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k_au

Every color swatch should be a "global color"

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When I replied to this, I thought a bit more about the way color swatches work atm.

I just don't think there is a need for a color swatch that is not "connected" to the objects that are using it. If I change a color swatch, I want to change all the objects that use it.

InDesign does it this way, and it makes sense. I know that Illustrator does have "unconnected" swatches as well as "global" swatches -- but I never understood the reason for that. If there's a use case for "non-connected" swatches, please let me know :)  I believe any such use should still be possible with "connected" swatches only. So all the swatches should behave as if they were a "global swatch". Or do "global swatches" have additional features that I haven't found out yet?

 

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If you are using a theme throughout a project it should be global.

But what if you want to change one or two items that currently have a "connected" color ,it would mean the rest would change too,doesn't it.

So no always global for me.


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Definitely "global" as a choice (and not the default). It is good to have a controlled view of all colors used in objects, whether assigned globally or "locally". In some projects (typically bitmap based) there is often no need for either (you just use colors without needing to control their exact color values), while in a page layout program the typical use is to have all swatches global (like in InDesign). But the Illustrator way is very useful especially in an environment where you can switch between working spaces.

As Publisher has separate buttons for adding a color as a local or global swatch, it is easy to decide which option to use. It is just pity that a global swatch gets a generic name instead of a name based on the color definition (which can be worked around by first creating a local swatch and then converting it to global one by using the context menu).

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17 hours ago, haakoo said:

what if you want to change one or two items that currently have a "connected" color ,it would mean the rest would change too,doesn't it.

No, that would only be the case with symbols.  Otherwise, to change those one or two items you would select those items and assign a different swatch (or use the colors panel which would not involve the use of a swatch).

 

1 hour ago, Lagarto said:

As Publisher has separate buttons for adding a color as a local or global swatch, it is easy to decide which option to use.

Bingo.  I don't know where they are getting the idea that swatches are not already "global by default" as practically everywhere I've seen an option for creating a swatch for a document swatch palette, both options were there and just as accessible.

 

1 hour ago, Lagarto said:

It is just pity that a global swatch gets a generic name instead of a name based on the color definition

No, it is completely sensible because if they did get a name based on the color definition people would be complaining just as loudly that they do not update automatically when the color gets changed (and they are already doing so for non-global swatch entries).  It would be better to use generic names for all of the user-created swatch entries and display the actual color (pantone number or RGB/CMYK/whatever value) separately from the name but in the same list, so that the name can be user-provided but the color value always matches.

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3 minutes ago, fde101 said:

I don't know where they are getting the idea that swatches are not already "global by default" as practically everywhere I've seen an option for creating a swatch for a document swatch palette, both options were there and just as accessible.

I’m not sure who “they” are, but swatches are clearly not global by default. If they were, we wouldn’t need to choose an option (no matter how accessible) to make them global. ;)


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1 minute ago, Alfred said:

we wouldn’t need to choose an option (no matter how accessible) to make them global

How are you creating the swatches to begin with, that you don't have the choice to make them global at the time of creation?

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9 minutes ago, fde101 said:

How are you creating the swatches to begin with, that you don't have the choice to make them global at the time of creation?

But that’s my point: it’s a option instead of being the default. I’d rather have the option preselected so that I would only have to change it on the odd occasion when I didn’t want a new swatch to be global.


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8 minutes ago, Alfred said:

I’d rather have the option preselected

This is where I am lost.  Where is this an option to be selected?

For example, in the swatches panel, when a document palette is selected, I see two buttons right next to each other: clicking one makes a non-global color, and clicking the other makes a global color.  They are equally accessible and there is no additional work in choosing one over the other.

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2 minutes ago, fde101 said:

This is where I am lost.  Where is this an option to be selected?

For example, in the swatches panel, when a document palette is selected, I see two buttons right next to each other: clicking one makes a non-global color, and clicking the other makes a global color.  They are equally accessible and there is no additional work in choosing one over the other.

Thanks for that. Sorry to have been so obtuse earlier!

I think there must have been a preselected option somewhere, otherwise this issue would never have come up for discussion, but I’m afraid I don’t know offhand where that preselected option is presented to the user.


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I think the issue might partly come from the difference between document and application palettes. It's not quite intuitive that one kind of palette can have global colours and the other can't. Also, it's a hassle to make regular swatches global: I imported a palette that had regular swatches and had to turn every single one into "global" one by one. Would be nice if one could select more than one swatch and then use the right-click menu on all of them. 

 

On 7/3/2019 at 11:42 AM, Lagarto said:

It is good to have a controlled view of all colors used in objects, whether assigned globally or "locally".

I agree about the overview,  but still do not see the need for non-global swatches... :)

On 7/3/2019 at 11:42 AM, Lagarto said:

But the Illustrator way is very useful especially in an environment where you can switch between working spaces.

And as far as I know, newer versions of Illustrator make all new swatches global by default. You have to uncheck a box to make a "regular" swatch. 

On 7/3/2019 at 12:48 PM, fde101 said:

It would be better to use generic names for all of the user-created swatch entries and display the actual color (pantone number or RGB/CMYK/whatever value) separately from the name but in the same list, so that the name can be user-provided but the color value always matches.

Yes, that would be a very good thing! Right now, you can't tell with named swatches whether it's CMYK or RGB or.... 

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2 hours ago, k_au said:

I imported a palette that had regular swatches and had to turn every single one into "global" one by one. Would be nice if one could select more than one swatch and then use the right-click menu on all of them. 

This is a right chore! I’d like to see a feature that converts multiple colours in the palette AND in the document.

I did a series of illustrations in AD on iPad, I used the same set of colours for each on separate artboards. Now, if I wanted to tweak the colour palette on desktop, not only do I have to convert them one by one into global colours, but then I have to reselect the corresponding colour in every fill, stroke and gradient node of every symbol and element of every illustration.

Eeesh!

Imagine if, when you convert a swatch to global, you had the option of automatically linking every matching colour in the document to that global swatch.

 

...For now, I’ll just be careful not to get too ambitious with the iPad app before I’ve nailed down the colour palette.

 

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3 hours ago, spez said:

Imagine if, when you convert a swatch to global, you had the option of automatically linking every matching colour in the document to that global swatch.

Yes please

I've always used global and would prefer an option or a tick box in preferences to always have global by default - I still get caught out now and then by starting a job then get carried away only to discover I want the change the colour but forgot to create a global palate - also similar prob forgetting to click the tick boxes for scale stroke and layer FX

3 hours ago, spez said:

This is a right chore!

Yes Spez been there loads of times using Designer when all you did in Illustrator was click on a colour then go to select same colour fill / stroke which selects all the same colour throughout the document spanning hundreds of layers and nested layers then change to a new global swatch - 30second job - whereas in Designer maybe a couple of hours if your'e lucky - 


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1 hour ago, Dazmondo77 said:

select same colour fill / stroke which selects all the same colour throughout the document

Yeah, and of course this has been asked for more than once before: 

 

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22 hours ago, k_au said:

It's not quite intuitive that one kind of palette can have global colours and the other can't.

A document palette travels with the document, so if you have global colors in the document palette and someone opens it on another computer, those colors are still there and can be accessed.

An application (or system) palette is tied to the computer instead.  If the document were to be opened on another computer which does not have the exact same palette on it, the global colors would not be there for the document's objects/layers to refer to... or they might have a similar palette but with different colors associated with the swatches, in which case simply opening the document on a different computer might cause it to have a different color scheme for different people trying to look at it.

You could theoretically work around the travel issue to some degree for application palettes by storing a copy of the referenced colors inside the document when global colors from an application palette are used.  Then what happens when you use colors from that palette in two documents, change the assigned colors in one, and re-open the other document?

  • change the colors in the opened document change to match the settings in the palette (changing the appearance of the document simply by opening it)
  • update the palette to match the document (reverting the changes that were made for the other document - and what happens to the other one if it is also still open?)
  • redefine the colors in a new palette to maintain the appearance of the document without impacting the existing palette (if so, to a document palette, in which case they may as well have been on one to begin with, or to a new application palette, in which case you wind up with a bunch of duplicate palettes on your system?)
  • disassociate the objects with the global swatches and make them non-global, losing the benefits of having made them global colors in the first place

If you stop and think this through, you may begin to understand why global swatches are restricted to document palettes.  It is far more intuitive than trying to deal with the mess that would result from global swatches on application palettes...  :35_thinking:

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On 7/10/2019 at 3:51 PM, k_au said:

I agree about the overview,  but still do not see the need for non-global swatches... :)

One obvious reason is when you want a specific object to be isolated so that whatever the color you give it you know that if you change the color subsequently, the change does not have effect on any other object. In a complex drawing where objects are in layers, and often not all visible simultaneously it may be important to have these kinds of swatches. Yet you want all colors to be in swatches, rather than give ad hoc color definitions, and this way have more control of colors used in the document. Changing a local color swatch of course can leave another object that was previously colored with the same swatch "unlinked" with any swatch but that's ok if the point was in the firt place to have that object just colored with specific color without needing to tie the object's color with any global color scheme.

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On 7/3/2019 at 1:48 PM, fde101 said:

No, that would only be the case with symbols.  Otherwise, to change those one or two items you would select those items and assign a different swatch (or use the colors panel which would not involve the use of a swatch).

I am not sure what you mean by symbols (Designer symbols?), but changing of a global color does affect all objects that use the global color (= have e.g. a fill that has been assigned by clicking a global color swatch and that show that connection whenever the object is selected). That is the idea of a global swatch, not needing to select objects to change their color attributes (and also being able to create tints that all change when the parent color is changed). It is of course possible to have objects that use the same color but do not have global color swatch linked to them, and color of these kinds of objects would not change when a global color is changed.

Affinity Publisher (at least) does behave a bit oddly though as an object can still have a link to a global swatch even if its color deviates from the swatch's current definition (being based on earlier global definition of the same swatch, as shown in the "Recent" colors, from which an earlier instance can still be chosen as the color of an object). Such objects would not show the linked connection with a swatch but their color would still change when the color of a global swatch is changed -- this might be a bug, but if not, a bit hazardous feature.

 

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2 hours ago, Lagarto said:

Designer symbols

yep

 

2 hours ago, Lagarto said:

changing of a global color does affect all objects that use the global color

Correct, but going back to the original comment that I was commenting on, I interpreted the question to suggest that the color assigned to a limited number of specific objects was being changed, not that the swatch was being changed.

 

2 hours ago, Lagarto said:

an object can still have a link to a global swatch even if its color deviates from the swatch's current definition (being based on earlier global definition of the same swatch, as shown in the "Recent" colors, from which an earlier instance can still be chosen as the color of an object)

I haven't seen that behavior yet myself, but this does indeed sound like a bug.

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