How I survive working as a Colorblind designer 👁🌈👻
Your weakness may limit your movement. But your creativity will help you out and survive.
Having flaws is normal for humans. Nobody is perfect. On the other hand, Let’s thank god for his justice, He is very fair by giving bidders in the form of strengths for humans. Things that make our lives still feel very acceptable if we can look deeper into ourselves.
Having color blindness was initially like a shocking disaster. Because actually, the world I see is colorful. I can recognize blue, green, red, orange without any problems. Everything was normal until finally 8 years ago when I decided to enroll in a chemical vocational high school. They require me to take a vision test, named Ishihara color blind test. I did not know anything at that time, initially quite confident. I can easily answer the first three pages. But then on the next page, everything seems like a mixture of colorful bubbles. I can no longer see the numbers or even anything clear in it. In the end, I was failed and realized that this deficiency hit me hard at the time.
But then, after almost 10 years of my career. I realize that colorblind is not the end of the world. Creativity will help us to survive, there’s always a way if we’re looking for it.
These are my survival tips, hope it will work for you.
Use a color picker software
There is a lot of color picker apps on the internet. It helps you to recognize a color located in a very narrow territory between the others. I have difficulties recognizing the color located on the gap between gold, orange, and brown. Since I use PC and Mac simultaneously, I found 2 apps that help me to fix this.
1. Sip (Available on Mac App Store)
Sip help me not only to recognize the colors but also give me the color code in various format. If you’re a front-end developer, this tool will also help you. Sip scanning the color on your screen and able to recognize the color name (this one is useful too), every color you pick will be saved in the color history feature, so you don't need to pick the same point every damn time, just check the history easily. Sip is a paid app, but as long as I used it, the price is worth it.
2. Instant Eyedropper (Available free for Windows)
Instant Eyedropper is a mini tool in Windows that helps you to pick colors easily using your cursor. As easy as you click and drag the pointer to your desired point. Even not as good as Sip does, but this tool is available for free it's worth your try.
3. Use online tools to help you decide a color to use
In case you had a confusing time deciding what color to use or which palette. You can get some mix and match color set from Adobe Color. The Explore feature will help you to find your design mood. Or if you need a color set to use, and you don't have time to define any, Flat UI colors will help you to find a suitable color set.
Use Dribbble to find a great Color Scheme
Dribbble is a great place to get so many inspirations around the world. Even I’m not regularly posting my design here, but I use Dribbble every day to simply refresh my mind with so many great artworks here. Anytime you find an interesting color scheme in some design there, you can easily pick the color scheme or even download it in .ACO format that can be used in Photoshop.
Use, learn and enjoy nature’s gradients
Mother nature provides us with so many examples of interesting and stunning gradients that everyone can enjoy. Nature’s gradient has a natural harmony (exactly) that can be implemented in the designs we make. Here are some example design using nature gradients that you can try at home
The implementation of the gradients not only limited to components. Giving a full section a nature gradient is also stunning. But as little notes, please use only a color shade from brighter to darker one, avoid using black colors if you come from primary color. The keyword is a shade. Have a try!
“The purest and most thoughtful minds are those which love color the most.”
― John Ruskin, The Stones of Venice
That’s all folks! Here, I just want to share my experience and my tools. I may miss any important apps, but as long as I working with design, those are my basic set. Do you have another one to use? Maybe you can recommend me something new, let’s share your working set and thoughts in the comments field!
Have a nice day!