How to Use Different Colors?

Posted by | March 4, 2012 | 0 Comments

To use the color wheel and the chart below we need to know these definitions:

  • Core Color:  The dominant color in a color scheme.  It’s the color of the principal item in your outfit like your suit or a dress shirt.

  • Accent Colors:  The second and sometimes third colors used in a color scheme.  The accent colors may be complementary, triad, analogous or neutral.

Complementary colors:  Colors directly opposite each other in the color spectrum or wheel.  Blue is opposite of orange on the color wheel.  That is why gold, rust and brown compliment shades of blue.  Here’s an example of an outfit:  navy trousers (blue) with a rust dress shirt (orange).

You can get  darken version (shape) of a color by adding its complimentary color or the color of black.


 Triad colors:  Three hues equally spaced on the color wheel.  When you want a combination that is colorful and yet balanced, a triad color scheme might be the way to go.  The first or primary triad colors in the color wheel are red, blue and yellow.  Here’s an example of an outfit: a navy suit (blue), pale yellow shirt (yellow) and burgundy tie (red).

Analogous colors: Colors, which are next to each other on the color wheel, go well together, such as blue pants, a blue-green shirt and a green jacket.


Neutral colors: Neutral colors include beige, ivory, taupe, black, gray, and white and sometimes brown.  Neutral usually means without color, and these colors don’t usually show up on the color wheel.

Be Sociable, Share!
Filed Under: Painting Basics

Leave a Reply