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Adding Colors to Your InDesign Documents With Adobe Capture

There are so many options for getting colors into an InDesign document, whether they’re imported or created right within InDesign. With the introduction—and recent coming of age—of the Creative Cloud, those colors can come from a wide range of sources. Having Creative Cloud as a central repository makes quick work of finding color inspiration in one place, and having it immediately available in InDesign. In this post, I’ll cover using Adobe Capture to grab colors from anywhere and bring them into your InDesign documents.

Using the Adobe Capture Mobile App

Recently, Adobe combined its separate capturing apps into one app, logically named Capture. One of those apps-turned-feature is called Colors. Using the Colors feature, you can extract colors from within an image. To get started, open the Capture app, tap on the Colors menu at the top, then click the plus icon near the bottom. The app immediately launches into camera mode, but you can change the capture mode by tapping the picture in the lower right corner (it will be a thumbnail of the last photo you took). You then have the option to capture from the device’s camera roll, a Creative Cloud asset, Adobe Market item, or even a preview image from Adobe Stock.

Once you’ve loaded up an image to work with, Capture samples five colors from that image to create a color theme. But you’re not stuck with whatever colors the app first chooses. You can move the selector points around the image, choosing colors that you want in the color theme.

Tip: Remember, you’re selecting only one pixel from the image as your target color, so move the points slowly and deliberately. You might be surprised what colors are hiding in your image!


Once you’re satisfied with the theme’s palette, tap the shutter button. The next screen lets you name the theme, assign it to a Creative Cloud Library, and choose whether or not to make the theme public or private. Making it public puts it on Adobe’s Color site for other users to access. You’ll also get a URL that you can copy to share the theme with others.

In InDesign, the color theme will be immediately available to you in the CC Libraries panel, and in the Adobe Color Themes panel under My Themes.

adobe capture colors search

From either place, you can apply colors to items in your document, or add colors to your Swatches panel.

adobe capture color theme swatches panel

If you choose to make your color theme private, only you and your collaborators can access it. You can also view—and reuse—the image used to create the theme’s palette.


Erica Gamet

Erica Gamet

Erica Gamet is a speaker, writer, and trainer, focusing on Adobe InDesign and Illustrator, Apple Keynote and iBooks Author, and other production-related topics. With over 25 years experience in the graphics industry, she is a regular contributor to After living as a nomad, she recently put down roots in El Paso, Texas, where she hikes and bikes every chance she gets.
Erica Gamet

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