- Review Tonal Progression Studies: Digital Progressions (Tints, Shades, Complements), Painted Progression
- Examine examples of harmonious color combination (your favorite sweater or household object, an advertisement, photograph, book, etc.)
Color Harmony: Triadic Color System
A way to organize color based on a 12 step color wheel, wherein three colors are equally spaced from each other.
- Primary Triad: primary colors, yellow, blue and red, form an equilateral triangle with yellow at the top
- Secondary Triad: secondary colors, orange, green and violet, evenly spaced between the primaries are mixed from adjacent hues (example: red + yellow = orange)
- Intermediate Triad: intermediate colors, yellow-green, blue-green, red-violet, etc. are mixtures of a primary color with a neighboring secondary color.
Color Harmony: Color Relationships
In a composition you may wish to have certain colors that are harmonious and share visual qualities (value, hue, saturation), and others may need to assert their independence and stand out. These would have less in common with the other colors in the palette and would create an accent or focal point. It’s important, when choosing a color scheme, to resist the temptation to use all colors in equal volume. A unequal proportions are more interesting and aesthetically pleasing.
- Analogous: colors that are adjacent to each other on the color wheel (example: violet, blue-violet, red-violet). They have the shortest interval and the most harmonious relationship because three or four neighboring hues always contain a common color that dominates the group.
- Complements: using colors opposite on the color wheel. This relationship often produces visual tension, shock, or electricity (as we observed in our color interaction studies). This is often the least harmonious color relationship. A palette using complements should be “harmonized” with variations in value and saturation. (example: red and green when reduced to chromatic grays soften the effect of simultaneous contrast).
- Near-Complements: using a color and the color adjacent to its complement. This relationship softens the visual tension produced by using straight complements. (example: red and yellow-green)
- Split-Complements: based on the triad system, using one color plus two colors on either side of its complement. (example: orange and blue-violet & blue-green). This color scheme adds more variety and an opportunity for a specific accent or focus, if used in unequal proportions.
- Tetrads: based on a square, this relationship is formed when four colors equally spaced on the color wheel are used (example: green, blue, orange, red). This color relationship is more varied and can easily become un-harmonious without variation in value or saturation.
- Color Harmonies– Interactive Tool
Color Harmony Palettes
- Analogous Palette
- Choose three colors that are adjacent to each other on the color wheel.
- On a piece of bristol, create a series of neatly organized swatches. Starting with the three analogous colors at the top of the page, create a tonal progression by adding white and chromatic dark to each color.
- Split Complementary Palette
- Choose three colors: one color plus two colors on either side of its complement on the color wheel.
- On a piece of bristol, create a series of neatly organized swatches. Starting with the three split complementary colors at the top of the page, create a tonal progression by adding white and chromatic dark to each color.
Bring to class:
- Finished Color Harmony Palettes: Analogous & Split Complementary
- Finished Tonal Progressions (if you didn’t complete the Digital Tonal Progressions, visit the 6th Floor Lab to do so!)
- An example of harmonious color combination (your favorite sweater or household object, an advertisement, photograph, book, etc.)
- Your full set of paints (buy more if you are running low), and related materials
- Flashdrive or CD