Discussion: Improvements to the Colour Wheel and Solid Colours

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As a result of discussions with developers like Jon Cruz (Inkscape, Viaduct) or Olivier Berten (Swatchbooker), I created this page as a place for discussing new colour features that are unrelated to colour management, especially the creative tools we already have and those that we may want to add in the future.

I'll start with some random thoughts, and once we have enough material collected, we can give it more structure.

I think some of these features are something for subik to tinker with ;) --C schaefer 23:03, 19 November 2010 (UTC)


  • When finished, Scribus should support the new universal swatch format from the Create Project.

The Eye Dropper

  • The Eye Dropper should be able to pick the "real" colour of an item (i.e. not just pick the RGB screen colour as it does now).

The Colour Wheel

  • If a colour palette has been loaded (especially a spot colour palette), there should be an option to find the closest spot colour in the chosen colour harmony scheme, based on RGB/CMYK/L*a*b values.
  • This project may also require enhancements to the Image Effects dialog (for Duotone/Tritone/Quadtone effects).
  • Support for more colour models (probably requires some work on internals).
  • More view modes for colour harmonies would be great.
  • An option to create a gradient from a colour harmony.
  • It should also be possible to determine the closest spot colours (in all available colour sets) to a given user-defined or imported colour.
  • It would be great to let Scribus determine the closest matching (spot) colours in two different colour systems (e.g., determine the RAL Classic colour that's closest to US Standard x).
  • To add more complexity, it should also be possible to determine aequivalents between colour sets in different colour spaces.
    • Since some of the features above would be most useful with access to some restricted colour systems like Pantone, NCS et al. and Scribus cannot ship these systems (at least for the time being), it may be worthwhile adding access to online databases similar to Swatchbooker. The colours would then be stored in an internal database on the user side, i.e. the user himself would be creating the database. Scribus would, by default, only use the colour sets it is shipped with in the database.

The Colour/Paint Manager

  • At some point, the Colour Manager (1.3.x/1.4) or Paint Manager (1.5svn) should be replaced with a real resource manager using Viaduct.
  • Make the dialog non-modal.
  • It would be great if we could add metadata, like copyrights or hints on usage, to the dialog!

Colours in Dialogs (e.g. Properties Palette)

  • It should be easier to access the Colour/Paint Manager/Viaduct from colour dialogs:
    • PP > Colours
    • PP > Text
    • Image Effects
    • Colour Wheel
    • Barcode Generator
    • Style Manager
    • Story Editor

Colours in the Document Setup/Preferences

  • It should be discussed whether or not and to what degree colour/gradient/resource should become part of DocSetup/Preferences. One reasonable enhancement to these dialogs may be the setting of additional paths to directories that contain colours, gradients etc.


  • What about a Munsell Colour Picker?
  • What about support of the SVG colour notation, i.e. one colour can have multiple instances, based on colour profiles/spaces?