Fancy Font Pro Tip #5 Font Color

Adding color to collages can be a lot of fun, but sometimes it’s not as easy as it seems. I remember when I just started making collages, I used to think, just use black or white for the text color, it’s safe and easy to use. But after making more collages it seemed to me that black or white was not always the the answer, and sometimes it takes a bit of exploration to get it right. What is more accurate when choosing color is not boxing yourself into the choice of black or white, but comparing between contrast and harmony with the rest of the colors in your collage. From there, you will be able to make the best decision for what color your words should be. Before we go into color details, let’s check out how to change font colors in PicCollage:

Step 1: press on the “text” buttonStep 2: after typing in your words, press on the paint palette iconStep 3: choose your colors!

Now that we know where to go to find text and how to change the color, how do we know that we are choosing a good colors for our collages?

Usually what I would do is figure out the base color of the image: 

In the first image, you can see the base color is primarily black, there are some secondary colors and shades of yellow from the dog’s fur and red/pink from the dog’s tongue. 

The most contrasted color you can use for your text against black is white, if you wanted something more harmonious, you could try a color that has a mix of black and white, which would make grey. If you wanted to make a statement, you could use the color red, making it seem like the message you want to convey is a photo of a dangerous dog. What helps to tie the red color of the text in a bit more is the red color of the dog’s tongue. Choosing colors that are associated with other colors in the photo will help tie in the color theme of the imagery as a whole making it feel like the relationship between colors are more consistent. 

In the second image, the base of the photo is white. We can try to collage this image so that it looks like a handmade message that Garry would to send to his motorbiking friends. If we wanted to focus to be on Garry and the motorbike trip, then we can use the most harmonious text color – white, it blends into the color of the stairs. If we wanted the message to be clearer, black would be a good choice. Choosing blue would add a different flavor to the collage – the blue shade is similar to the jeans Garry is wearing, and at the same time, the contrast is enough so that the words are readable. Using the blue ink also connects the idea of writing on the photo with a blue pen.

Some images have an equal amount of color in them and it’s hard to determine which is the primary color. If you can’t determine one color, you can also list out 2 or 3 colors. In this collage, it is made with a background photo of a yellow wall, with the photo of two friends hugging in a lavendar field. You can see that the base color in the photo is a combination of yellow and bluish-purple. Black would make the words very clear, while using a lighter yellow would make the words a lot more softer, placing most of the focus on the photo of the two girls. The middle photo using purple is an attempt to find a middle ground using the shade of a darker lavender so that you can still see the words, but the color purple will also make them harmonious with the purple colors of lavender. 

In the last example, we can see that the base color is blue – many shades of blue, so then a more simpler treatment of the words is to just use white. For a more dynamic look, you could do a play on color, finding other shades of blue that woud bring out some monotone contrast colors between the words, the sky and the waves. Using white as an accent color can place the main focus on the word “surfing”

Some times you can try new ideas to help your words stand out in a more interesting way. The example below uses different colors on each letter to emphasize the playfulness of the word cute. However this will take a bit of patience because you will need to type out each word and color each one differently. The idea of these 4 letters is to make them stand out, so then although the same color elements can be found in the imagery: dark blue stripes on sweater, yellowish green and pink lining on the rim of the hoodie, but adjusted to a lighter, brighter shade so that they look more cute!

And of course, if all else fails and you can’t seem to find the color and effect you are looking for – often because there might be too many colors in the background making it distracting to add in words, one really simple tip is to add a text background color to seperate the background image and your text so that you can see the photo and your message clearly:

Hope this will give you some ideas on how to color your text. We look forward to seeing your your designs by tagging #mypiccollage when sharing on Instagram, and maybe you’ll get featured on our page!

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