by admin on October 13, 2012

hue and value (from COLOR STUDIES)

here’s where color theory gets complicated.  it’s kind of like math, but with words instead of numbers.  my little pea brain sputters and sparks trying to make sense of it all.  take this sentence from our text:  “the effect obtained when the value of a hue is opposite to its natural order is called discord….”  and this:  “light discords…provide the best highlights…the discord chosen should be based on the primary color closest to the object featuring the highlight.”  huh???

should one read such explanations word by word, reminding oneself of the definition of each term as it applies to the rest of the sentence?  it would take esme years to get through one chapter this way!  on the other hand, skimming over the paragraph to get the gist of it (my usual method) doesn’t work very well either (that’s why i gave up math in 11th grade).

sometimes hands-on exercises in class help.  but not always……

esme was finally able to understand a bit about the interaction between hue and value-(“the pure hues vary in value.  pure hue yellow, for example, has a lighter value than pure hue violet.  therefore, yellow and violet must be adjusted by the addition of black or white in order to be of equal value”).  she realized that when it comes to clothes, she likes herself in darker colors, especially purple/violets.  the lighter colors (e.g. yellow) do nothing for her.  both are apparently “pure” hues, but the yellow is “naturally” lighter than the violet.  to make them equal in “value” one would add black to the yellow, and white to the violet….is that right?

and this is just a tiny portion of the technical aspects of color.  we have chapters and chapters of similar material to understand!  esme can only assume that artists, interior designers, clothing designers etc. understand these concepts intuitively. they must look at a color or combination of colors and just think “that looks right” (or not).

twisting my brain,




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