Colour Theory – Complementary colours

COMPLEMENTARY COLOURS

AN EASY WAY TO ADD SHADOWS

Last week we looked at the Colour Wheel which is the foundation of the colour theory. The complementary colours were mentioned in that article, however we didn’t look at those in detail.

20180523_195621When mixing primary colours (red, yellow and blue), the secondary colours occur (orange, green and purple). An easy way to remember which the complementary colours are, is to visualise the colour wheel. Those sitting opposite are called Complementary colours. See below; green is red’s complementary colour, purple is yellow’s and orange is blue’s.

Another easy way to memorise this is that its primary colour’s complementary is the one created by the other two primary colours. ie. red’s complementary is green (blue + yellow). Anyway, lets not make it to complicated. With practice you will be able to remember instantly, until then just open the Colour Wheel and have a look.

The amazing thing with complementary colours is they have the ability to “mute” the primary colours with which they are mixed. This allows you to easily add shadows to your paintings. It is very very useful when you are working with limited palette of colours (ie. red, yellow, blue).

…complementary colours…have the ability to “mute” the primary colours…

Try mixing red with some green. You will instantly notice that the red becomes darker, almost dirty, which gives the impression of shadow. You might want to experiment with the different combinations. I did my exercise recently; see the results below. Later this week we will look at a more comprehensive exercise.

Materials

Again just try to keep it simple.This is not an attempt to create a beautiful painting; we are just trying to explore how complementary colours work.  Allow for 1.0 hour.

  • A small brush (any type will do),
  • Yellow Acrylic Paint
  • Blue Acrylic Paint
  • Red Acrylic Paint
  • Canvas (canvas pad – easier and cheaper for this exercise)
  • A pencil and a rubber

20180523_201132

A quick summary of the above is here:

  • See the primary and secondary colours on the Colour Wheel.
  • Those sitting opposite on the colour wheel are called complementary colours.
  • Mix complementary colours to create muted colours which can be used as shadows.

The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“I have been passionate about painting since I remember myself. I started by just eexperimenting with colours, colour mixing and colour application. However , it’s not always easy to achieve what you want unless you know exactly what you are doing. Techniques are different for different media; colour theory though is the basis of painting and is the same for everything! I decided to teach myself the basics; and here I am sharing that with you!

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2

 

 

Colour Theory – Basics

COLOUR WHEEL

THE FOUNDATION OF COLOUR THEORY

I recently decided to teach myself the basics of colour theory; I started with the colour wheel. This provides the fundamental background of colour combination and allows you to further develop techniques. In following articles we will explore other aspects of colour mixing and combination.

Materials:

Keep it as simple as possible. The aim is to explore the colours and their combinations, not to make the most beautiful colour wheel ever created.  Allow for 1.5 hours.

  • A small brush (any type will do),
  • Yellow Acrylic Paint
  • Blue Acrylic Paint
  • Red Acrylic Paint
  • Canvas (canvas pad – easier and cheeper for this exercise)
  • A pencil and a rubber

 

…fundamental background of colour combination…allows you to further develop techniques.

The principle of the colour wheel is very simple. You start using the three basic colours; red, yellow and blue. These colours are called the primary colours and are the base and main components of every other colour. Having these three and mixing them in different quantities allows you to mix any other colour. The primary colours wheel is the one right below.

20180523_191822.jpg

Once you have created the primary colours wheel then, we are ready to start mixing those three together to create our second colour wheel; the wheel of secondary colours. The colours sitting opposite each other in the secondary colour wheel are called complementary colours (this will be useful for creating shadows – see next article). As you might already know mixing the primary colours with each other gives you a first set of very useful colours: Orange, Green and Purple.

  • Blue + Yellow = Green
  • Red + Yellow = Orange
  • Blue + Red = Purple

20180523_192829.jpg

The second step has now been made. We have our secondary colours filling the second wheel. Final step is to create a third colour which will be filled with the tertiary colours. As you can easily guess, mixing the primary colours in different quantities (exactly as you did for the secondary colours above) gives you greens, purples and oranges of different strength. So here you can experiment and create colours you like more by mixing slightly more blue, or a bit more yellow or maybe a bit more red? Create as many mixes you like. For the sake of this exercise I created only a couple of each combination.

20180523_214232defde.jpg

 

A quick summary of the previous steps is here:

  • Primary colours are: Yellow, Blue, Red
  • Secondary colours are: Orange, Green, Purple
  • Tertiary colours are: The combinations of primary colours  using different quantities of each colour. Create Yellowish Green or Blueish Purple etc.

 


The Artist says:

28407451_1162363890564038_455176961_o“I have been passionate about painting since I remember myself. I started by just eexperimenting with colours, colour mixing and colour application. However , it’s not always easy to achieve what you want unless you know exactly what you are doing. Techniques are different for different media; colour theory though is the basis of painting and is the same for everything! I decided to teach myself the basics; and here I am sharing that with you!

 

 

 

 

Art is more fun when you meet the artists themselves! Visit THE ARTIST…

CHROMA

Love Sketching & Painting

Παρουσίαση2