Color is one of the most powerful elements of Art & Design; it captures our attention, has symbolic and emotional meaning, can create the illusion of depth and so much more. Color is also one of the most challenging elements to use properly. Beginnings tend to use as much color as possible, which can ruin an otherwise interesting concept or design. For hundreds of years, scientists and artists have been studying both the technical and aesthetic aspects of color and light. As artists, all we have to do is listen, and apply their theories to make our work more visually united and powerful!

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Color BasicsScreen Shot 2015-01-25 at 1.18.35 PM.png
Primary Colors: Red, yellow and blue
In traditional color theory (used in paint and pigments), primary colors are the 3 pigment colors that can not be mixed or formed by any combination of other colors.
All other colors are derived from these 3 hues.

Secondary Colors: Green, orange and purple
These are the colors formed by mixing the primary colors.

Tertiary Colors: Yellow-orange, red-orange, red-purple, blue-purple, blue-green & yellow-green
These are the colors formed by mixing a primary and a secondary color.
That's why the hue is a two-word name, such as blue-green, red-violet, and yellow-orange.

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Color Harmonies

Monochromatic: Using only one color, but every value of that one color

Complimentary: Using any two colors that are directly opposite from each other on the color wheel.

Analogous Colors: Any three colors which are side by side on a color wheel

Split complimentary:
One color plus the two colors on either side of its compliment

Triad: Any three colors which are of equal distance from each other.

Tetrads: Two pairs of complimentary colors

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Drag the image below to your desktop for help in choosing colors!