they need a bit of wiggle room to get it right or wrong, so I get it close enough. So you need a little bit of extra on there. So at the bottom right, I'm gonna drag down, down, down, down, down, so it covers all the way to the inch of the rid. If you have dragged yours, this happens drag and you end up kinda like, aah, all over the place. Don't worry, go to View, go back to Fit Spread in Window, and it should come back to normal, and just be very careful. Try and get it down there. All right, one rectangle, let's grab the Rectangle tool. There's lots of them that look the same. Even me, [LAUGH], I clicked on that one by accident. Make sure, it's a test. You gotta click on this one here, and what I'm gonna do is, I'm gonna draw another rectangle. And this one here's going to be, just drag it in the middle, not too worried about it. And make sure it has a fill of, down the bottom here, VNZ Green, okay, and make sure it has no strokes, I click on the stroke and go to none. I'm gonna resize this one, grab the black arrow, I'm going to drag this down, roughly about a third, okay, and we're gonna have this two-toned. You saw at the beginning of this video, you saw the beginning of this course, what we're kinda making this kinda two-tone-y thing. So slate box, green box, let's do one more, drag it out, and let's give it a fill of the not read. There you go and make sure it's got no stroke and we're not too worried about the size yet. We're gonna use this as background for some of the ticks we're gonna make so just get used to resizing it. It's gonna be asked for this video bit of a long one, but we learned what RGB versus CMYK is. And we've looked at how to apply fills and strokes quite a bit, plus we're getting used to InDesign in general. In the next video though, we'll do some more advanced navigation. But in the next video, we'll look at some basic navigation to kinda help you move around the document a little easier, let's jump in and check that out now.

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