I'm trying to choose a discrete set of 10+ "cold" to "hot" colors to be used by translucent markers/icons displayed over a continuous tone grey scale image where each step is clearly different it's the neighbors. (i.e. not just some smooth gradient.)
Being perceived as "cold" to "hot" is not as important as each level being distinct from the next.
Some of the more naive choices have at least some colors that differ mostly in "brightness" (?). This can cause confusion when the markers from these colors blend with the underlying grey values.
Is there a known palette (or method to generate a palette) to use where no matter how the colors blend with the grey values, each bin remains clearly distinguishable from all others?
For an example of usage:
- Base image is a black/white image representing the relative landscape elevation for an area of rough and knotty terrain.
- Translucent marker icons would be indicating a spot measurement of temperature or gas density.
- Markers are colored according to bins of value over the actual range. e.g. If the captured values are 10 to 100 degrees across all markers, the colors would be: 10-19 degrees is blue, 20-29 degrees is green, [...], 100+ degrees is red)
- Markers are not opaque, since the underlying image features needs to be visible through them.
The question is how to select a good ~10 colors for the translucent markers such that they remain distinguishable no matter the underlying grey value.
Seems like the sort of thing that would be known in the data visualization field, but my Google skills are failing me here.