New Mexico Color Southwest Color Palettes to show locality

  While driving, our creative director noticed that two businesses right next to each other had the same color signs.  Yellow background with red text.   Immediately, we know that this color scheme is trying to imply locality.  Red and yellow are the same colors used for our state flag.  The problem was though, the businesses couldn’t have been any more different.  One was a salon and the other a tax company.   The common factor was that they were presenting themselves with NM pride.  This observation prompted an interesting and thoughtful dialogue in the office. 

Being located from the southwest, we have been asked numerous times to localize brands, and you know what that means… Bright red and the yellowist yellow. It’s EVERYWHERE.  We mean no offense, it’s a tried and true color staple, especially for road signs paid for by the state. But should a company’s signage and promotional graphics be the same color as a license plate?

As designers, we have to gain inspiration through our everyday life. So we wanted to make a couple of palettes that can inspire NM locality in a unique way. 

Because our designers are trained to think differently, we wanted to highlight how to showcase pride and locality, without looking like everyone else.  Be challenged and inspired by the natural colors of our great state!  

Cacti are beautiful, and quite colorful too! Shades of green, hues of blue, pink, and yellow!  

Turquoise is a staple out here in the Southwest, with its variation in color, this palette can be soft.  Try a bolder style with copper hues complimenting the Turquoise. 

Sunrise and Sunsets. Is there anything more unique? With every color under the rainbow to choose from, it’s quite the task to choose only a few. Thanks to the amazing photos from the photographers at  we have created a soothing palette to get you inspired.   The variety is endless, choose purples, navy, orange, and fuschia tones.  

 Food is always motivating, the bright limes and spices compliment all the meaty goodness. Perhaps this one won’t so much inspire design, as much as it will make you hungry for lunch, it’s 12 right?


We have created a flexible spectrum to use with each palette.  For modern design, pick 2-3 complimentary colors that would work best.

Now, Imagine if that tax company had used a couple of hues from the sunset palette, and the salon used colors from the turquoise palette!   Locality with variety!  


Enjoy these color palettes and get creative.