returns dominant colors in image.


returns at most n dominant colors in image.


returns the specified property prop for the regions that belong to the same dominant color.


returns the output in the specified format.


returns dominant colors in each imagei.

Details and Options

  • DominantColors[image] returns a list of colors that represent clusters of colors that appear in the image. The colors are represented by GrayLevel or RGBColor.
  • DominantColors works with arbitrary 2D and 3D images.
  • The returned colors are ordered based on the size of the clusters they represent.
  • DominantColors uses the LABColor to find color clusters.
  • The following properties can be used to return dominant colors in different forms:
  • "Color"color for each cluster given in RGB or grayscale (default)
    "HexRGBColor"RGB color in the hexadecimal form
    "LABColor"CIELAB color
    "NearestHTMLColor"name of the nearest HTML color
  • Other supported properties include:
  • "Count"total number of pixels covered by each cluster
    "Coverage"fraction of the whole image covered by each cluster
    "CoverageImage"image representing the region covered by each cluster
    "MaskCoverage"fraction of the specified mask covered by each cluster
  • DominantColors[image,n,{"prop1","prop2",}] computes multiple properties.
  • DominantColors[image,n,"Properties"] returns a list of supported properties.
  • The format argument specifies the output format. Possible settings are:
  • Automaticdetermine the output automatically
    "ColorAssociation"an association of coli{,valj,}
    "ColorPropertyAssociation"an association of coli<|,propjvalj,|>
    "Dataset"a Dataset of cluster properties
    "List"a nested list
    "PropertyAssociation"an association of propj{,vali,}
  • DominantColors accepts the following options:
  • ColorCoverage Automaticfraction of the image covered
    DistanceFunction Automaticany distance supported in ColorDistance
    Masking Allregion of interest
    Method Automaticthe method to use
    MinColorDistance Automaticminimum color distance
  • With MinColorDistance->d, clusters represented by colors c1 and c2 are merged if ColorDistance[c1,c2]<d. The color with the larger coverage is assigned to the new cluster.
  • With ColorCoverage->f, colors that cover less than a fraction f of the image are returned. With ColorCoverage->{fmin,fmax} a range of coverage fractions can be specified.
  • With Masking->roi, "CoverageImage" and "MaskCoverage" return properties with respect to the specified region of interest roi. »
  • Possible settings for Method include:
  • "KMeans"-means clustering algorithm
    "KMedoids"partitioning around medoids
    "MedianCut"recursively split the color space based on median pixel values
    "MinVariance"recursively split the color space so that the sum of variances in new subregions is minimal (Wu's algorithm)
    "Octree"create an octree from all image pixels and merge leaves until the most representative remain


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Basic Examples  (3)

Dominant colors in an image of a logo:

Dominant colors of a grayscale image:

Dominant colors of a 3D volume:

Scope  (12)

Basic Uses  (4)

Find dominant colors in an image:

Compute up to 5 dominant colors:

Compute different properties for each dominant color:

Compute the dominant colors of a list of images:

Properties  (6)

By default, dominant colors are returned as RGB colors:

Dominant colors represented in CIELAB space:

Return the dominant colors in their hexadecimal representation:

Find the closest HTML color name to each dominant color:

Compute the number of pixels covered by each dominant color:

Return coverage fraction and coverage mask:

Format  (2)

Specify a different output format:

Return an association of property values:

Options  (8)

ColorCoverage  (1)

By default, an automatic threshold is used for ColorCoverage:

Return all colors regardless of their coverage:

If no color covers the minimum coverage specified, an empty list is returned:

Specify a range for color coverage:

DistanceFunction  (1)

By default, the "CIE76" color distance is used to merge color clusters:

Use a different color distance:

Specify a custom distance function between CIELAB colors:

Masking  (2)

By default, dominant colors in the whole image are returned:

This is equivalent to the setting Masking->All:

Compute the dominant colors of the image foreground:

With Masking->All, "Coverage" and "MaskCoverage" are the same:

With a given mask, "MaskCoverage" returns the fraction of mask covered by each cluster:

Method  (2)

By default, DominantColors automatically picks the most suitable method to generate color clusters:

Use the Method option to choose a specific method:

Compare the timing and result of different methods:

MinColorDistance  (2)

By default, the minimum color distance is automatically chosen:

With MinColorDistance->d, clusters with color representatives closer than d are merged:

Use MinColorDistance->0 to avoid any color merging:

Avoid color merging by computing all dominant colors using MinColorDistance->0:

Delete similar colors using a custom function:

Applications  (4)

Extract colors of a flag:

Separate an image into the regions of its dominant colors:

Create a quantized version of an image:

Add more details by preventing any merger:

Segment cells of different colors:

Properties & Relations  (4)

Dominant colors are sorted based on their area coverage:

The alpha channel is taken into account in computing dominant colors:

Blend the partially transparent image with the background to get a result similar to the visual appearance of the image:

ColorQuantize represents the image with the existing color tones in an image:

Colors generated by DominantColors:

Replace pixels by the closest common color in the RGB color space:

Perform the color replacement in the CIELAB color space:

List of supported properties that can be computed for any dominant color:

Neat Examples  (1)

Use ArrayPlot to show the colors and their relative frequency in one plot:

Wolfram Research (2012), DominantColors, Wolfram Language function, (updated 2019).


Wolfram Research (2012), DominantColors, Wolfram Language function, (updated 2019).


Wolfram Language. 2012. "DominantColors." Wolfram Language & System Documentation Center. Wolfram Research. Last Modified 2019.


Wolfram Language. (2012). DominantColors. Wolfram Language & System Documentation Center. Retrieved from


@misc{reference.wolfram_2024_dominantcolors, author="Wolfram Research", title="{DominantColors}", year="2019", howpublished="\url{}", note=[Accessed: 17-July-2024 ]}


@online{reference.wolfram_2024_dominantcolors, organization={Wolfram Research}, title={DominantColors}, year={2019}, url={}, note=[Accessed: 17-July-2024 ]}