^Create Your Own (Hybrid) Web-Safe Colors

From time to time, I come across a client whose main logo color is not part of the web-safe palette. Although I don't force all colors in my web designs to be web-safe, a logo is usually the one thing a client wants to make sure looks as uniform as possible across all users' systems. So what do you do when a client's logo color isn't web-safe?

By mixing two or more existing web-safe colors in a checkerboard fashion, you can actually create what's commonly referred to as a hybrid web-safe color. As long as you use colors that are similar in value, the checkerboard pattern will be virtually unnoticeable when viewed in a web page, because our eyes mix the colors and make them appear as one. See Figure 4-8 for an example.

Figure 4-8 When viewed at 100%, the fact that th is is really two colors is virtually unnoticeable; when a portion of the image is enlarged the pattern is revealed.

TRY IT To create your own hybrid web-safe color in Photoshop, choose File I New and create a new file that is only 2x2 pixels in size. Then follow these steps:

1. Use the Zoom tool to zoom in to 1600% (the most you can zoom) or type 1600% in the lower-left corner of the image window as shown here:

2. Place the two colors you wish to blend together in the foreground and background color swatches. You can do so by either clicking on the swatch to display the Color Picker or selecting colors from your Swatches or Color palettes.

3. Use the Pencil tool (which is hidden behind the Paintbrush tool in the toolbox) and the smallest brush—1 pixel in diameter—to color in the upper-left and lower-right pixels of your 4-pixel file with the foreground color.

4. Press X on your keyboard to switch the foreground and background color swatches.

5. Again use the Pencil tool and the smallest brush to paint the upper-right and lower-left pixels of your file, this time with the other color.

At this point, you have a very tiny file with a small checkerboard of color. You can use the steps outlined in the following tip to preview how this new color will look when used.

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