Tuesday, March 30, 2010

April 2010 Newsletter

Colors. They're fun. They're vibrant. They enrich our lives.  I was just thinking about how much our lives have changed for those of us who were brought up during the mid-20th century. It's hard to imagine that once upon a time we watched television in black and white--no color, no HD, and with only three channels. How dull can you get? (Although lots of us thought it was cool then!) Today, we're watching the same “concept,” with drama flowing from a thin rectangle hung on  a wall, in full-brilliant color and high-definition.  Just see how uninspiring this black and white ad is for Bewitched.

Black and white television: what shade of gray do you like?

Years later when color television came along, a similar scene, in full color, was far more interesting. This was revolutionary at the time. That's what color does. 

Last month I covered the primary colors: yellow, red and blue. From these three we can create lots and lots of colors (even a million). But for now, I just want to talk about the three naturals, orange, green and violet or what's called the secondary colors. 

Creating a secondary color starts with one primary, which you add to another primary, thus making a new secondary one.  It goes like this:

With both the primary and secondary colors, you can create almost anything you want. Except perhaps for color pencil and pastels, you really don't need to buy all those endless colors from paint manufacturers (oh shucks!) to create a painting. It's just a matter of mixing the right color. And as with everything else, it's just a matter of practice.

Below, I've created a color wheel that includes something called complementary colors. These are the colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel. While we may think that these colors “complement” each other, they actually complete each other, creating some of the most beautiful grays and browns when mixed. 

Complementary colors are also rather striking in a picture―be it a painting or photo.

©2010 by jjgoodell

Try it tonight!
Why not pull out some watercolor paints tonight, select only primary and secondary colors and start mixing away. First mix some secondaries, then see what happens when you mix the complementaries together.

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