Blog 5: Color Circle Tools

Blog 5 – Color-Circle Tools


Before presenting a lot of tutorials … it might be helpful to understand what color tools are being used to modify an image border to get something that we really want to purchase.

Here are some important points to remember about FAA color options:

    • The color Patches and mat Patches are NOT used to color the images.
    • The Color Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box cannot be used to color images.
    • The only parts that can be colorized are the borders around the image.*
    • The borders are optional on most FAA products.
    • Many images can be used without applying borders.

*On some products the Background Color is presented on a different layer than the image (i.e., some Carry-all Pouches with flowers or designs) … which allows the images to “rest” on Background Color.

We should run through the color options you can have with FAA images so that you can make easier decisions about the use of the color tools:

    • Color Mats (Top, Bottom, None)
    • Color Patches (choices from 1 to 72 colors)
    • Color Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box

What are Color Mats?

Color Mats are usually found in the Wall Art category. The number of colors patches for Color Mats can vary … and are often related to the Frame style chosen for the Framed Print. Note: Some Prints … without frames … can also have Mat choices.

Where do we find Color Mats? We usually find them in the Wall Art category. Here is a short tutorial on how to find them (using the same Coffee Mug example):

    • Click >
    • Click > Collections
    • Click > Coffee Mugs – Card Games
    • Click > Ambush Power Poker [Image with Ace of Heart]
    • Click > Wall Art
    • Click > Framed Print
    • Click > Print Size … Click > 20” x 30”
    • Click > SHAPE … Natural
    • Click > Frame V… Hover Mouse on Icons … Click > CRQ13 Black Wood
    • Click > MAT White V … Hover Mouse on Icons …
    • Click > PM961 Cream … Click > MAT WIDTH V 3” (Top Mat)
    • Click > ADD SECOND MAT (i.e., the Bottom Mat … next to Image)
    • Click > BOTTOM MAT White V … Click > PM3358 Indigo
    • Click > MAT WIDTH V 5”
    • Click > PAPER … Archival Matte Paper (Recommended)

Seem like a lot of steps? Actually, once you go through these steps a few times … it becomes really easy. Be sure to go back and forth to play with Top and Bottom Mat sizes and colors. Note: Mat color choices can vary with the style of Frame you choose.

In case you are wondering what our Image looks like with the Top and Bottom Mats we chose in the tutorial above … here it is for your review:

Top-Bottom Mats

Note: We will go into a few more advanced steps in Chapters 5 – 6 – 7 & 9 in the use of the Color-Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone tools.

What are Color Patches?

Not all image categories will have color patches for you to use. When you do have the Color Patches option … you may also have access to the Color Wheel / Shade-Tint-Tone Box  (Note: not all categories have these two options together (i.e., this is NOT an option in Apparel category).

In order to find out if you have access to both the Color Patches and the Color-Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box options … you can move the Slider Bar all the way to the left … as shown below:

Image Bar - Left

THEN … Click > LEFT Mouse (anywhere inside the BACKGROUND COLOR box …

You should quickly populate your page with the Color Patches if you have access to the Color-Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box as shown below (then Click > Show More Colors):

Capture 4 - Mugs 72 Color Patches

Using border colors can be confusing unless you know a few differences. You do not have to know color theory in order to use the color options on FAA, but you should know that:

    • Primary Color patches in the Natural world for house paints (are based on Red, Blue, and Yellow).
    • Primary Color patches in the Science world of physics (are based on Red, Green, and Blue … as used for digitized computers use). We all use Red, Green, Blue colors for computer applications.
    • Common colors can be identified by hexadecimal codes (Hex Triplet) or RGB codes (i.e., Blue color hexadecimal code is #0000ff and RGB code is ( 0, 0, 255) …  and these are the codes that we can use with our Color Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box in FAA websites.
    • The FAA’s 72 color patches displayed above only contains 17 web safe colors … but I have not experienced any color problems on products when using them (i.e., not usually a concern anyway unless developing a website).

What is the Color Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box?

It looks like a rectangular box within a colored circle … and has a code box beneath it … like the figure shown below (Note: Color Blue with Hex Triplet [ #0000ff ] shown in code box:


Blue #0000ff

Color Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box Tutorial Steps (with Coffee Mug example): *

    1. Click >
    2. Click > Collections
    3. Click > Coffee Mugs – Card Games
    4. Click > Ambush Power Poker [Image with Ace of Heart]
    5. Click > Coffee Mugs $17 V
    6. Click > Coffee Mug $17
    7. Click > Size (11 oz.) V
    8. Click > Large (15 oz.)
    9. Click & depress Left Mouse Hand pointer  button>  IMAGE SIZE Bar
    10. Slide Hand pointer > Left & Right (to resize image as desired)
    11. Click > inside BACKGROUND COLOR box (to reveal color patches)
    12. Hover > over color patches to activate the mouse pointer (i.e., Hand pointer )
    13. Click > Pink 5 (#82004c) [select it … or continue to Color Wheel]
    14. Click > Show More Colors (to get the Color-Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box)
    15. Note: The Pink 5 Code #82004c is already waiting in the Shade-Tint-Tone Box
    16. Click > anywhere on Color Wheel ONLY … watch coffee mug color change
    17. Click > inside middle of Shade box ONLY … watch coffee mug colors
    18. Click > ADD TO CART … when satisfied with product changes.

*Basic information for color management and selection … continue chapters for more advanced information and techniques on using the Color-Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box.

Most of us need help to make color choices: ranging from definitely … to maybe … to absolutely not. FAA artists are great at providing wonderful images for us … but they cannot possibly show us all the available color combinations (millions of choices).

However, one of the great things about Fine Art America is that they provide visitors with the tools they need to find and view all the combinations that the artist cannot possibly show us.

Once visitors learn how to use the tools … they can spend hours exciting themselves with possible combinations that can match just about any environment where we want to use our product choices.

Here are a couple of excellent links … loaded with useful color information … that can help us to decide what we think looks best on our product: *

    1. List of colors ( [about 750 colors]
    • Examples (color codes); Gradient generator; Color blender; 216 web safe colors; Colors by name.
    • Color information, Conversion, Color Schemes, Alternatives, Previews, Shades and Tints, Tones, Blindness Simulator.
    • Color Schemes with each color, to include: Complementary Color,
      Analogous Color, Split Complementary Color, Triadic Color, Tetradic Color, Monochromatic Color.
    • Color Meanings; Symbolism; Graphic Design; Interior Design; Art & Painting; Spirituality; Nature; Explore.

*If you will take your time to explore those two links above … there is not much you cannot do with the Color Wheel + Shade-Tint-Tone Box … but here is a link to learn more about color theory (

How can you get the book?  Once again … here is the information: [$4.97]   eBook [$11.97]   Print Book


The print book is also very good … and many people prefer to have a print book in addition to an eBook.

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