When it comes to colour, there are so many options to choose from. It can be difficult to decide which ones will look best together. In this article, we will explore the topic of complementary colours. Complementary colours are two colours that are opposite each other on the colour wheel. When used together, they create a visually pleasing effect. For some, this will raise more questions than it answers. Don’t worry, we have everything you need.
What is a Colour Wheel?
A colour wheel is a tool that is used to help artists and designers understand the relationship between colours. It is a circle divided into many different sections, with each section representing a different colour. The colours are arranged in a way that shows how they relate to each other. For example, red and green are opposite each other on the colour wheel, so they are complementary colours.
What are Complementary Colours?
Using the colour wheel as a guide, we can see that complementary colours are the colours that are opposite each other. In other words, if you imagine a line going through the centre of the colour wheel, the colours on either side of that line would be complementary.
Examples of complementary colour pairs are:
- Red and green (also both primary colours)
- Yellow and purple
- Blue and orange
Why are Complementary Colours Important?
In the world of art and design, complementary colours are used to create contrast and visual interest. By using contrasting colours, you can make certain elements of a design stand out. For example, if you have a yellow background with black lettering, the black lettering will be much easier to read than if the background was white.
In the natural world, complementary colours can also be used to create contrast. For example, many flowers have dark green leaves with brightly coloured petals. This contrast makes the flowers more visible to pollinators like bees and butterflies.
In the art world, complementary colours are often used in paintings to create contrast and visual interest. For example, a painting with a blue sky and green trees will have more visual interest than a painting with a blue sky and blue trees. When perusing the wonderful art from Fine Print Co, pay attention to how artists use complementary colours to create contrast and visual interest in their paintings.
When choosing complementary colours for your art projects, keep in mind that some colours are more complementary than others. For example, orange is more complementary to blue than it is to green. Experiment with different colour combinations to see what works best for you.
While we’re in the world of colour, the three primary colours are red, yellow, and blue. The three secondary colours are orange, green, and purple. All other colours are created by mixing these primary and secondary colours.
What does this mean? Well, in the world of art, it’s often helpful to think about colours in terms of their opposites. For example, red is the opposite of green, blue is the opposite of orange, and yellow is the opposite of purple. The more you know about primary, secondary, and complementary colours, the more control you’ll have over the colours in your paintings.
If you want to see complementary colours in action, some famous combinations include Monet’s Rouen Cathedral, Degas’ Ballerina and Lady with Fan, and van Gogh’s Self Portrait. Why not try out a few combinations of your own? There are endless possibilities when it comes to exploring complementary colours in your artwork!