Monthly Archives: February 2016

The Artist’s Color Wheel

All of you who are designers have downloaded the color wheel at least once. Let’s look at the colors that make up the color wheel and where they come from. First, we must distinguish between the RBG colors displayed on our monitors and used by Web designers and the ones artists, people who work with paints, use. the three RGB colors are red, green, and blue, but let’s set these aside for a moment and focus on the colors an artist uses. These primaries are red, blue, andgreen. They cannot be formed by mixing any other colors. Next, we have the secondary colors, which are formed when two primary colors are mixed. Yellow and red make orange. Red and blue make purple. Blue and yellow make green. So, the three secondary colors are orange, purple, and green. Finally, when we mix a secondary and a primary color we create the tertiary colors. The six tertiary colors are red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, blue-violet, and red-violet. (NOTE: you will find color wheels on the Web that feature other tertiary colors. Remember, we are talking bout the painter’s color wheel).

The three important characteristics of a color are its hue, saturation, and value. Hue is the color itself. Saturation is the brightness, or intensity, of the color. Value is how light or dark a color is.
Here is an example of an artist’s color wheel:  Click me