AD100 Applied Color Theory


Color Schemes

There are 6 color schemes, and of the 6, 3 are simple and 3 are beautiful.


Design principle of Contrast.

1. Complementary Colors Those colors opposite one another on the color wheel.

2. Split Comp (Qillar variant) ex. R-YG-BG (+G with Qillar Variant) Function by the principal of harmony. Instead of only the directly opposite colors, one side takes the colors to both the left and right instead, suggesting the opposing color.

3. Analogous (Harmony - interior designers) - Take 5 colors in a row along the color wheel OR Take those 5 but only use every other one.


Derived not so much from the biological machine, but by Order.

4. Triads - 3 colors separated by three colors equidistantly around the color wheel. Look good together because of the Order. (Balance which implies the fullness of the wheel - completion)

Primary Triad - Yellow, Blue, Red

Secondary Triad - Violet, Orange, Green

Exotic/Oriental Triad: RV-YO-BG

Startling Visual Triad: RO-YG-BV (startling visual contrast)

5. Tetrads - 4 colors separated by two colors around the color wheel. Comes the closest to Nature. Balance related. Offers the fullness of the wheel - more naturalistic. Two sets of complimentary colors.

6. Dyad - 2 colors searated by 2 colors... a warm one and a cool one. Functions because of Harmony. Contains just enough of the target color to make the leap. The color triangle (upcoming) Color wheel is no good for mixing colors.

DC comics of the 50s & 60s
Hero - Primary Triad of Red, Yellow & Blue
Villains - Secondary Triad of Green, Orange & Violet

Aquaman in a blue world... green legs, orange chest (compliment) and yellow hair.

"Order creates beauty" Intervalic relationships.

Complementary Colors - Each other's opposite, mutually intensifying.

Analogous - They look like they belong together. They are harmonious.

Harmony - Change from one condition to another with little variation. Seems to have a familial relationship, something of its neighbors in it.

Greeks: Aesthetics of Beauty