Artist Tip Of The Month
Knowing the Color WheelKnowing the color wheel and how colors relate to one another is
important. Purchase a good color wheel and keep it handy when you are
painting. There are several points to consider when selecting colors for
It is important to have color dominance and color variation. Greens
seem to create problems for artists, especially students. Don't make all
your greens the same. Learn to mix them, using all the blues and yellows;
then mix the complements to see the grays you get.
Colors opposite each other on the color wheel are complements, and
when used together give excitement to your painting by enhancing and
brightening each color.
Bits of pure color next to neutrals or grayed areas make your painting
Using colors adjacent on the color wheel -- analogous colors- will
give harmony to your painting.
You need to understand color value (lightness or darkness) and
intensity (brightness or dullness). Good values make a painting. Think
light, medium, and dark. A good rule is to put the darkest dark next to
your lightest light at the center of interest. Remember that colors look
different depending on the colors around them.
Color temperature is important too. A color like red is warm while blue
is cool, but there are warm blues and cool reds. Warm colors come forward
while cool colors recede.
The best way to learn about color is to use it. You can read about
color theory all you want, but you need to use, mix and experiment with
Elements and Principles of Design
Elements of Light
Finding the Right Subject
Painting on a Sunny Day
Painting Still Life
The Color Wheel
When is a Painting Finished?