Choosing colors for your charts with RColorBrewer

December 9, 2010

(This article was first published on Revolutions, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

If you're creating a bar chart in R, how do you decide what colors the bars should be? Or if you're creating an image plot, what range of images should you use? The colors you choose can not only affect the viewer's interpretation of the graphic, it can also determine its aesthetic appeal, too.

That's where the RColorBrewer package comes in: it helps you choose a selection of visually distinct (as for bar charts) or a continuously varying (as for image plots) range of colors to make your charts more meaningful and more appealing. Stewaer MacArthur of CompBiomeBlog demonstrates (with working R code) how to use RCodeBrewer to generate color scales like this:


and use them in your R charts. 

compBiomeBlog: R: Using RColorBrewer to colour your figures in R

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