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Color Theory

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jonathan rogan

on 15 November 2017

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Transcript of Color Theory

Color Theory
Properties of Color
An element of art with three properties:
HUE- or tint, the color name, e.g., red, yellow, blue, crimson, ultramarine etc.
INTENSITY, the purity and strength of a color, e.g., bright red or dull red.
Value, the lightness and darkness of a color.

When the spectrum is organzed as a color wheel, the colors are divided into groups called primary, secondary, and intermediate/ tertiary; color schemes such as analogus and complementary, and also as warm and cool colors.
Primary Colors Red, Yellow, Blue
In traditional color theory, these 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, Violet
These are the colors formed by mixing equal parts of two primary colors.
Tertiary/Intermediate colors
Yellow-orange, red-orange, red-violet, blue-violet, blue-green and yellow-green.

These are the colors formed by mixing a primary and a secondary color. Most colors mixed while painting are considered tertiary colors
Tints, Shades & Tones
if a color is made lighter by adding white, the result is called a TINT. If black is added, the darker version is called a SHADE. If gray is added the result is a different TONE.
History of the Color Wheel
Richard Waller's Table of Physiological Colors (1686)
Too Limiting.
Represents most colors but not all variations that could fall between.

Mathmatician Tobias Meyer's Color Triangle (1758)
Useful for everyday color mixing.
Idea of 3 "pure" colors: red, yellow, and blue.
Progressive gradations between the 3 pure colors.
Brought 819 hues into the "Color Universe."
Meyer's modern CMYK colors can be seen in the pixels of a TV

Entomologist Moses Harris' Natural System of Colors (1766)
Attempted to explain the interplay between colors on his favorite kinds of bugs.

Naturalist/Inventor Jacob Christian Schaffer's Color System (1769)
Gave red, yellow, and blue hierarchy.
Explained that primary colors could combine to create a multitude of shades.

Butterfly Expert Ignatz Schiffermuller (1775)
Designed to identify colors encountered in nature studies

Johann Ferdinand Ritter von Schonfeld's Viennese Color Collection (1794)

Created a complete book of samples of all natural, basic, and combined colors.

Painter Philipp Otto Runge's 3D Color Sphere (1807)

Translated 3 "pure" colors in addition to black & White into a 3D Cross-sectioning sphere.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's Color Wheel (1810)
Rebutted Newton's color-spectrum theory by imagining darkness as an active force

Michel Eugene Chevreul's Hemispherical System (1839)
Used black and white as a lightening and darkening agent.

Albert Henry Munsell's Cylindrical System (1900)
Created a 3D cyclinder that depicts hue, value (lightness or darkness), and chroma (color purity/ saturation).
Described colors more scientifically.
System is still used by ANSI to identify skin and hair colors for forensic pathology, the USGS to match soil colors, in prosthodontics to select tooth shades, and by breweries to match beer colors.
Red Represents:
Mind and intellect: From a color psychology perspective, yellow stimulates our mental faculties; it activates the left or analytical brain.

Happiness and fun: Yellow is uplifting to the spirits; yellow helps create enthusiasm for life and can awaken greater confidence and optimism.

Communication of New Ideas: Yellow is related to the expression and integration of new ideas and thoughts.

Effects of Yellow:
Creative: The color of new ideas, yellow helps us find new ways of doing things.

Quick decisions: Yellow helps with clear thinking and quick decision-making but it can also be impulsive.

Anxiety producing: Yellow is fast moving so too much time in its presence can agitate and lead to nervousness and emotional instability.

Critical: Yellow makes people more mentally analytical and self critical of both themselves and others.
Yellow Represents:
Communication: Blue relates to one-to-one verbal communication and self expression.

Peace and calm: The color blue induces calm and peace within us, particularly the deeper shades.

Honesty: Blue is the colour of truth.

Authority: The darker the color blue, the more authority it has.

Religion: Blue is the colour of devotion and religious study.

Wisdom: Blue enhances the wisdom of the intellect.

Effects of Blue

Conservative: The color blue is a safe colour - the most universally liked colour of all.

Predictable: Blue is not impulsive or spontaneous and it doesn't like to be rushed - blue needs to analyze and think things through, and to work to a plan.

Orderly: Blue needs to have direction & order- untidiness and unpredictability overwhelms it.

Rigid: Blue likes familiarity. It doesn't like change and will stubbornly do things its own way, even if there is a better way.

Blue Represents:
Harmony and balance: Green is the great balance of our mental, emotional and physical energies which is why there is so much green on our planet. Green is the heart center of the body.

Growth: As in nature, green leaves are an indication the plant is still growing.

Hope: Green is the anticipation of things to come.

Effects of Green:
Rejuvenating: The color green revitalizes us when we are physically, mentally or emotionally exhausted.

Nurturing: Because of its link with the heart, green urges us to nurture others. Green is also nurturing to us - another reason why it is the most predominant colour on earth.

Dependable, agreeable and diplomatic: The color green helps us to see situations clearly from all sides.

Possessiveness: Green is a color that encourages us to want to own things and people, to collect and possess. Green encourages materialism.

Envy:Green with envy' is a common phrase and a negative reaction to the color green.
Green Represents:
Adventure and risk taking: Orange promotes physical confidence and enthusiasm - sportsmen and adventure-seekers relate well to orange.

Social communication and interaction: Orange stimulates two-way conversation between people.

Friendship: Group socializing, parties, the community.

Effects of Orange

Enthusiasm: Orange is optimistic and extroverted - the color of the uninhibited.

Rejuvenation: Orange helps to restore balance to our physical energies.

Stimulation: Orange is not as passionate or as excitable as red, but it is stimulating, particularly to the appetite - the worst color to have in the kitchen if you want to lose weight.

Courage: Orange helps us to take account of our lives, to face the consequences, to take action and make appropriate changes, and then to move onward and upward.

Vitality: Orange has a more balanced energy than red, not as passionate and aggressive, but full of vitality.
Orange Represents:
Inspiration: Original and sound ideas are created with violet - use it when looking for inspiration during brainstorming sessions.

Imagination: Violet inspires creativity with intellect - it is also stimulating to dream activity.

Individuality: Violet is unconventional, individual and original. It hates to copy anyone else and likes to do its own thing.

Spirituality: Violet assists us during prayer and meditation, helping us to get in touch with our deeper subconscious thoughts. Churches often feature violet in their stained glass windows. From a negative perspective it can relate to the cult follower.

Effects of the Color Purple/Violet:

Empathy: Compassion, kindness and a love of humanity are positive qualities of Violet.

Controlled emotion: Violet is passionate, like red, but inclined to display it in private only.

Respectable & distinguished: The darker shades of violet particularly are linked to the origins of purple where it was only available to royalty and the wealthy.

Impractical: Violet can be impractical, with its head in the clouds rather than having its feet on the ground.

Immature: Violet can be immature, encouraging fantasy and an idealism that is often difficult to achieve in real life.
The Color Purple/Violet Represents:
Can work well with almost any color

Often associated with purity, cleanliness and virtue.

It can help to convey cleanliness and simplicity
White Represents:
It's often associated with power, elegance and formality

Can also be associated with evil, death and mystery.

It can either be conservative or modern, traditional or unconventional, depending on what other colors it's used with.
Black Represents:
Neutrality: gray is impartial and dispassionate, it doesn't take sides.

Compromise: it is the transition between two non-colors, neither black nor white. It takes the middle ground, neither one way nor the other.

Control: gray is reserved, quiet and conservative. It has a steadying effect on other colors around it.
Gray Represents:
10. Researchers from Arizona State University found that there’s a specific gene that allows us to see and interpret the color red. Women have two X chromosomes, while men only possess one. Because the particular “red-seeing gene” sits on the X chromosome, it only makes sense that women would have a full understanding of the red spectrum, while our counterparts only have half the pieces to the racy red puzzle.

9. Silver-colored cars are least likely to be involved in an auto accident, since they are most visible on the road and in low light. This, coupled with lower insurance rates and the silver color’s ability to maintain a look of cleanliness.

8. Pink is the palliative color, commonly used to splash the walls in prisons and mental health care facilities to assist in subduing those who are out-of-control.

7. Colors are responsible for 62-90% of our first impressions of one another.

6. Blue is the most favored color in the world, with purple being a distant second. A whopping forty percent of people worldwide would choose blue as their favorite color.

5. Chromophobia is the rare, persistent, irrational fear of colors. Some people who have this disorder will react strongly to certain shades or tones, while others will try to avoid color altogether. Some signs and symptoms are: nausea, dizziness, shortness of breath, feelings of panic, elevated heart rate and blood pressure, anxiety, light headedness, headache, and trembling. Effective treatment involves methods and techniques that include systematic desensitization and exposure therapy.

4.Yellow and orange are not recommended for use in kitchens, as they are known appetite stimulators.

3. Color does not exist at all. It is something created by our brains as a side-effect, when it desperately tries to make sense of the overwhelming amount of information it receives from the outer world.

2. Invented in 1666 by Sir Isaac Newton, the color wheel is by far the best tool to date to help us comprehend the colors that we see. Once we grasp how the color wheel arranges the primary, secondary, and tertiary colors, we can better understand “harmonies”, or how and why certain colors complement one another. The color wheel is a major concept in any color theory class or course, and is crucial for certain careers, such as interior or graphic design.

1. “Mummy” was once a color in ancient Egypt. The Pre-Raphaelite painters of the 19th century considered it one of their favorite colors. The authentic pigment was produced all the way up until the early 20th century, when finally the supply of available mummy remains was exhausted. Though no longer containing the remnants of mummified corpses, the color “Mummy Brown” can still be found today.
10 Fun Facts About Color.
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