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Color Theory

"Color Theory" in a nutshell! My abridged version of a insanely limitless topic...

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Color Theory

  1. 1. Color Theory - Kabir Malkani* This presentation has been compiled from references available from the Internet. This is meant purely for educational purposes and the presenter does not claim to hold any ownership whatsoever; of the content (textual or graphical) included in this presentation. The ownership and copyrights of the following content belong to the respective brands /agencies / artists showcased in this presentation.
  2. 2. Topics Covered1. The Science of Color2. The Color Wheel (History)3. Primary Colors4. Secondary Colors5. Tertiary Colors6. Properties of Color7. Color Systems8. Color Schemes9. Creating a Custom Color Scheme10. Idiosyncrasies of Color11. Color Psychology12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of Colors13. Color Coding14. Perceptual Disabilities15. The Gender Connotations of Colors16. Examples of Good Color Schemes
  3. 3. #1. The Science of ColorO Color doesn’t exist!O Color is created only when our brain tries to make sense from light signals it receives from the outer world. In other words, it’s all in your head.O Without that, our world is a monochromatic place bathing in electromagnetic Deprived of color, our world would probably radiation of varied intensity look like a scene from Matrix. and wavelengths. Nothing fun about that, unless you’re into physics.
  4. 4. #1. The Science of ColorO Color is a property of light. Our eyes see only a small part of the electromagnetic spectrum.
  5. 5. #1. The Science of ColorO White light can be divided into its component parts by passing it through a prism. The light is separated by wavelength and a spectrum is formed.O Sir Isaac Newton was the first to discover this phenomenon in the seventeenth century and he named the colors of the spectrum.
  6. 6. #1. The Science of ColorO If the ends of the spectrum are bent around and joined a color circle (color wheel) is formed with purple at the meeting place.    The Color Wheel
  7. 7. #2. The Color WheelO The original color wheel is credited to Sir Isaac Newton who joined the red and violet ends of the visual spectrum into a circle. Do you remember this School Project?
  8. 8. #2. The Color WheelO This is what the Modern Day Color Wheel looks like:
  9. 9. #3. Primary ColorsO The primary colors are Red, Yellow and Blue These colors cannot be mixed from any other colors. The triangle they form on the color wheel is called the primary triad.
  10. 10. #4. Secondary ColorsO The three secondary colors (Green, Orange and Purple) are created by mixing two primary colors. Red + Yellow = Orange Red + Blue = Purple Yellow + Blue = Green
  11. 11. #5. Tertiary ColorsO When a primary color is mixed with a secondary color tertiary colors are made Yellow + Green = Lime Green Green + Blue = Turquoise Blue +Purple = Violet Purple + Red = Magenta Red + Orange = Vermillion Orange + Yellow = Light Orange
  12. 12. #6. Properties of ColorO Color has three distinct properties: Hue, Value and Saturation. To understand color you must understand how these three properties relate to each other.O Hue: When someone is talking about hue they are talking about the actual color of an object. Green is a hue as are red, yellow, blue, purple, etc.O Value/Brightness: Is a measure of how light or dark a hue is. Adding white to a hue makes it lighter and increases its value or brightness. Consequently adding black makes it darker and lowers the value or brightness.O Saturation: is the degree of purity of a hue. Pure hues are highly saturated. When gray is added the color becomes de-saturated.
  13. 13. #5. Properties of Color Understanding Hue, Value and Saturation using the Adobe Photoshop Color Saturation Picker Hue Value / BrightnessTry this out yourself to understand the difference between Value &Saturation
  14. 14. #6. Properties of Color O Shade: The result of adding black to a hue to produce a darker hue Saturation Hue Value / Brightness O Tint: The result of adding white to a hue to produce a lighter hue• Decreasing the Brightness of the hue results in a different “Shade” of the hue O Tone: A color tone is the result of adding gray to a hue.• Increasing the Brightness of the hue results in a different “Tint” of the hue• Increasing or Decreasing the Saturation of the hue results in a different “Tone” of the hue
  15. 15. #7. Color SystemsO There are two types of Color Systems OR Color Models that are commonly used for color creation:O When producing physical colors as in paint a Subtractive System (CMYK) is used and when producing colors digitally as on a computer an Additive System (RGB) is used.
  16. 16. #7. Color SystemsO Subtractive Colors (CMYK): When we see colors in physical objects we’re seeing reflective light. When we see red it’s because all the other wavelengths of light have been absorbed and only the red is reflected. This is a subtractive system, because to produce color we’re removing all the wavelengths of light who’s color we don’t want to see.O Subtractive systems start with white and continue to add color until the result is black. (White = C0+M0+Y0+K0)
  17. 17. #7. Color SystemsO Additive Colors (RGB): To create colors on a computer screen we have to add light since the light source comes from within instead of reflecting the light coming from outside the system. When there is no light we see black (Black = R0+G0+B0) and we as we add more color we move toward white. (White = R255+G255+B255)
  18. 18. #7. Color Systems PMS (PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM) O The Pantone Color Matching System is largely a standardized color reproduction system. By standardizing the colors, different manufacturers in different locations can all refer to the Pantone system to make sure colors match without direct contact with one another. O There is a special subset of Pantone colors that can be reproduced using CMYK . However, most of the Pantone system’s 1,114 spot colors cannot be simulated with CMYK but with 13 base pigments (15 including white and black) mixed in specified amounts. O The Pantone system also allows for many special colors to be produced, such as metallics and fluorescents.
  19. 19. #8. Color SchemesAchromatic Color SchemeO Any color that lacks strong chromatic content is said to be unsaturated, achromatic, or neutral. Pure achromatic colors include black, white and all grays. Adobe Illustrator Color Window displaying Pure Achromatic Colors Jesus preaching, known as The hundred Guilder Print Rembrandt van Rijn
  20. 20. #8. Color Schemes Chromatic Grays O Also known as near neutral colors… these are almost like achromatic colors with a hint of color and brightnessAdvertisingInterior Design The Magpie Claude Monet
  21. 21. #8. Color Schemes Warm & Cool Colors The color circle can be divided into warm and cool colors based on the Color TemperatureWarm Colors Cool ColorsO The colors on the red – orange - O The colors on the green - blue – yellow side of the wheel are said purple side of the wheel are said to be warm because they are to be cool because they are associated with warm phenomena. associated with cool phenomena. e.g. Sunlight, Fire etc. e.g. Water, Ice, Sky etc.O Warm colors are vivid and O Cool colors give an impression of energetic, and tend to advance in calm, and are said to recede -- space. they appear farther from the observer
  22. 22. #8. Color SchemesWarm & Cool ColorsO Can you tell apart the compositions using Warm or Cool Color Schemes? A Girl Asleep at Table Femme Couchée Lisant Johannes Vermeer Pablo Picasso
  23. 23. #8. Color Schemes Monochromatic Colors O Monochromatic color schemes are made up of different tones, shades and tints within a specific hue. These are the simplest color schemes to create, as they’re all taken from the same hue, making it harder to create a jarring or ugly scheme (though both are still possible). Monochromatic Schemes can be represented by asingle spoke of the color wheel Examples Interiors following a Monochromatic Color Scheme
  24. 24. #8. Color SchemesAnalogous ColorsO Analogous color schemes use colors that are next to each other on the color wheel. They usually match well and create serene and comfortable designs.O Analogous color schemes are often found in nature and are harmonious and pleasing to the eye.O Make sure you have enough contrast when choosing an analogous color scheme.Examples Interiors following a Analogous Color Scheme
  25. 25. #8. Color Schemes Complementary Colors O Colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel are considered to be complementary colors. O The high contrast of complementary colors creates a vibrant look especially when used at full saturation. This color scheme must be managed well so it is not jarring. O Complementary color schemes are tricky to use in large doses, but work well when you want something to stand out. O Complementary colors are really bad for text.Examples Interiors following a Complementary Color Scheme
  26. 26. #8. Color Schemes Split-Complementary Colors O The split-complementary color scheme is a variation of the complementary color scheme. In addition to the base color, it uses the two colors adjacent to its complement. O This color scheme has the same strong visual contrast as the complementary color scheme, but has less tension. O The split-complimentary color scheme is often a good choice for beginners, because it is difficult to mess up.Examples Interiors following a Split-Complementary Scheme Photography
  27. 27. #8. Color Schemes Triadic Colors O A triadic color scheme uses colors that are evenly spaced around the color wheel. O Triadic color schemes tend to be quite vibrant, even if you use pale or unsaturated versions of your hues. O To use a triadic harmony successfully, the colors should be carefully balanced - let one color dominate and use the two others for accent. ExamplesA Triadic Color Scheme can be created by drawing an Equilateral Interiors following a Triadic Color Triangle on the Color Scheme Wheel
  28. 28. #8. Color Schemes Double Complementary (Tetradic) Colors O The rectangle or tetradic color scheme uses four colors arranged into two complementary pairs. O This rich color scheme offers plenty of possibilities for variation. O Tetradic color schemes works best if you let one color be dominant. O You should also pay attention to the balance between warm and cool colors in your design.Examples This painting uses red as the dominate color with blue, yellow A Double Complementary and green as Color Scheme can be accents. created by drawing a Rectangle on the Color Wheel
  29. 29. #8. Color SchemesSquareThe square color scheme is similar to theDouble Complementary, but with all fourcolors spaced evenly around the color circle.O Square color schemes works best if you let one color be dominant.O You should also pay attention to the balance between warm and cool colors in your design.Example A Square Tetrad Color Scheme can be created Interiors following a Square Color by drawing a Square on Scheme the Color Wheel
  30. 30. #8. Color SchemesO Can you Identify the Color Schemes used in the following visuals? Use the Color Wheel for reference
  31. 31. #9. Creating a Custom Color SchemeO Custom color schemes are the hardest to create. Instead of following the predefined color schemes discussed above, a custom scheme isn’t based on any formal rules. Keep in mind things like Hue / Chroma, value, and saturation when creating these kinds of color schemes. There are several online tools available The colors here all have similar Hue and to create your own custom color saturation levels. schemes: Using one color with a high Chroma / Hue among other colors with lower chromas is another effective method (the Click on the logos to jump to the respective URLs higher Chroma color can act as an accent).
  32. 32. #10. Idiosyncrasies of Color Light colors appear larger than dark colors on the same background. The same color looks clearer against a dark background than it does against a light background. Any color appears more dynamic when it is displayed against a background of gray.
  33. 33. #10. Idiosyncrasies of Color The purple squares, although identical seem to vary in color and size on different colored backgrounds. A brilliant, vibrant color will not show much change despite different surroundings. The gray sample appears to be different against different backgrounds
  34. 34. #10. Idiosyncrasies of Color The same color will appear to change in value, depending upon the surrounding color. Green on white appears to be brighter than the green on black. The Green Hue appears to be different in both these samples.
  35. 35. #11. Color PsychologyO "Warm colors" (yellow, orange, red) evoke pleasant, often dynamic, reactions.O "Cool colors" (green, blue, purple) evoke a quieter mood, and are considered less outgoing than the warm
  36. 36. #11. Color PsychologyO Colors can have different effects on people and can even hold different cultural meanings beyond what may be naturally intuitive.
  37. 37. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of ColorsO Understand the Social & Cultural Symbolism of Colors. Colors carry a strong emotional weight for most people, due to the social connotations that are often associated with them. Red By Geography Australian Aboriginals: Land, Earth China: Good Luck, Celebration, Summoning Israel: Sacrifice, Sin India: Purity South Africa: Color Of Mourning Russia: Bolsheviks And Communism Eastern: Worn By Brides, Happiness And Prosperity Western: Excitement, Danger, Love, Passion, Stop, Christmas (With Green), Valentine’s Day Other Symbolism Astrology: Gemini Feng Shui: Yang, Fire, Good Luck, Money, Respect, Recognition, Vitality Psychology: Stimulates Brain Wave Activity, Increases Heart Rate, Increases Blood Pressure Roses: Love, Respect — Red And Yellow Together Means Gaiety, Joviality.
  38. 38. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of Colors By Geography Pink Korea: Trust Eastern: Marriage Western: Love, Babies, Especially Female Babies, Valentine’s Day Other Symbolism Feng Shui: Yin, Love Psychology: Used In Diet Therapy As An Appetite Suppressant, Relaxes Muscles, Soothing Roses: Gratitude And Appreciation (Deep Pink) Or Admiration & Sympathy (Light Pink) By GeographyOrange Ireland: Religious (Protestants) Netherlands: House Of Orange Western: Halloween (With Black), Creativity, Autumn Other Symbolism Astrology: Sagittarius Feng Shui: Yang, Earth, Strengthens Conversation, Purpose, Organization Psychology: Energizes, Stimulates Appetite Roses: Enthusiasm, Desire
  39. 39. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of ColorsGold By Geography Eastern: Wealth, Strength Western: Wealth Other Symbolism Astrology: Leo (Golden Yellow/Orange) Feng Shui: Yang, Metal, God ConsciousnessPurple By Geography Thailand: Mourning, Widows Eastern: Wealth Western: Royalty Other Symbolism Astrology: Gemini, Sagittarius, And Pisces Feng Shui: Yin, Spiritual Awareness, Physical And Mental Healing
  40. 40. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of ColorsYellow By Geography China: Nourishing, Royalty Egypt: Mourning India: Merchants Japan: Courage Eastern: Proof Against Evil, For The Dead, Sacred, Imperial Western: Hope, Hazards, Coward, Weakness, Taxis Other Symbolism Astrology: Taurus Feng Shui: Yang, Earth, Auspicious, Sun Beams, Warmth, Motion Psychology: Energizes, Relieves Depression, Improves Memory, Stimulates Appetite Roses: Sociability, Friendship, Joy, GladnessBaby By GeographyBlue Western: Babies, Especially Male Babies Other Symbolism Astrology: Virgo
  41. 41. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of Colors By GeographyGreen China: Green Hats Imply A Man’s Wife Is Cheating On Him, Exorcism India: Islam Ireland: Symbol Of The Entire Country, Religious (Catholics) Islam: Perfect Faith Japan: Life Eastern: Eternity, Family, Health, Prosperity, Peace Western: Spring, New Birth, Go, Money, Saint Patrick’s Day, Christmas (With Red) Other Symbolism Astrology: Cancer (Bright Green) Feng Shui: Yin, Wood, Growing Energy, Nurturing, Balancing, Healing, Health, Calming Psychology: Soothing, Relaxing Mentally And Physically, Helps With Depression, Anxiety And Nervousness By GeographyGray Eastern: Helpers, Travel Western: Boring, Dull, Plain, Sad Other Symbolism Feng Shui: Yin, Metal, Dead, Dull, Indefinite
  42. 42. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of Colors By GeographyBlue China: Immortality Iran: Color Of Heaven And Spirituality, Mourning Eastern: Wealth, Self-cultivation Western: Depression, Sadness, Conservative, Corporate, "Something Blue" Bridal Tradition Other Symbolism Astrology: Capricorn And Aquarius (Dark Blue) Feng Shui: Yin, Water, Calm, Love, Healing, Relaxing, Peace, Trust, Adventure, Exploration Psychology: Calming, Lowers Blood Pressure, Decreases Respiration By GeographyBrown Australian Aboriginals: Color Of The Land Western: Wholesome, Earthy, Dependable, Steadfast, Health Other Symbolism Astrology: Capricorn And Scorpio (Reddish Brown) Feng Shui: Yang, Earth, Industry, Grounded
  43. 43. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of ColorsWhite By Geography China: Death, Mourning India: Unhappiness, Mourning, Peace Japan: White Carnation Symbolizes Death Eastern: Funerals, Helpful People, Children, Marriage, Mourning, Peace, Travel Western: Brides, Angels, Good Guys, Hospitals, Doctors, Peace (White Dove) Other Symbolism Astrology: Aries And Pisces Feng Shui: Yang, Metal, Death, Mourning, Spirits, Ghosts, Poise, Confidence Roses: Reverence, Humility, TruceViolet Other Symbolism Astrology: Virgo And Libra Psychology: Suppresses Appetite, Peaceful Environment, Good For Migraines
  44. 44. #12. The Social & Cultural Symbolism of ColorsBlack By Geography Australian Aboriginals: Color Of The People China: Color For Young Boys Thailand: Bad Luck, Unhappiness, Evil Eastern: Career, Evil, Knowledge, Mourning, Penance Western: Funerals, Death, Halloween (With Orange), Bad Guys, Rebellion Other Symbolism Feng Shui: Yin, Water, Money, Income, Career Success, Emotional Protection, Power, Stability, Bruises, Evil Psychology: Self-confidence, Strength, PowerSilver Other Symbolism Western: Stylish, Money Feng Shui: Yin, Metal, Trust, Romance
  45. 45. #13. Color CodingO Use Color Codes to Denote Relationships & Hierarchy
  46. 46. #14. Perceptual DisabilitiesO Never Rely on Color Alone. Consider Perceptual Disabilities such as color blindness. Males are ten times more likely to be color blind than females. The disability is especially pronounced among male Caucasians: 8% suffer some form of color blindness. Imagine a color blind person operating these switches without the “Start / Stop” Labels Ishihara Test for color vision problems. Someone with a red- green color deficiency may not see the red number in this example.
  47. 47. #15. The Gender Connotations of Colors O Be Aware of the Gender Connotations of Colors O In general, women are more sensitive to color than men. O Men are ten times as likely to be color blind O Studies also show gender differences in color memories and color preferences. O Preferentially, women list shades of red first; men list shades of blue. The social associations of pink and blue may be largely responsible.
  48. 48. #16. Examples of Good Color SchemesTraditional Art Interior DecorAnalogous, Warm Analogous, Cool
  49. 49. #16. Examples of Good Color Schemes Logo Design Fashion Design Jewelry Design Triadic Monochromatic Split Complementary
  50. 50. #16. Examples of Good Color Schemes Monochromatic Achromatic
  51. 51. #16. Examples of Good Color Schemes Complementary Analogous
  52. 52. AssignmentO Create an artwork following any one of the color schemes discussed in this presentation O Choose from projects listed below: O Poster Design (For a Social Cause) O Magazine Cover Design (Fashion / Business) O Brochure Cover (for an Exclusive Resort) O Portfolio Website (for a Model or Artist)* Final Date for submitting this assignment is the 31st ofMarch 2013