With a tap of a button, you can change the color of your Philips Hue lights. While the Hue app comes with a few color presets built-in, you can also create your own custom scenes from your own photos.

RELATED: How to Set Up Your Philips Hue Lights

If you’ve been using Hue lights since the old “Gen 1” app, then this feature will look familiar. You can choose a picture from your camera roll and use it as a template for the color of your Hue lights. So, for example, if you take a picture of a particularly gorgeous sunset and want to capture that unique shade of orange/purple, you can use that photo to set your Hue lights.

To get started, open the app and tap the name of the light whose color you want to change. Be sure to tap the name itself, and not the round icon, as that will pull up a color picker.

On this screen, turn your light on if it isn’t already. Then, tap the Scenes tab.


On the Scenes tab, tap the Plus icon at the bottom of the screen, then choose “Picture scene.”


Next, choose a picture from your camera roll. Hue will take an average of the colors in your picture, so pick one that either is all one color scheme, or has a large section that’s the color you want.

For my example, I wanted to use the blue of this stage curtain I took a picture of. You can pan and zoom your picture to feature just a portion of the image, and the Hue app will update as you do. Once I narrow the picture down to just the curtain, I get a nice soft blue. You can also adjust the brightness of the light along the bottom. When you’re done tweaking the image, tap Save.

Give your scene a name and you’re done.

Once you’ve saved your preset, you can find it again in your list of Scenes later and apply it whenever you want.

You’ll find all your custom scenes at the bottom of your Scenes list. You can always adjust the brightness if you need to, but Hue will remember the color you chose from your picture.

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Eric Ravenscraft has nearly a decade of writing experience in the technology industry. His work has also appeared in The New York Times, PCMag, The Daily Beast, Popular Science, Medium's OneZero, Android Police, Geek and Sundry, and The Inventory. Prior to joining How-To Geek, Eric spent three years working at Lifehacker.
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