Christian's Blog #2

An Introduction to Colour Theory 

Colour theory is an absolutely essential part of the design process, often we come across works that don’t reflect how a company wants their brand to feel, sometimes this is down to a poor colour choice.

Colour brings out emotions in people, they each portrait different feelings, for example, Blue is a very calming colour, it represents stability and trust, think the Halifax, NHS and PayPal logos, these brands want to convey that they are reliable and trustworthy. And at the other end of the spectrum, we have Orange which is more joyful, encouraging and creative, think Nickelodeon, Penguin Books, and SoundCloud.

I normally attempt to create logos in black and white, neutral colours that won’t affect my opinion on how well the concept holds together. When I’m happy I’d start to create a colour palette, experimenting with colour combinations.

As you will probably remember from school, the 3 primary colours are Red, Yellow and Blue. Then the secondary colours and made from mixing these.
Red + Yellow = Orange
Blue + Red = Purple
Yellow + Blue = Green

And then we have the Tertiary colours which are halfway between these,
Red + Purple = Magenta
Red + Orange = Vermillion
Blue + Purple = Violet
Blue + Green = Teal
Yellow + Orange = Amber
Yellow + Green = Chartreuse

A colour on its own might not be what you are after either, we have the 12 basic colours, put from these, we can make thousands more, if we take Magenta, we can create a tint by adding White, a Tone by adding Grey or create a shade by adding black.

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