No medium of visual art ever succeeded without understanding the properties of color and how it works on objects and the corresponding effect that it carries. To understand fully the colors and its usage, it is best that to learn the structure of colors in a color wheel. Understanding the structures will help later on to break it down to get the utmost effect that coloring provides in any work of color art.
Typically, a color wheel is divided into twelve colors. These colors form imaginary triangular lines for the primary, secondary and the tertiary colors. The primary colors are red, yellow, and blue that form the first triangle. This is followed by the secondary and the tertiary colors. Other more complex color wheels include other shades and hues but just the same the colors triangulate as it relates to one another.
Most watercolor artists can do entire masterpieces using only primary colors. The red the blue and the yellow are mixed together in varying degrees and temperaments to come out with all colors possibilities that they want to use. In fact, a few decades back, there is actually very limited option when it comes to color selection. Artists buy primary color pigments and mix together colors that they use.
The Primary Colors
Blue, Red and Yellow comprises the primary colors. These are so-called primary colors because these are the color from which all other colors are derived. There is no possible combination anywhere that could create these colors and so this is where other colors are based on.
The Secondary Colors
The secondary colors also form a triangle on the wheel. These are the orange, violet, and green. Secondary colors are the result of combining two equal amounts of primary colors. For example, Green is a result of combining Yellow and Blue in equal proportions, Violet is a result of Red and Blue while mixing Yellow and Red will give you Orange. Again provided that the combination is exactly of the same proportion, the result would be the colors already mentioned. Changing the proportions will give an altogether different color other than secondary.
The Tertiary Colors
This is the third color group in the color wheel. To come out with tertiary colors you will mix a secondary color with the primary color that you would want to dominate the hue. For example, to create red orange, you will mix orange with red, blue green is a mixture of green and blue and so forth. There are six colors here, Blue Violet, Red Violet, Blue Green, Yellow Green, Yellow Orange, and Red Orange. To change the tint, you will add a portion of a primary color that you would want more pronounced in the new color created; doing that will give you infinite color possibilities for your palette.
Warm to Cool
Depending on the color (or the dominant color chosen), you could create degrees of coolness and warmth to your art. Red is the warmest color while blue is the coolest to the eye. Coloring in warm hues will make the object in the work seem to stand out while using cool colors give the effect that the objects recede.
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