Scientific Journal and Sci-Fi Themed
Color Palettes for ggplot2

Nan Xiao <https://nanx.me>
Miaozhu Li <http://miaozhu.li>

2017-09-30

1 Introduction

My eyes were finally opened and I understood nature.

I learned at the same time to love it.

— Claude Monet

ggsci offers a collection of high-quality color palettes inspired by colors used in scientific journals, data visualization libraries, science fiction movies, and TV shows. The color palettes in ggsci are available as ggplot2 scales. For all the color palettes, the corresponding scales are named as:

We also provided aliases, such as scale_colour_palname() for scale_color_palname(). All available color palettes are summarized in the table below.

Name Scales Palette Types Palette Generator

NPG

scale_color_npg() scale_fill_npg()

"nrc"

pal_npg()

AAAS

scale_color_aaas() scale_fill_aaas()

"default"

pal_aaas()

NEJM

scale_color_nejm() scale_fill_nejm()

"default"

pal_nejm()

Lancet

scale_color_lancet() scale_fill_lancet()

"lanonc"

pal_lancet()

JAMA

scale_color_jama() scale_fill_jama()

"default"

pal_jama()

JCO

scale_color_jco() scale_fill_jco()

"default"

pal_jco()

UCSCGB

scale_color_ucscgb() scale_fill_ucscgb()

"default"

pal_ucscgb()

D3

scale_color_d3()
scale_fill_d3()

"category10" "category20" "category20b" "category20c"

pal_d3()

LocusZoom

scale_color_locuszoom() scale_fill_locuszoom()

"default"

pal_locuszoom()

IGV

scale_color_igv() scale_fill_igv()

"default"
"alternating"

pal_igv()

UChicago

scale_color_uchicago() scale_fill_uchicago()

"default"
"light"
"dark"

pal_uchicago()

Star Trek

scale_color_startrek() scale_fill_startrek()

"uniform"

pal_startrek()

Tron Legacy

scale_color_tron() scale_fill_tron()

"legacy"

pal_tron()

Futurama

scale_color_futurama() scale_fill_futurama()

"planetexpress"

pal_futurama()

Rick and Morty

scale_color_rickandmorty() scale_fill_rickandmorty()

"schwifty"

pal_rickandmorty()

The Simpsons

scale_color_simpsons() scale_fill_simpsons()

"springfield"

pal_simpsons()

GSEA

scale_color_gsea() scale_fill_gsea()

"default"

pal_gsea()

Material Design

scale_color_material() scale_fill_material()

"red" "pink"
"purple" "deep-purple"
"indigo" "blue"
"light-blue" "cyan"
"teal" "green"
"light-green" "lime"
"yellow" "amber"
"orange" "deep-orange"
"brown" "grey"
"blue-grey"

pal_material()

2 Discrete Color Palettes

We will use scatterplots with smooth curves, and bar plots to demonstrate the discrete color palettes in ggsci.

library("ggsci")
library("ggplot2")
library("gridExtra")

data("diamonds")

p1 = ggplot(subset(diamonds, carat >= 2.2),
       aes(x = table, y = price, colour = cut)) +
  geom_point(alpha = 0.7) +
  geom_smooth(method = "loess", alpha = 0.05, size = 1, span = 1) +
  theme_bw()

p2 = ggplot(subset(diamonds, carat > 2.2 & depth > 55 & depth < 70),
       aes(x = depth, fill = cut)) +
  geom_histogram(colour = "black", binwidth = 1, position = "dodge") +
  theme_bw()

2.1 NPG

The NPG palette is inspired by the plots in the journals published by Nature Publishing Group:

p1_npg = p1 + scale_color_npg()
p2_npg = p2 + scale_fill_npg()
grid.arrange(p1_npg, p2_npg, ncol = 2)

2.2 AAAS

The AAAS palette is inspired by the plots in the journals published by American Association for the Advancement of Science:

p1_aaas = p1 + scale_color_aaas()
p2_aaas = p2 + scale_fill_aaas()
grid.arrange(p1_aaas, p2_aaas, ncol = 2)

2.3 NEJM

The NEJM palette is inspired by the plots in The New England Journal of Medicine:

p1_nejm = p1 + scale_color_nejm()
p2_nejm = p2 + scale_fill_nejm()
grid.arrange(p1_nejm, p2_nejm, ncol = 2)

2.4 Lancet

The Lancet palette is inspired by the plots in Lancet journals, such as Lancet Oncology:

p1_lancet = p1 + scale_color_lancet()
p2_lancet = p2 + scale_fill_lancet()
grid.arrange(p1_lancet, p2_lancet, ncol = 2)

2.5 JAMA

The JAMA palette is inspired by the plots in The Journal of the American Medical Association:

p1_jama = p1 + scale_color_jama()
p2_jama = p2 + scale_fill_jama()
grid.arrange(p1_jama, p2_jama, ncol = 2)