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Creating, editing and applying colors in QuarkXPress I think is really a joyful experience. You work with colors in either the Colors palette over here or if you have an item selected, down here on the Measurements palette in any one of the these places where you can apply a color. Now, on the Measurements palette, you can not only apply colors, you can also create new ones. But you'll usually do most of your color editing and color work here in the Colors palette. The Colors palette gives you options for creating new colors, editing existing colors and applying colors to frames, pictures and their backgrounds.
If this were a text box I had selected, it would show text color and text box background. When working with colors, it's a good idea to not have any items on the page selected. That way you don't accidentally apply those colors to the selected item. The easiest way to do that is simply hit the Escape key on your keyboard and that deselects all the items on your page. If you want to delete a color from the list, just select it and hit the Trashcan. Let's start by creating a new color. We'll click the Plus button or Ctrl- click or right-click on the Colors palette and you can choose New.
You can either give your New Color a name right away or if you're going to be choosing from one of the color matching systems, such as Focaltone, Pantone, Toyo for example, you can just select one of these systems and then type in a number. Let's say you're printing on matte paper and you're going to use a Pantone Solid Color, you can either scroll through here and choose the color that you want, or you can type in a specific number. If you find one near the color you want, but want one slightly different, you can click on it and notice that the Name becomes the name of the color matching system color.
When you click OK, it's added to the Colors palette and named the color that you left it. Now, let's create a new color. And this time, we won't choose it from one of these color matching systems. We'll create it from scratch. If the output intent of your document is for on-screen use, or for Desktop Color printing, you may want to make an RGB color. It has a wider color gamut than CMYK, and so you can use more vibrant colors, but if you think you're going to be going to a CYMK printing process, such as a printing press, definitely work in CYMK when you can, so that you're not surprised by the colors when they are printed.
Since this document is going to be printed out as a brochure, I'm going to work in CMYK. Over here you have sliders that allow you to type in exact numbers, for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, or you can use this slider to lighten and darken your colors and choose a Hue by simply dragging it around this circle. And it works the same way with RGB and these other color models. If you build in the color yourself, you may want to name it according to the kind of use it's going to have or possibly the kind of color that it is.
We might call it Purple-dark. When we click on OK again, it adds it to our Colors palette and we can then apply it to the items on the page. To edit a color, you do just about the same thing. Select the color on the Colors palette. Either click the Pencils Edit, click up here and choose Edit, or either Ctrl-click or right-click on the color and choose Edit. This is actually a handy way to edit colors because you don't actually have to select the colors ahead of time to edit it. For example, I could Ctrl- click on this one and edit it.
Well, I've still got the Purple selected here. Well, let's go ahead and Edit the Purple one and you see the exact dialog box you saw before and you can make any change to it that you could make when you were creating the color. Now let's say you've got a color that you like, but you want to get a slightly different color to maybe try out on your page as well. Let's say we really like this Petstumes Pink but we want to make another version of it in a slightly different tone. We can duplicate it, give it a new name, Petstumes Pink #2 and maybe darken it down.
Say OK and now we have another color we can work with that started out this color, but now is it's own color. Another way to bring colors into your document is through the Append dialog and you can get to it either from File > Append or Edit > Colors. Now the Edit > Colors dialog can be exceptionally handy because not only can you append colors from other documents and to do that you just click the Append button and choose the document that you want to append from.
The colors will show up, you can select which one you want, add it and click OK. But also you can see which colors you're not using in the document. Colors Not Used for example, or Colors In Use. It looks like Colors Not Used and we discover that all of these colors here are not being used in the document. So we could select them all and delete them. Now, there are some colors you can't delete. For example, Cyan and Magenta, because those are two of the process colors that build up many of the other colors.
Try as you like, you can't delete them. Now, once you have some colors in your documents that you want to use, you apply them in any of the usual ways. You can select the item, this table for example, select what it is you want to color, the frame, a picture if it had a picture in it, or this background, and then click on the color. But you can also drag these colors on to page items to preview what they are going to look like. For example, let's take this dark green here and drag it on to the table.
As you drag it on to each cell, it shows you what that would look like if you were to let go and drop it on that item. So, I'll let go right here and there you go. And not only can you drag colors on to the content of boxes, but you can also drag them on to the Frames. Let me make the frame on this table a little bit thicker. We'll just make it 4 points and say OK. Now, if we drag a color, say this green on to the frame, we can see, what it would look like, if I were to drop it there.
I'm going to drop it right on the frame for this table and now we have a green frame table through drag-and-drop. Earlier, we saw how to delete colors that were no longer in use. But what happens if you delete a color that is being used. For example, this purple. If I Ctrl-click or right-click on Purple and choose Delete, it's going to ask me, hey! This thing is being used, what color would you like to replace it with? Wherever it's being used in the document. At that point, you can either choose to replace it with a color or realize, gee! I'm really not ready to get rid of that color and cancel out of it.
The Colors palette in QuarkXPress gives you vast control over creating and editing colors, and even applying them to items on the page. While the Edit Colors dialog, also gives you tools to find the colors that aren't being used, find colors by how they're built, append colors from other documents and even delete multiple colors at once. Combined with the power of creating and applying colors in the Measurements palette, XPress gives you a truly flexible system of working with your colors.
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