The Colour Wheel Explained

You might have learned the basic colour wheel at school, but as an artist, every colour you create is a result of combinations of shades on the colour wheel. 

How it works…

Firstly, you have your primary colours.

  • red
  • blue
  • yellow

Each combination of primary colours makes a secondary colour.

  • red + blue = violet
  • blue + yellow = green
  • red + yellow = orange

Each combination of primary and secondary colours makes a tertiary colour.

  • red +violet = red violet
  • red + orange = red orange
  • blue + violet = blue violet
  • blue + green = blue green
  • yellow + green = yellow green
  • yellow + orange = yellow orange

Note that complementary opposite colours on the colour wheel combine to make shades of brown.

  • red + green = brown
  • yellow + violet = brown
  • blue + orange = brown

 

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