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Random Color Generator

, 15 Sep 2011 CPOL
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I wanted to create a random color generator.

The initial application was a plot color attribution for a graphic control.

I wanted to be able to put some weight to some color to ensure to stay away from them (like the background color). I haven’t found anything that does that. I decided to code it myself.


  • Never the same color twice
  • Each new color should be easily distinguishable from any previous one
  • Be able to set inital colors to reject
  • Be able to add a distance factor to any inital colors to reject in order to stay very far from them

The Solution

I started from the excellent code found here on code project from  Guillaume Leparmentier:

In fact, it was so good that I kept 99.9% of it and mainly just added 2 others classes (plus a Form to test).

I only added/modify:

  • I changed Color class used from WinForm (System.Drawing) to WPF (System.Windows.Media)
  • I added Distance calculation in CIELab.cs
  • I added a helper function GetColorDistanceCIELab in ColorSpaceHelper class
  • I added ColorGenerator, ColorRatio class and FormTestColorGenerator.

The class is based on random color generation with auto adjustable distance tolerance. High distance tolerance at start but decrease while adding new colors.

The code references Framework.Net 4.0 (and WPF) and the project is VS2010.



The main usage is defined in the header comments of ColorGenerator class

Comments copy:

// Main usage:
    ColorGenerator colorGenerator = new ColorGenerator();
    // Faster, little bit more color with less distance 
    colorGenerator.Speed = 50; 
    // My background, 4 to stay far away 
    colorGenerator.UsedColors.Add(new ColorGenerator.ColorRatio(System.Windows.Media.Colors.Black, 4)); 
    // No White
    colorGenerator.UsedColors.Add(new ColorGenerator.ColorRatio(System.Windows.Media.Colors.White, 1.2)); 
    // Grid Color
    colorGenerator.UsedColors.Add(new ColorGenerator.ColorRatio(System.Windows.Media.Colors.LightGray, 1)); 
    System.Windows.Media.Color c = colorGenerator.GetNextColor();


Hope it helps some


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

Eric Ouellet
Software Developer
Canada Canada

I'm a Canadian-french developer for many years now.
I'm actually programming in C# but I also had some fun in the past with: VB, C++, SQL, Java, etc.
I like to play games like Carcassone, Settlers of Catane, Chess, Poker...
I also like photography.


Comments and Discussions

Discussions posted for the Published version of this article. Posting a message here will take you to the publicly available article in order to continue your conversation in public.
GeneralMy vote of 5 Pinmemberconmajia19-Jul-12 4:49 
GeneralRe: My vote of 5 PinmemberEric Ouellet19-Jul-12 4:54 
GeneralRe: Oh yes ! I just uncomment the lines in ColorGenerator to hav... Pinmemberherves29-Sep-11 23:26 
GeneralReason for my vote of 4 nice Pinmemberkiran dangar4-Oct-11 20:11 
GeneralJust what i need today (for a EPG program)!. Thanks Pinmemberherves29-Sep-11 6:42 
GeneralRe: I'm happy to know. I hope it will be as expected ! PinmemberEric Ouellet29-Sep-11 7:10 
GeneralReason for my vote of 5 nice, why didn't you make it a short... Pinmemberjohannesnestler21-Sep-11 5:28 
GeneralRe: Thanks a lot. I didn't write an article because I thought th... PinmemberEric Ouellet21-Sep-11 6:27 
GeneralReason for my vote of 4 Interesting... Must admit the first... PinmemberBrianBissell20-Sep-11 4:16 
GeneralRe: Thanks for your vote ! I agree the picture is a kind of hook... PinmemberEric Ouellet20-Sep-11 4:30 

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