I have just started designing print templates like brochures and business cards for graphic marketplaces.

As different users has different color requirements for their brand the files must easy to customize the colors. I currently guide the users to manually change the colors of the shapes individually and it somewhat works, but there might be easier way to do that.

I have heard of color swatches in Photoshop, but never tried it. Can I get a hint on using it in commercial products efficiently to achieve that or if there's any other much better technique then it would be great.

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1 Answer 1


Photoshop has swatches, but they don't work in the same way that they do in Illustrator or InDesign. If you adjust the color of a swatch in Ai or Id, any objects that use that swatch will also change color. That's because the internal object models used by these programs recognize objects with properties, and one of those properties is color, either randomly set or associated with an actual swatch.

Photoshop doesn't have objects in the sense that these other programs do. It "thinks" in layers. If you paint ten colors on a layer, it's still one layer. The individual bits of color aren't selectable. In the same way, the colors you fill a vector shape with don't link with the Swatches panel, even if you selected it from the available swatches. You can't edit a swatch, either, other than to rename it or delete it; you can only make it the foreground or background color and modify that.

If these were Illustrator or InDesign templates, this would be fairly simple, but in Photoshop you have to change colors of the individual shapes one at a time.

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