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Quick and Dirty Color Theory

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By DarlingMionette   |   Watch
Published: April 19, 2010
© 2010 - 2019 DarlingMionette
My Quick & Dirty Color Theory Tutorial. That turned out to not be so quick >.> I got absorbed and explained a lot more than I originally intended. LMAO I hope you guys find it useful :)

More tutorials to come!
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Comments484
anonymous's avatar
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Raffy1209's avatar
Raffy1209Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for sharing your knowledge. 
Sereida-Arts's avatar
Sereida-ArtsStudent General Artist
Thanks for making this, you have quite an ability for explaining things :D
Shirubabe's avatar
ShirubabeHobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for this!
Killerkirb's avatar
I finally understand 'warm' and 'cool' colors by utilizing the hue values.
salty-stylus's avatar
salty-stylusHobbyist
I need to brush up on my color theory, and this was helpful, thanks! You've got some awesome resources, and I thank you for that 
Primary-Note's avatar
Primary-NoteHobbyist
If a base color is yellow, for the lighter colors would you still go to warmer colors or do you just move it closer to white?
ShisukeNearingKonoha's avatar
ShisukeNearingKonohaHobbyist Digital Artist
*aggressively tries to force all of this into my memory at once*
Random-Derp's avatar
Random-DerpStudent Digital Artist
Amazing :D

Thanks a lot, I'll need to lecture it a few more times and I'll try it in practice soon ^^
SolyWack's avatar
SolyWackHobbyist Digital Artist
This was very good. I feel like I just took a week long class on color theory in.. hmmm... 20 minutes! I know so much more now. The internet is an amazing place indeed.
erineclair's avatar
erineclairHobbyist General Artist
ah very detailed <3 saving this for reads. but basically, it has what i'm looking for XD thank you~!
tabulandia's avatar
tabulandiaHobbyist General Artist
Some helpful tips, danke.
Aerite's avatar
AeriteHobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you, this tutorial was very helpful.
kaseylsnow's avatar
kaseylsnowProfessional Digital Artist
Really good stuff here, next time someone asks me about color I'm just going to link them to this tutorial. xD Thanks for sharing!
Prototype-LQ's avatar
This is very useful,thank you)
benoibe's avatar
benoibeHobbyist Digital Artist
This is what I've been looking for! I am thrilled to see it was a DD! 

Thank you. I understand the parts of color theory. But the more I learn, the more I realize I don't know... I have been totally derailed in creating anything unique, bc I am clueless when to prefer cool vs warm colors and why. Especially when drawing in perspective. Your color tutorial doesn't just give the "what to do", it explains "why" so that I can make my own informed decisions. 
I love this site because of artists like you, who dont just show their creations, but also try to help others realize their potential! 
the-midnight-fairy's avatar
Please.. someone can help me?  I'm very confused.. everyone and even in Japanese magazines they  talk about a scheme color and how to pick up colors that match each others... but still i don't understand how to picking colors, based to that color weel...
I read this tutorial, but I have just confusion of colors and nothing else.

I'm doing a drawing and now finished lineart, I need to choose colors. I'm starting from the brown of hair.. but I still don't understand what colors match with brown better... there's tertiary colors, double color, 4 colors in the color weel... but how to actually use ? I dont even seen the brown I want in the color scheme, how can I know how to count to get the colors that match?



I 've read this (it says 'be careful to select   colors that match your brown"--- yes.. but how?

pronouncedyou.deviantart.com/a…


They explain about tertiary color, etc but still when I come to color my own drawing... I can't understand what color take . All that I know is that Ive decided the color of hair (light brown). All the rest, I dont have idea how to picking up the correct colors that give the drawing a nice coloring (because the perfect colors calculation before choose a color. I dont want to use casual colors)... I'm so confused...
See how they choose perfect colors?

sta.sh/07u5zegsk48

sta.sh/0xv6j9f6bpi

sta.sh/016684815jec
harrie5's avatar
harrie5Student General Artist
Hey there! The most important part of choosing colours  is using your eyes - studying theory can make it quicker to find the right colours, but it ultimately comes down to what looks pleasing to you.

Now, what pronouncedyou meant in their tutorial about matching colours to your browns is based on the tint of the brown.

Brown is really just a way of describing a dark, desaturated colour that could be found on this end of the spectrum
31.media.tumblr.com/4e71b05be6…

if you darken and desaturate the wheel, you'll see that they all become various shades of brown
31.media.tumblr.com/9201b1df4f…

Choosing colours to match your brown just means choosing a colour scheme type and choosing colours around that. You can see the different types and play around with the colour schemes using this site!
So, if we have ourselves a brown, we want to choose our scheme type. So for example, lets try a triadic scheme.  When we choose colours, we want to move the colour picker over to the areas that would make the triangle points and just pick different colours until they look kinda nice together.
We could do the same thing with an analogous scheme!

The thing you do want to avoid doing is keeping the colours at the same value and saturation, as that makes them more likely to clash. So if you move the picker around the wheel and the colours clash, move the picker around in the selector until they look nice together.

Play around with the colour scheme designer site so you can learn the different types of colour schemes, and then try them out in your own art! All they do is give you a rough idea as to where abouts on the wheel you want to choose your colours from.
the-midnight-fairy's avatar
That's amazing... I have to study and save what you said, because is very helpful! Thank you so so so much!! :D
the-midnight-fairy's avatar
I didn't understand nothing.... T______________T
DarlingMionette's avatar
DarlingMionetteProfessional Digital Artist
you're very welcome :)
wolfbud101's avatar
wolfbud101Hobbyist General Artist
Wow that's a lot take in.
But its very informings  
UsagiYogurt's avatar
UsagiYogurtProfessional General Artist
Quite helpful.
Ferions's avatar
FerionsHobbyist Artist
That is a must-read.... very useful!!!
anonymous's avatar
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