|As opposed to projected, television and computer images, painters use the subtractive color principle. If a chemical that
absorbs red and blue light rays is painted on to a surface, that surface
will reflect what is left, the yellow rays ( it will appear to the viewer
as yellow). If the surface absorbs red only, then it will reflect the other
two and will appear green. If the surface absorbs all hues then it will
reflect no colors and appear black. White is the sum of all hues while
black is the absence of them.
Different types of chemicals trap light rays of differing lengths when
painted on surfaces.. If the chemical absorbs all red light and a little
of the blue and a little of her yellow it will appear a darker green. If
the chemical covered surface absorbs all the red light and only the red
it will appear the green of the highest 'saturation'. The more light reflected
of all types the higher the value. The more light absorbed the lower(darker)
the value. This is the subtractive principle.
So would you expect a value five blue mixed
in equal amounts with a value five yellow to produce a value five green?
I must add here the chemical is to be considered non-transparent and if
you squint hard at the colors below you will almost be able to see their
is not one (black), nor is it five, but that is the fault of the current
indexing system and not your maths! The value will darken as a consequence
of the subtractive nature of the combined chemicals. All you need to realise
is that mixing colors will not exactly average their combined values. A
high value yellow mixed with a deep blue, say prussian blue, will produce
a green slightly deeper than the mean or average.This can be easily adjusted
using black or white you may say; and so it can but you may lose some of
the saturation you desire.
So you race out and buy a cadmium yellow medium
instead of the cadmium yellow light you used! Now the value is correct,
the saturation right but it is not the hue you had in mind. Another trip
to the paint supplier?
This type of treadmill is to be avoided. Painters
are great realists in matters of economy; they must be. Most know how to
minimise outlays for maximum return. They learn quickly their color theory
and know what suits them, and they tend to support it come what may. Often
the introduction of a new color into their palette can approximate a birth
in the family.
With white red blue and yellow all values are
obtainable, thousands of hues and values are also available. Saturation
is usually bought in small tubes and lasts forever. I advise, rather than
buying black to mix it with your red, blue and yellow.
To make color your serf rather than you
master you first subdue (use a limited palette), train (understand what makes
the harmonies) and most of all get your values exact. All the great masters
did as you see above in Vermeer's painting. (yellow ochre, light red, cobalt and cerulean).
Finally listed below are some flawed psychological generalisations regarding color.
Temperature - sometimes we speak of hues as
being warm or cold. The reds and yellow look warm and the blues and greens
look cool. A warm colored room will make you actually feel warmer than
a cold colored room by as much as 5 or 10 degrees. A high saturated warm
color will seem to expand beyond its borders and come forward. Cold colors
are by their nature recessive and shrinking.
Emotion - Very lively and vital people tend
to like bright colors were as a mentally disturbed person may prefer greyed
warm colors. It is said healers like green, and this is reflected in the
green colored robes that are worn in the operating rooms of hospitals.
It is also said that spiritual people like blue, though mystics may prefer
purple. Intellectuals are supposedly inclined toward bright yellow, and
yellow is said to be the color of the intellect. A strong ego wears brighter
colored clothes while the weaker ego goes for more muted tones. Peoples
choice of clothing often duplicates the color of their auras. Green is
the color of healing and blue promotes peace and quiet. Red should stimulate
vital activities and yellow promote intellectual serenity.
On the average the way people tune their television
is quite bad. They hardly see color at all and seem to think that almost
any color at all in an image is quite all right. Many people tune heavily
into green, which is a sign of immature color vision.
TO .... cyberscape