Making Good Web Page Color Choices

These websites provide helpful information about the use of color on the web. Color Wheel (or Color Circle) is a basic concept that relates colors by their distance from each other on a wheel. Sliders generate workable color options based on the wheel, and given your starting point. Emotional Meanings gives insight into cultural impacts of various colors. Enjoy!

What to do? First decide on your major colors. To help with that, look at the emotional meanings, or look at the graphics that you will be using. Next, look at the color wheel or sliders to generate a compatible swatch of colors to work with. Last, color your page. See whether it works for you. If not, pick a new starting point and go around again.

Color Wheel Theory: Complements, Analogs, Splits

This is a good place to start learning about colors. The color wheel is defined and shown, and various combinations of colors are taken from it, including complementary (opposite) colors, split complementary, triads, tetrads, and analogous (adjacent) colors.

Worqx   Color Theory, by Janet Lynn Ford. Awesome website, highly recommended.

Tiger   Certain Web Design   Creative Pro   Colors on the Web

Glossary of Color Theory Terminology by Janelle Sullivan, QuickShip Toner.

PDF Files   Color Theory, by various authors.

Color Palate Sliders: Make Your Own Palate

Sliders let you pick how much red, green, and blue. From this it gives you a palatte of matching colors.

Hyper Gurl (eight)   Color Blender (six)   Dzine Labs (you pick)

Colors Can Have Emotional Meanings

These web pages explore the cultural and psychological linkages between colors and emotions. Is green money, or envy?

color-wheel-pro:   Color Wheel Pro - See Color Theory in Action (software)

newark1:   Choosing Web Design Colors. Donald Peterson

webdesign:   Web Site Design Content - Why Colors are King. Brian McGregor

about:   Chart of Cultural Symbolism. Jennifer Kyrnin

Microsoft:   Microsoft Office Color Advice. Katherine Nolan, 2003.

oakwebworks:   How To Choose Your Website Colors. Jason OConnor, 2005.


pictaculous   Convert a picture into a palate of compatable colors

webdesignledger   10 Super Useful Tools for Choosing the Right Color Palette. Henry Jones.

ezinearticles   Making Colors Sell. Scott J Bradley, 2010.

Web Dev Notes   Lots of Color Swatches.

avangate   (Mostly about Contrast) Choosing the Right Colors for Your Web Site. 2008.

VisiBone   Web Safe Colors (boring) but good comparison of foreground on background. Stein. 2008.

Using Color Theory to Enhance Your Room   Resource list plus introduction to color wheel, warm v cool, and mood. Carina. 2017. (Suggested by Henlee Phillips)

Interior Design Elements: All About Color. (Suggested by Michelle, 2022, of the Lyndhurst Stem Club for Girls)


Background picture is by Lois Colton, 2005, Laie Point, Hawaii.

Color palate is by Pictaculous, based on the background picture.

Websites were submitted by students in my IT 240 Web Page Development class in February 2011.

This page was created by Don Colton.   Validate: html5 css3

Note: This page was last seriously updated in 2017. Since that time a substantial number of the links have died (become 404). Sorry about that.