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Author Topic: Tips for colorizing a custom kite?  (Read 2090 times)
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timothymcmackin
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« on: October 19, 2011, 05:02 AM »

Hi, all. I've been saving up for two new kites, and I thought it would be fun to get custom sails for them rather than buy them off the rack. However, I'm not much of a graphic designer, and I've never ordered a custom kite before. Do you have any tips for (A) working out a color scheme that looks good and (B) figuring out what the kite will look like in real life before you order it?

For example, the colors on the screen don't translate well to colors in the real world. There's a huge difference between the bold, bright red on colorizers and the more muted red on my Rev B mid-vent. A friend also pointed out that many colorizers have black lines separating the panels, while the real kite will have only stitching to separate the panels -- probably not enough of a border to be visible. Thus, putting panels of the same color next to each other could be a problem because they might all meld together into a blob.

I want to complete my Rev B-series collection with a full vent. This will be flown only occasionally, because I don't get strong winds often, so it may spend more time on the wall than in the air. I wanted something simple and elegant to match the relaxed nature of the kite. I like green, so I've been working with an asymmetrical green-yellow pattern. Here are a few sketches:
http://yfrog.com/189xtg

I also want a Talon standard, and I feel like this agile, tricky kite should be red, or some other bold combination of colors. However, red is really difficult to work with because I don't want a lot of black on the kite (I like bright colors on kites), and the other shades of red are hard to contrast with because they are very close to each other on the screen. Instead, I've been playing with blues and oranges but I don't have anything I really like yet:
http://yfrog.com/nut7eg

Any tips or opinions? Thanks!
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Flying Fish
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« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2011, 06:22 AM »

The one thing about colourisers is that it will cost you time, LOTS of it! I don't know how much time I spent agonising over the colours of my Talon and Deep Space .... For the Talon, I suggest that you start with one of the designs that's already on Mark's page and work from that. Not having a boundary between the different sail sections can also be an advantage, depending on what you're aiming for. I wanted my DS to look different from the majority of DSs out there, so being able to merge different sail sections by giving them the same colour worked for me (and Tim liked the end result, so he built it!).

And you are right in saying that the colours on a screen are not always the same as the icarex on your kite. Tim was kind enough to send me a few scraps of colours I was doubting between, so I could make sure the kite was really what I wanted.

In the end, you fly the kite and whatever appeals to you at the end of your lines is what you should go for. So play around, play some more, play yet more ....
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Krijn
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« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2011, 08:22 AM »

i don't think other people can help you a lot with colorizering

some tips:
 - just take your time, make some screenshots and take a look at them a few hours (or days!) later
 - starting with designs you like does help a lot, go from there
 - symmetrical or not?
 - maybe you want some room for coming models of the same kite (that was very hard for me when i ordered my first talon, i knew others were probably coming)

i like red with white, light-grey and maybe dark-grey and/or black

or red and slate (between grey and blue)! nice colour, but not on your computerscreen...
example:

good luck!
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Craig
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« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2011, 08:25 AM »

Black, grey, white and 1 main colour, stray from that simple formula and prepare to be ridiculed!
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thief
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« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2011, 08:49 AM »

i like the idea of coming up with the top three of your choice and then going for public opinion!
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Jest_of_Eve
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« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2011, 01:35 PM »

I always say high contrasting colors are the best, a light panel next to a really dark panel.

Also, on lighter looking kites, the overlap plus stitcing can actually produce quite a dark-looking seperation between panels, at least in my observations of customer photos (or Chilese photos  Grin)
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mikenchico
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« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2011, 09:00 PM »

My tip for colorizers, step away, tell the maker/artist to send you something nice.

Huge time suck and when I look at it the next day I blame it on "I must've been really tired" ... LOL

« Last Edit: October 19, 2011, 09:10 PM by mikenchico » Logged

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DWayne
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« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2011, 06:50 PM »

The first one was really agonizing for me. They do get easier after the first one. Just stay with it, you'll find something you like.  Wink

Denny
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tpatter
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« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2011, 07:56 PM »

All white for the SUL, grey for the UL, jet black for the Standard, red for the vented.  If you are a contrarian, go black for SUL and white for standard.

Just kidding, it is tough.  Lucky for me, lams kites have no panels!  Smiley
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madhabitz
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« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2011, 11:33 PM »

I agree with everyone, but Denny nailed it: agonizing. My big worry was the same as yours-- the colors weren't going to be as saturated as what I could see on my monitor. I knew it, but came up with a load of ideas. It was so hard to choose. I knew the purples would likely be pretty good, as would the grays (needed one more value), probably the blues and the greens and yellows. The red, though.... so much of what I liked needed that deeply saturated red.

My best advice at this point is to pick one idea you like and then another you like. Decide which of the two you like the best. Discard the loser. Then compare another sample with the winner. Choose which one you like best. Discard the loser. Repeat. Ad infinitum.

The colorizer is evil. In the end, the joke was on me. I went with a black/white sail with red wingtips. lol

Here's a link to my process:
http://www.madhabitz.com/gallery/BMK-Mamba-Choices

Have fun!!
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Allen Carter
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« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2011, 07:43 AM »

Lots of good advice, but I'll add a bit more.

Just because it's a custom doesn't mean it has to be unique. If you see a kite you like, go for it. Seeing a kite in person or in photos makes all the difference. Much higher percentage of satisfaction. Some kites have a seemingly endless variety of color and layout combinations that work. Some are much more limited. Mamba vs DeepSpace for example.

The other thing I've done is take a layout I like and do it in my colors
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Allen, AKA kitehead
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« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2011, 10:57 PM »

I went thru tthe same thing-I found Mark @ JOE to be a tremendous resource and very patient! If you are getting a Talon I second the idea of starting with one of mark's designs/color schemes and then working from there.
Best of luck!
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timothymcmackin
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« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2011, 06:25 AM »

Thanks for the tips, everyone! There are several good suggestions in there for how to approach the design task.

I've been fiddling with Talon colors a little more and here's what I've been trying now: I came up with a basic pattern that looks more like a finished design than anything else I've made. I like it because there's contrast between the panels (lights next to darks) and yet to my eye it looks almost like a whole instead of a patchwork. Now I'm applying different colors to the same basic pattern to see what might look good. I haven't come up with a red kite that I like (the red, rubin, and wine still look too similar on screen -- they blend together instead of complementing), but I've got some green-based patterns that might be nice, plus a few green-mango combinations that are really eye-catching. Hey, if I'm going to be getting a custom, top-of-the-line kite, it might as well be bold, right?  Smiley

http://yfrog.com/nye8dg

A1 is the original pattern that started to look like a real kite to me. Any opinions or votes?
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chilese
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« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2011, 11:51 AM »

1 For maximum contrast, you would need to use both black and white.

2 Except for your yellow highlighted designs, any of the color choices will appear a bit on the drab side until they are backlit, then they will look very good.

3 Personally, I prefer not to use blue as there is less contrast with the blue sky. That is just my opinion. Mr. Clemens, who is Jest of Eve, loves blue in kites. To each his own.

4 Despite what our votes say, you will be looking at the kite. So choose a design you like the most.

5 In any color combination, a Talon will still be a wonderful kite. I fly fidelio's Talon UL every chance I get.  Smiley
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John Chilese: Las Vegas, NV
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Krijn
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« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2011, 01:17 PM »

for what it is worth:

i like A1 and A5 most

 Cheesy
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