Monday, May 6, 2013

Gentleman Color Theory

Color Theory

Knowing color theory is important to give direction and focus to your compositions. There are three elements you must know to create color harmony. If there is no harmony, then one or more of these is out of whack.
  • Hue - The name of the color. (Red, Yellow Blue, etc.)
  • Value - The light or darkness of a color. (Dark Red, LIght Red, etc)
  • Intensity - Level of brightness or darkness of a color. The amount of light reflected or transmitted


Red, yellow and blue are the  primary colors for ink/pigment and red, green and blue are the primary colors for light. A primary color cannot be made from any other color.

Secondary colors are made form a combination of two primary colors.

Tertiary colors are made from a combination of three colors being primary or secondary

Color Descriptions
Saturation - The level of white, black or gray, ranging from neutral to brilliant.

Warm colors comes forward and cool colors recede.
Warm -Yellows, oranges, and reds.
Cool - Greens, blues, and violets.

Tint – Base color plus white.
Tone – Base color plus grey.
Shade – Base color plus black.

These are the basics you need to know to start making sense of color and to begin a  more thorough study of color theory.

That completes our brief look at composition and color theory.

Now, I also took a detour when I began discussing visual vocabulary, so I will get back to that.

BONUS LINKS for detailed information on Color Theory!

Basic Color Theory

Basic color schemes - Introduction to Color Theory

How to Master Color Theory

The fundamentals of understanding color theory

to be continued…

read next - Visual Vocabulary of Graphic Novels and Comic Books
previous - Dark and Light

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Remember… Just Create!

If you are interested in further expanding your knowledge, then I recommend these books.

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Copyright 2016 H. Simpson

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