Earlier this summer we hitched a ride on the train to Chicago for a few days to enjoy that beautiful city before it turns blustery and cold for 6 months. As usual when traveling, walking around the city made me think of how it could be branded – what colors and such could speak for an entire city.

snapshot of Chicago skyline, uploaded into iPhone app

I snapped this photo from the steps of Shedd Aquarium, right out on Lake Michigan. Then I opened this awesome app called Picture Palette.

The app acts as a color-picking tool. I tapped the red building on the left of the picture and the app picked out that color, called it Buccaneer, and gave me the webcode to recreate that exact color online. (A nice alternative when Kuler is down.)

Then it gave me several palettes using Buccaneer down at the bottom. Tapping the palette reveals the webcodes for each color in that scheme. What do you think about the palette called Similarities? Looks like Chicago to me.

If you aren’t working with webcodes, you can easily translate those numbers into RGB color codes (recognizable by Microsoft Office products) at a site like this.

So if I can find a color scheme that represents a whole city, you can find one that represents your project, your interviewees, your campus. Going to the effort of branding your research and evaluation projects is worthwhile because it communicates an integration between evaluator and client that is too often divided.