Somehow, I inherited this project that comes with a logo, the CEO already has business cards printed with that logo on it, and as far as I'm concerned, the colors and design are non-negotiable anymore.

So far, so good.

The tricky part is that I'll be working around that logo: web site, t-shirts, marketing collateral, etc. The logo consists of three letters in a space age font, and it's simply attractive, because the previous designer (?) used a blue gradient:

dark blue
not so dark blue
even not that dark blue
lighter blue
light blue
glaring blue
light blue
lighter blue
even not that dark blue
not so dark blue
dark blue

And although I could sort of eye-ball the middle of the road blue that was used to produce the logo, I was wondering whether there is a better method for finding the base value of the blue gradient.

Any ideas?

  • Does the "middle of the road blue" appear in the logo? I don't see it in your amusing list. If it does, you can eyedropper it in Photoshop and match it to whatever color system or CMYK percentages you like. May 4, 2012 at 20:18

1 Answer 1


A gradient is simply a transition between two or more colors along a line. There is no "base value" or color. That said, I do understand your question, and I think you've already found the best answer; just eyeball what looks best for your medium (digitial, print, etc.) and use that. Once you've settled on a base color, then make sure you record it somewhere (like in a branding guide) and use it consistently.

Note: If you have the source file for the logo, and the gradient is a composite of several layers then it might be possible to pull out a base color of sorts. For examply I often do this in Photoshop:

Composite gradient in Photoshop

  • I should clarify, that when I say eye-ball the color I mean pick whatever looks best out of the gradient with an eyedropper tool. In case that wasn't obious ;)
    – hamstu
    May 4, 2012 at 20:39
  • Hey, thank you so much for your answer. Yes, I get the eye-ball with the eye-dropper reference, hahahahaha. Thank you very much. It's just good to know sometimes that I'm not the one who didn't get the memo -- it helps to know that others recommend the same approach.
    – Ace
    May 4, 2012 at 21:37

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