Red, yellow and blue are the primary colors. Primary colors room the most an easy colors. Girlfriend can"t do them by mixing any other colors. Orange, green and purple room the secondary colors. A an additional color is make by mix two primary colors. Because that instance, if you mix red and yellow, you acquire orange.

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The color Wheel

A shade wheel shows just how colors room related. ~ above a color wheel, each an additional color is in between the major colors that are supplied to make it. Orange is in between red and yellow due to the fact that orange is do by mixing red through yellow. What go between secondary colors and primary colors? Intermediate, or tertiary, colors are made by mix a primary shade with a secondary color the is alongside it. Red-orange, yellow-orange and also yellow-green are some intermediary colors.

TRY IT! do a color wheel is a good way come understand how colors work. Start with red, yellow, and blue paint?the main colors. Use these come make second colors. Then do tertiary colors by mixing major colors v the nearest second colors. (For example, you could mix yellow with eco-friendly to make yellow-green, or yellow through orange to do yellow-orange.)

Value: Tints and Shades

The lightness or darkness of a color is dubbed its value.

You can uncover the worths of a color by make its tints and also shades.

Tints room light worths that are made by mixing a color with white. Because that example, pink is a color of red, and light blue is a color of blue.

Shades space dark values that space made by mix a color with black. Maroon is a shade of red, and navy is a the shade of blue.


Fields in a increasing Storm by Vincent van Gogh

This painting by Vincent valve Gogh, fields in a rising Storm, has actually tints and shades that blue in the sky, and tints and also shades of environment-friendly in the fields.

TRY IT! Start with some paint in her favorite color. Mix it with different quantities of white to make tints, and different quantities of black color to make shades. Then shot creating a photo or a design that provides all these tints and also shades.

Complementary Colors

Complementary (com-pluh-MEN-tuh-ree) colors sit the contrary each other on the color wheel. Since they space opposites, they tend to look especially lively when offered together. When you put complementary color together, each color looks more noticeable.


Carnation, Lily, Lily, increased by man Singer Sargent

Red and also green are an example of safety colors. Look in ~ the painting Carnation, Lily, Lily, climbed by john Singer Sargent. The reddish-pink color of the flowers really stands out against the green background. Imagine if Sargent had painted every yellow or blue flowers instead. Lock would just blend in through the environment-friendly (ho-hum).

TRY IT! select colors that are opposite each various other on the shade wheel. Because that example, girlfriend might select blue and also orange. Do a snapshot that offers both colors. Don"t they do an exciting contrast? That"s because the colors are opposites.

Analogous Colors

Analogous (uh-NAL-uh-gus) colour sit next to each various other on the shade wheel. They tend to look pleasant together because they are closely related.


Sunflowers by Vincent valve Gogh

Orange, yellow-orange, and also yellow are an example of analogous colors. Castle are combined nicely in Sunflowers, a paint by Vincent valve Gogh. Just how do you recognize that these colors are carefully related? they share a color?each the them contains some yellow.

TRY IT! choose a main color and a an additional color. Because that example, friend might pick blue and green. Don"t they look pretty together? That"s since they room analogous. With just these 2 colors, friend can develop even much more analogous colors?blue-green, green-blue, and others in-between. All of these will have actually a shade in common: blue.

Neutral Colors

Neutral (NOO-trul) colors don"t usually display up on the shade wheel. Neutral colors include black, white, gray, and sometimes brown and also beige. They space sometimes called ?earth tones.?


Circus through Georges Seurat

In Circus, Georges Seurat uses numerous different neutral colors. You can see a couple of glimpses that red, blue, and also yellow in this painting. But the in its entirety effect is of organic brown and gray colors, prefer those you can see in rocks or in sand, dirt, and also clay.

TRY IT! There room a few different ways to make neutral colors. You have the right to blend black and also white to make gray. Friend can create brown in two ways?by blending 2 complementary colour together, or through blending all three primary colors together.

Warm Colors

Warm colors room made with red, orange, yellow, or some mix of these. Warm colors tend to do you think the sunlight and warmth.


The Fighting Temeraire by william Turner

In The Fighting Temeraire by william Turner, the warm colors the the sunset provide a feeling of brightness and also heat. Look at the red dispersing from the setting sun and the deep gold glow ~ above the water. If you"re emotion cold, looking at colors choose these can actually make you feel warmer!

Cool Colors

Cool colors are made with blue, green, purple, or some mix of these. Cool colors might make friend think that cool and peaceful things, prefer winter skies and still ponds.

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White Barn by Georgia O"Keeffe

In this paint by Georgia O"Keeffe, White Barn, the cool blue of the elevator contributes to the quiet feeling. The basic shapes and also stillness that the barn offer this paint a restful look, and also the blue makes it feel even much more peaceful. Imagine how different the paint would look v a glowing red sky?it can seem much more exciting 보다 restful.