Tiny Color Tweaks in Photoshop

Sometimes in Photoshop you need to tweak a color just a tiny bit and having to drag that circle selector around the color chooser can be, well, a drag. It’s not very precise, particularly when you’re making tiny adjustments. So ditch the selector and use the H S B fields. I only figured this out a year or so ago and it amazes me how much I use it now, particularly when creating color palettes. A quick overview on what each fields does:

H or HUE
This is the actual color. The hue number relates to the spectrum, that long rainbow-like column. As you raise the number you can see the color change.

This is purity of the color, or how colorful your color is. 0 means no color, thus gray. 100 means full-color bonanza.

B or Brightness
How light or dark the color is.

Photoshop color picker!

So when you’ve got a slight adjustment to make, put your cursor in a field and use your arrow keys to move the number up or down. For example, it’s nice to add a little color in a gray. First I would select something close to the hue (actual color) I wanted. Then using the S (saturation) field and raise or lower the number to pull out color until you get just the hint of hue you’re after. Need it a little brighter? TAB down to the B (brightness field).

Try it yourself! Make some grays with just a hint of color. Add some saturation, make it a little brighter, pull out a little saturation, change the hue to a different shade. You’ll get the hang of it in no time and hone in on the exact color you want.

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