State the different methods of determining the harmony of
In This Chapter, you’ll learn on:
Identify and explain what harmony of colours is.
State the different methods of determining the
harmony of colours:
• Analogous colour;
• Complementary colour;
• Warm/cool colours
Identify and Explain What Harmony of Colours Is
To put in simple terms, color harmony refers to the art and
science of putting together colors that look good.
Harmonious colors are colors that work well together, hence
producing a color scheme that is visually attractive. The
color wheel is used as a tool for identifying harmonious
Over the centuries, painters have researched and
experimented with colour combination and harmony,
resulting in pleasing arrangements and combinations of
colour schemes. Today, we have diverse sets of colours that
work perfect well together. Colour harmony is one of the key
factors that contribute to the success of a design. Different
types of harmonies exist, and they’re used by the designers
Analogous colours are any three colours that are
adjacent (means: side by side) to each other in the
colour wheel. For example, Orange and orange-red,
green and yellow-green, blue and blue-green.
Red, red-orange and orange
Yellow, yellow-green and
Analogous colour can be found on objects that we
get to contact in real life. Take a look at the
photographs below. It is a green leafy plant which
uses analogous colour scheme.
Colours found in this flowering plant are yellow, yellow-green
and green. They are colours which are side by side on the
Complementary colours are colours that are
opposite each other on the colour wheel. For
example, violet and yellow, blue and orange, red
These colours offer the greatest contrast, so the
effect can be bold and dramatic. Complimentary
colours when mixed together produce a neutral or
One example of real object is as below.
Colours found in the above picture are red and
green (red tulip with green leaves and stem). Red
and green are complementary colours.
Complementary colours are also known as contrast
harmony. Complementary colours are directly across
each other in the colour wheel. The very fact that
they are in opposite points of the chromatic circle
produces a strong contrast. These colours are
reinforced mutually, so that a same colour will
appear to be more intense and vibrant when it is
associated to its complementary. By using colours
which are opposite of each other, you create colour
schemes which are high contrast, hence brighter
and more vivid. These contrasts are, then, suitable to
call the attention and for design works in which a
strong impact through the use of colours is desired.
The nature colour scheme refers to any colour
combination which occurs in natural environment.
Nature can be a good example to show colour
harmony. These examples show colour harmony
using nature colours. For example,
Mangoes on the tree with lots of green
leaves.White clouds in blue sky
Colours can broadly be divided into two
categories. The two categories are the
warm colours and cool colours. This is a
crucial element in colour combination to
Warm colours are perceived to be
energetic, vivid and tend to advance in
space. On the other hand, cool colors
seen as soothing as well as to give the
impression of calmness.
Use colours of similar temperature to