Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now

Creating custom swatches

Creating custom swatches provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Justin Seeley as p… Show More

Illustrator for Web Design

with Justin Seeley

Video: Creating custom swatches

Creating custom swatches provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Justin Seeley as part of the Illustrator for Web Design
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 13s
    1. Welcome
    2. Using the exercise files
  2. 43m 51s
    1. Designing for screens
      1m 57s
    2. Decoding screen size and resolution
      2m 40s
    3. Exploring the Illustrator to HTML workflow
      3m 42s
    4. Setting up Illustrator for web work
      6m 55s
    5. Creating a new document for web
      6m 25s
    6. Creating a new document for mobile
      3m 31s
    7. Using artboards for responsive layouts
      7m 42s
    8. Creating email newsletter documents
      4m 31s
    9. Working with Pixel Preview and anti-aliasing
      6m 28s
  3. 25m 28s
    1. Adjusting color settings
      6m 47s
    2. Understanding web color
      3m 47s
    3. Creating a color palette
      5m 4s
    4. Creating custom swatches
      4m 50s
    5. Working with fills and strokes
      5m 0s
  4. 13m 15s
    1. Exploring the Layers panel
      5m 21s
    2. Renaming and grouping layers
      7m 54s
  5. 24m 5s
    1. Drawing simple shapes
      4m 16s
    2. Working with Pathfinder
      5m 4s
    3. Using the Shape Builder tool
      4m 33s
    4. Creating symbols
      6m 24s
    5. Editing and replacing symbols
      3m 48s
  6. 20m 22s
    1. Planning your project
      2m 56s
    2. Using guides and rulers
      5m 56s
    3. Developing a layout with shapes
      6m 21s
    4. Using a grid system
      5m 9s
  7. 25m 53s
    1. Exploring the rules of typography
      4m 1s
    2. Using text as text vs. using text as an image
      3m 37s
    3. Understanding web-safe fonts
      1m 46s
    4. Creating and using paragraph styles
      5m 16s
    5. Creating and using character styles
      3m 2s
    6. Simulating the CSS box model
      8m 11s
  8. 21m 17s
    1. Understanding object appearance
      4m 43s
    2. Applying and editing live effects
      3m 34s
    3. Creating and using drop shadows
      3m 13s
    4. Creating more flexible rounded rectangles
      3m 17s
    5. Saving appearance as graphic styles
      6m 30s
  9. 35m 57s
    1. Starting with a wireframe
      5m 23s
    2. Adding master elements
      6m 45s
    3. Creating navigation buttons
      13m 34s
    4. Working with photographs
      5m 50s
    5. Simulating pages with artboards
      4m 25s
  10. 54m 45s
    1. Creating video placeholders
      10m 33s
    2. Creating buttons
      13m 1s
    3. Creating form fields
      8m 15s
    4. Creating radio boxes and checkboxes
      5m 11s
    5. Creating progress bars
      10m 12s
    6. Creating tabbed interfaces
      7m 33s
  11. 35m 28s
    1. Understanding slicing
      3m 26s
    2. Slicing up a mockup
      3m 6s
    3. Understanding web file formats
      5m 33s
    4. Exploring the Save for Web dialog
      3m 50s
    5. Optimizing photographs
      4m 29s
    6. Optimizing transparent graphics
      4m 43s
    7. Saving Retina display graphics
      3m 46s
    8. Exporting SVG graphics
      6m 35s
  12. 9m 29s
    1. Understanding image sprites
      3m 4s
    2. Creating a sprite grid
      4m 36s
    3. Optimizing sprites for the web
      1m 49s
  13. 15m 29s
    1. Placing Illustrator Smart Objects
      3m 22s
    2. Sharing color swatches between apps
      2m 9s
    3. Exporting Illustrator artwork as a PSD
      3m 49s
    4. Importing artwork into Fireworks
      2m 41s
    5. Exporting HTML from Illustrator
      3m 28s
  14. 1m 19s
    1. Taking the next step
      1m 1s
    2. Goodbye

please wait ...
Creating custom swatches
Video Duration: 4m 50s 5h 27m Appropriate for all


Creating custom swatches provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Justin Seeley as part of the Illustrator for Web Design

View Course Description

This course reveals how designers can create vibrant web graphics, wireframes, and complete web site mockups with the strong layout and color management tools in Adobe Illustrator. Author and Adobe Certified Expert Justin Seeley covers topics such as building responsive layouts with artboards, producing custom color palettes and swatches for web graphics, and making vector shapes and text that seamlessly scale. The course also explores adding drop shadows and other live effects, setting up interface elements such as forms and tabbed interfaces, optimizing and exporting different types of graphics, and speeding up your workflow with reusable image sprites and Smart Objects.

Topics include:
  • Customizing a web workspace
  • Decoding the mysteries behind screen size and resolution
  • Working with Pixel Preview and anti-aliasing
  • Coloring web graphics
  • Renaming and grouping layers
  • Working with shapes and symbols
  • Creating wireframes on a grid
  • Styling text
  • Creating image sprites
  • Simulating web pages with artboards
  • Optimizing and exporting your work
Design Web

Creating custom swatches

As you continue to work with clients in your web design business, chances are they are going to be throwing assets at you left and right, especially when it comes to color. Inevitably, you will get something sent to you by a client that was clipped out of a magazine or scanned into their computer, or even like me, someone once sent me the patch off of a hat that I had to sample colors from in order to create a logo. It was crazy. So as you start to get these assets into Illustrator, we need to learn how to sample those colors, and turn them into usable swatches which we can then share with other designers and other applications to use a consistent color palette across the board.

In this movie, I'll be exploring how to create those custom swatches and also how to save them out as an .ase file, or Adobe Swatch Exchange file, for use in other applications. So I've got this file open here, and let's say that this color strip was sent to me by a client. They copied it out of the magazine. They just put some things on paper, scanned it in, and sent it to me. So here it is! And so what I need to do is get these swatches into my Swatches panel and then I need to be able to save those out in order to use them in other applications and share them with other people in my workgroup. So the first thing I'm going to do is start sampling the colors with the Eyedropper tool.

So I'm just going to hit the letter I on my keyboard, and that's instantly going to give me the Eyedropper tool. Then I'm simply going to move right here and click, and that's going to automatically set my fill color to the color that I click on. So, once I have that done, I can come over here into my Swatches panel--and I'll actually drag it out so you can see it--and I'm going to click on the New Swatch icon, just like so. And once I do that, I'm just going to name this Client Dark Purple. Hit OK. There it saves it right there. If I hover over that color, it says Client Dark Purple.

Sample this, create a new swatch, Client Blue Green. Hit OK. It adds that in. I always hover over these, just to make sure that it's getting them correct. Sample the next, Client Light Yellow, hit OK; sample this one, Client Burnt Orange, hit OK. And then finally, this one is just white, but I'm going to sample it anyway, just in case there's any values that I don't see in there. Client White.

And each time I'm creating this new swatch, I'm careful to make sure that my Color Type is set to Process and that my Color mode is always on RGB, because when we are working with the web, we want to work in RGB color. So I hit OK. So once I do that, it's going to add it up there. I can always move it. I just click and drag it down to these right here. If I want these in their own color group, that's easy to do. I'll just come here, create a new color group, and I'll call this Client Swatches, and I'm going to hit OK. Now it threw a color in there for me already. What I'm going to do now is just remove that.

Then I'll come here and select each one of these by Shift+Clicking, and then I'll drag them down and I'll just put them right next to the group. And I'll undo that so you can see exactly how I did this again. I'm going to select, hold down Shift, and then I'm going to drag these down, and watch the little blue line that appears right next to the folder. It's hard to see with my mouse in the way, but once I see that little blue line appear, I let it go, and there we go. Now, I can select the group, and it selects all of them just by clicking the folder, and then I can save this out as an Adobe Swatch Exchange file. So in order to do that, what I'm going to do is get rid of all the colors that I'm not using currently.

So I'm just going to come here, hold down Shift, and go all the way to the top, like this, and click to get rid of all these colors. I'll just trash them out, just like so. So now I've got only my color group left. And I'll go to the right-hand side of the Panel menu, and I'm going to go down to Save Swatch Library as ASE, Adobe Swatch Exchange. I'll put this on to my desktop, and I'm just going to call this Swatches.ase and hit Save. It's going to warn me that swatches containing gradients or patterns are not currently exchangeable, and that's okay.

These are all solid colors, so you have nothing to worry about here. I'll hit OK to that. And so now, I can close up this document because I've saved it out. I don't need it anymore. I can hit Don't Save. And I'll create a brand document. Let's say that I wanted to create a brand-new document for this client. You'll notice when I start this new document that none of those swatches I just created are available to me. I have to go down to this little library icon, go down to Other Library, navigate to my desktop, and you'll see swatches.ase down here at the bottom. I'll hit Open and instantly come in all of my swatches that I had before: Client Dark Purple, Blue Green, Light Yellow, Burnt Orange, and Client White.

So all of those are now available to me anytime I need them in any application that supports ASE files, whether that be Photoshop, Indesign, Illustrator, whatever. So the next time a client sends you some sort of wacky color combination, now you should be able to sample those colors, turn them into swatches, and then export them out for use in other applications or to distribute across your workgroup.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Illustrator for Web Design .

Expand all | Collapse all
please wait ...
Q: Where can I learn more about graphic design?
A: Discover more about this topic by visiting graphic design on





Don't show this message again
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.

Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now Already a member? Log in

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.

Mark all as unwatched Cancel


You have completed Illustrator for Web Design.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


Upgrade to View Courses Offline


With our new Desktop App, Annual Premium Members can download courses for Internet-free viewing.

Upgrade Now

After upgrading, download Desktop App Here.

Become a Member and Create Custom Playlists

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of online learning video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Log in

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

You started this assessment previously and didn’t complete it.

You can pick up where you left off, or start over.

Resume Start over

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.