Basics of Graphic Design: COLOR THEORY

The next basic that we are going to talk about today is color. Color has become something important in every single day aspect. With the color we can identify the object, it can represent feelings or emotions, and even using color we can communicate without any speak out of word. Color can even emphasize something to be an attention.

Color is crucial in any life aspect, and in graphic design it’s not an exception. However, it can be intimidating sometimes. Choosing which colors that would be suitable together is frustrating. If the designer couldn’t deliver a harmony color in design, it might break the design. 

However there is something called the color theory. The color theory says about the primary and secondary color. The primary colors are red, yellow, and blue. If it’s mixed one to another, it can be new colors such as orange, green, and purple. Those new colors are called secondary colors. If all of those primary and secondary colors are mixed one to another, again it would be new colors. Put all of those colors in a wheel and it would be what’s so called a color wheel.

Next, let’s talk about hue, saturation, and value. It might not be totally familiar with those terms in daily life. However, by understanding those terms it can help to understand more nuanced colors. Hue can refer to color, it can be mentioned that hue is another word of color. Saturation is something that can refer to color intensity, whether it’s subtle or vibrant. And the last is value, it refers to how dark or light the color is, the range is from black to white.

Then how to put all of those terms all together to build a professional striking color scheme? There are some tried and true formulas based on color harmony that may help. It will be explained based on the color wheel above.

  • Monochromatic

Just pick one color or hue, and then play with the saturation and value to create the variations. This is the easiest formula and by using this formula the colors definitely match, it’s guaranteed.

  • Analogous

This analogous formula is using colors which are next to each other on the wheel. For instance, it can be greens and yellows, or blues and greens. You can use this formula as the starting point and start to play with the palette that might be unique for you. 

  • Complementary

The complementary means using colors which are opposite one to each other. To avoid the simplicity or vibrate, you can play with its saturation and value to create the palette. For instance, you can check the illustration below.

  • Split Complementary

This formula refers to using the colors on either side of the complement. It will give the same contrast with the more colors to work with. It would be interesting as it is having more variations from the very beginning. Again, use the saturation and value to create a harmony palette.

  • Triadic

This triadic color scheme uses three colors which are formed from a perfect triangle on the wheel. It might be much striking using this scheme, it might vibrate one to each other colors. You must be mindful when you want to work with this color scheme.

  • Tetradic

About this tetradic, it means that it is using colors which are formed from the rectangle shape on the color wheel. Using not only one complementary, but two. It would be best if using one color to be dominant and the others only as accent.

There are some other details that need to be attention. For example when the colors that are placed next to each other are to vibrate, try to tone it down. You can start to pick one color and try to adjust its value and saturation. Sometimes it needs contrast to put the colors in harmony.

Design must be easy on the eyes as it is a media that delivers information visually. Sometimes it means no color is more. On the design you can use black and white to balance it and once you put color accents it would stand out.

Colors deliver a message. You have to pay attention to its tone and color palettes on the design. For instance, bright colors represent a cheerful and modern vibe. While the dark and subtle color represent a moody atmosphere.

You can get inspiration to make the color scheme from observing something all around you. It can be from a campaign on billboard or packaging, and even you can browse it on the internet. The Internet serves everything you need. Keep working on your project and don’t give up to always experiment based on the color theory. Once you master it, you will get used to choosing great-looking colors.

Well, that’s all that you need to know about colors. Stay tuned, we will give you another basics that you need to master first to build a great design. Thanks for your reading and see you, folks!


Post a Comment

Post a Comment (0)

Previous Post Next Post