Introduction to Studio Art Fundamentals
Introduction to Studio Art Fundamentals ART 111
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This 11 page Class Notes was uploaded by Isabell Rice on Wednesday October 28, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to ART 111 at Wake Forest University taught by Staff in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 11 views. For similar materials see /class/230715/art-111-wake-forest-university in Art at Wake Forest University.
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Date Created: 10/28/15
Color NATURE OF COLOR Source of Color Neutral Physical Properties of Color Hue Value Intensity Color Relationships Other Color Systems Warm and Cool Colors Simultaneous Contrast USES OF COLOR Plastic Quality of Color Color and Emotion Aesthetic Appeal of Color Tonality Color Balance Color Combination Uni ed Color Patterns Contrasting Color Patterns COLOR PROBLEMS THE VOCABULARY OF COLOR analogous colors Those colors that are closely related in hue They are usually adjacent to each other on the color wheel color The character of a surface that is the result of the response of vision to the wavelength of light re ected from that surface color tonality An orderly planning in terms of selection and arrangement of color schemes or color combinations involves not only hue but also value and intensity relationships color triad A group of three colors spaced an equal distance apart on the color wheel The twelvecolor wheel has a primary triad a second ary triad and two intermediate triads complementary colors Two colors that are directly opposite each other on the color wheel A primary color is complementary to a secondary color that is a mixture of the two remaining pri maries hue Used to designate the common name of a color and to indicate its position in the spectrum or on the color wheel Hue is determined by the spe ci c wavelength ofthe color in a ray of light intensity The saturation or strength of a color determined by the quality of light re ected from it A vivid color is of high intensity a dull color of low intensity local objective color The naturalistic color of an object as seen by the eye green grass blue sky red frre etc neutralized color A color that has been grayed or reduced in intensity by mixture with any of the neu trals or with a complementary color neutrals Surface hues that do not re ect any single wavelength of light but rather all of them at once A strong re ection of all color wavelengths will produce white When large amounts of light of all color wavelengths are re ected light grays will result when small amounts of light wavelengths are re ected dark grays will result The absence of all color wave lengths will produce black No single color is noticed only a sense of light or dark such as white gray or black pigments Color substances usually powdery in nature that are used with liquid vehicles to produce paint simultaneous contrast lntensifred contrast that results whenever two different colors come into direct contact spectrum The band of individual colors that results when a beam of light is broken into its compo nent wavelengths of huessplitcomplement A color and the two colors on either side of its complement subjective colors Colors chosen by the artist with out regard to the natural appearance of the object por trayed Subjective colors have nothing to do with objective reality except represent the expression of the individual artist value Value refers to the lightness or darkness of a color It indicates the quantity of light re ected NATURE OF COLOR Color is the element of form that arouses universal appreciation and the one to which we are the most sen sitive It instantly appeals to a child as well as to an adult even infants are more attracted to brightly col ored objects The average layperson who is frequently puzzled by what he or she calls quotmodernquot art usually finds its color exciting and attractive The layperson may question the use of distortions of shape but sel dom objects to the use of color provided that it is har monious in character In fact a work of art frequently can be appreciated for its color style alone Color is one of the most expressive elements because its quality affects our emotions directly and immediately When we view a work of art we do not have to rationalize what we are supposed to feel about color but have an immediate emotional reac tion to it Pleasing rhythms and harmonies of color satisfy our aesthetic desires We like certain combi nations of color and reject others In representational art color identifies objects and creates the effect of illusionistic space Color differs from the other ele ments in that it deals with certain scientific facts and principles that are exact and can easily be system atized We will examine the basic facts or character istics of color relationships to see how they function in giving form and meaning to the subject of an artist s work Source of Color Color begins with and is derived from light either natural or arti cial Where there is little light there is little color where the light is strong the color is likely to be particularly intense When the light is weak such as at dusk or dawn it is difficult to dis tinguish one color from another Under bright strong sunlight such as in tropical climates colors seem to take on additional intensity Every ray of light coming from the sun is composed of waves that vibrate at di erent speeds The sensation of color is aroused in the human mind by the way our sense of vision responds to the differ ent wavelengths of light that affect it This can be experimentally proven by observing a beam of light that passes through a triangularly shaped piece of glass prism and then re ects from a sheet of white paper The rays of light are bent or refracted as they pass through the glass at different angles according to their wavelength and are re ected from the white paper as different colors Our sense of vision then interprets these colors as individual stripes in a nar row band we call the spectrum The major colors easily distinguishable in this band are red orange yellow green blue indigo and violet The scientist uses the term indigo for the color the artist usually calls blueviolet These colors however blend grad ually so that we can see several intermediate colors between them fig 81 and plate 47 The colors of the spectrum are pure and rep resent the greatest intensity brightness possible If we could collect all ofthese spectrum colors and mix them in a reverse process from the one described in the previous paragraph we would again have white light When such colored rays of light are recom bined or mixed the system is called additive mm Plate 49b Secondary Traid number of intermediate colors actually is unlimit ed because a change 0 proportion in the amount of primary or secondary colors used will change the resultant hue In other words there is no one yellowgreen possible by mixing green and yel low If more yellow is used a different yellow green results than when more green is used plate 4 c To systematize color relationships the placed at the top The three secondary colors are placed between the primaries from which they are mixed An intermediate color is placed between each primary and each secondary color thus resulting in a twelvecolor wheel The hues of the colors change as we move around the color wheel because the wavelengths of the light rays that produce these colors change The closer together col ors a pear on the color wheel the closer their hue relationships the farther apart any two hues are the more contrasting they are in character The hues directly opposite each other afford the greatest con trast and are known as complementary colors see plate 53a NAng nun rum Rm Plate 49c Intermediate Colors Value A wide range of color tones can be produced by modifying one hue with the addition of the neu trals black or white This indicates that colors have characteristics other than hue The property of color known as value distinguishes between the lightness and darkness of colors or the quan tity of light a color re ects Many value steps can exist between the darkest and lightest appearance of any one hue To change the tone value of a pigment we must mix with it another pigment that is darker or lighter in character The only dark or light pigments available that would not also change the color39s hue are black and white All of the colors re ect a different quanti ty of light as well as a different wavelength A large amount of light is re ected from yellow whereas a small amount of light is re ected from violet Each color at its maximum intensity has a normal value that indicates the amount of light it rim l um lecl re ects It can however be made lighter or darker than normal by the addition of white or black as pre viously noted We should know the normal value of each of the colors in order to use them most effec tively This normal value can be most easily seen when the colors of the wheel are placed in relation ship to a scale of neutral values from black to white plate 51 lllghllghl Vello Yulluwromngc Light l Vauowgrccn CRUISE Lowllghr Grccn rx Red 391 High dmk Elm Redwold Dark Bluerviulel Viulm LewdHK Black Plate 51 Color Values This chart indicates the relative normal values of the hues at their maximum intensity purity or brilliance equally the resulting tone is a neutral gray diminishes as the value darkens We cannot change Consequently as a color loses its intensity it value without changing intensity although these two tends to approach or resemble grayThere are properties are not the same The third method of actually four ways of changing the intensity of changing intensity involves mixing a neutral gray of colors when mixing pigments Three of these the same value with the color The mixture is then a involve adding to the hue pigment a neutral that variation in intensity without a change in value is black white or gray As white is added to any hue the tone becomes lighter in value but it also loses its brightness or intensity of color In the same way when black is added to a hue the intensity Immsiu Change Elt or human Plate 523 These two diagrams illustrate the four means of changing the intensity of color 1 In the dia gram at left as white a neutral is added to bright red the value is changed but the resulting color is low ered in intensity 2 In the same way the addition of black to bright red creates a dark red closer to the neu tral scale because the intensity is changed 3 When a neutral gray is added to the spectrum color the inten sity is lowered but the value is neither raised nor lowered 4 The diagram on this page indicates change of intensity by adding to a color a little of its complement For instance by addi a small amount of green to red a gray red is produced In the same wa a small amount ofred added to green results in a gray green When the two colors are balanced not necessarily equal amounts the resulting mixture is a neutral gray Plate 53a Complementary Colors extreme contrast Color Relationships The successful use of color depends upon an understanding of color relationships A single color by itself has a certain character but that character may be greatly changed when the color is seen with other colors Colors might be closely related or they might be contrasting but the con trast can vary considerably in degree The great and two colors on either side of its complement results in a variation that produces less contrast plate 53b There is a shorter interval between colors and consequently less contrast when three colors that are spaced equally far apart on the color wheel are used together The rst group known as the primary triad consists of red yel low and blue The second group or secondary triad is composed of orange green and violet Plate 53b SplitComplementary Colors This example shows yellow and its split comple mentary colors redviolet and blueviolet on either side of yellow39s complement violet The contrast is more striking in the primary triad In the secondary triad although the interval between hues is the same the contrast is so er This effect probably occurs because in any pair of the triad there is a common color orange and green both contain yellow orange and violet both contain red and green and violet both contain blue Where colors appear neighboring hues always contain one common color that dominates the group analogous colors plates 53b and 53c Plate 53c Triadic Color Interval medium contrast Other Color Systems Humans perennial fascination with and conse quent analysis of color has resulted in the devel opment of a number of color systems One of the most successful of these systems was developed in the early 1900s by the American artist Albert Munsell Munsell s system showed the relation ships between different color tints and shades This system was an attempt to arrive at a specific nomenclature for the many varieties of hues that result from mixing different colors with each other or with the neutrals black white and gray American industry adopted the Munsell system in 1943 as its material standard for naming dif ferent colors The system was also adopted by the United States Bureau of Standards in Washington DC In the Munsell system the ve basic hues are red yellow green blue and purple The mix ture of any two of these colors that are adjacent on the color wheel is called an intermediate color For example the mixture of red and yellow is an intermediate color called redyellow The other intermediate hues are greenyellow blue green purpleblue and redpurple To clarify color relationships Munsell Orange Red Blue Vioch Plate 5 3 d relationships Analogous Colors close devised a threedimensional color system that classi fies the different shades or variations of colors according to the qualities of hue value and intensity or chroma His system is in the form of a tree The many different color tones are seen as transparent plastic vanes that extend from the center trunk like tree branches The center trunk is a scale of neutral tones that begin with black at the bottom and rise through grays to white at the top The color tone at the outer limit of each branch represents the brightest hue possible at each level of value plate 54 The most important part of the Munsell color system is the color notation which describes a color in terms of a letter and numeral formula The hue is indicated by the notation found on the inner circle of the color wheel fig 83 The value of the colors is indicated by the numbers on the central trunk shown in plate 54 The inten sity or chroma is shown by the numbers on the vanes that radiate from the trunk These value and intensity relationships are expressed by frac tions with the upper number representing the value and the lower number indicating the inten sity chroma For example 5Y8 12 is the nota tion for a bright yellow It is interesting to com pare the Munsell color wheel fig 83 with the one used in this book plate 50 Munsell places blue opposite yellowred and red opposite blue green while in this book we place blue opposite orange and red opposite green In another system Wilhelm Ostwald places blue opposite yellow Each system is designed for a particular purpose Munsell used his circular arrangement of color in accordance with certain strict rules for standard izing many industrially used colors Ostwald devised his system in relation to psychological harmony and order In this bookthe circular arrangement is based on a less complicated sub tractive system of artistpigmented colors Diametrically opposing colors that the artist uses should be complementary and when mixed should produce a gray This system of mixing color is known as the subtractive process because the second color when mixed with the first color subtracts or absorbs more light waves from a white light than the first color The British have published a standard color wheel titled quotPowder Pigments for Artists Usequot that is arranged like the wheel used in this bookSpace does not permit discussion of other color systems but a substan tial number of color theorists have explored the color field Among them are Newton Goethe Schopenhauer ME Chevreul Delacroix J C Maxwell Itten and Faber Birren Warm and C001 Colors All of the colors usually are thought of as belonging to one of two groups warm colors or cool colors Red orange and yellow usually are associated with the sun or fire and are considered warm Any colors containing blue such as green violet or bluegreen are associated with air sky and water and are called cool colors This quality of warmth or coolness in a color may be affected or even changed by the hues around or near it The artist may mix a color on a palette and then find that the color appears entirely different when in juxtaposi tion on the canvas with other colors Simultaneous Contrast The effect of one tone upon another is some times called the Rule of Simultaneous Contrast According to this rule whenever two different color tones come into direct contact the contrast intensifies the difference between them The effect is most noted of course when the colors are directly con trasting in hue but it occurs even if the colors have some degree of relationship For example a yellow green surrounded by green appears to be yellow whereas if it is surrounded by yellow it is more noticeably green The contrast can be in the charac teristics of intensity or value as well as in hue A grayed blue looks brighter if placed against a gray background it looks grayer or more neutralized against abright blue background The most obvious or strongest effect occurs when directly opposite or complementary hues are juxtaposed blue is brightest when seen next to orange and green is brightest when seen next to red When a warm tone is seen in simultaneous contrast to a cool tone the warm tone is warmer and the cool tone cooler A color always tends to bring out its complement in a neighboring color When a neutralized gray made up of two com plementary colors is placed next to a strong positive color it tends to take on a huethat is opposite to the positive color When a person wears a certain color in clothing the complementary color in the person s complexion is emphasizedAll of these changes in color feeling should make us realize that no one color should be used for its character alone but should be considered in relation to the other colors present For this reason it is better to develop a color composition all at once rather than try to finish one area completely before going on to another Only after understanding the basic facts of color and the effects of color relationships can we explore color s function as an element of form in composition from the advancing and receding characteristics of certain colors When placed upon a surface colors actually seem to have a spatial dimension For example a spot of red on a at surface seems to take a position in front of that surface a spot of blue similarly placed seems to sink back into the surface In general warm colors seem to advance and cool colors seem to recede The character of such effects however can be altered by differences in the value and or intensity of the color These spatial characteristics of color were first noted by the French artist Paul Cezanne in the latter part of the nineteenth century He admired the sparkling brilliancy of the Impressionist artists of the period but thought that their work had lost the solidity of earlier painting Consequently he began to experiment with expressing the bulk and weight of forms by modeling with color tones Previous to Cezanne39s experiments the traditional academic artist had modeled form by a change of values in monotone one color The artist then tinted these tones with a thin dry local color characteristic of the object being painted Cezanne discovered that a change of color on a form could serve the pur pose of a change of value and not lose the inten sity of expression He felt that the juicy richness of positive colors served to express the actual structure of a solid object Later contemporary artists realized that Cezanne39s advancing and receding colors could also create those backward and forward movements in space that give liveli ness and interest to the picture surface plate 57 Many abstract artists have used the relationships of balance and movement in space to give con tent meaning to a painting although no actual objects are represented Color has been used as just another means along with line value and texture to accomplish this purpose Color and Emotion A second function of color involves its ability to create mood to symbolize ideas and to express personal emotions Color itself as found upon the canvas can express amood or feeling although it is not descriptive of the objects repre sented Light bright colors make us feel happy and gay while cool dark or somber colors are generally depressing The different hues of the spectrum have different emotional impacts Psychologists have found that red is happy and exciting whereas blue is dignified sad or serene Also different values and intensities of the hues in a color tonality may have an effect on its feeling tone A decided value range strongly con trasting light or dark hues gives a color scheme vitality and directness closely related values and lowintensities suggest subtlety calmness and repose plates 58 and 59 We cannot escape the emotional effect of color because it appeals directly to our sens es Artists may also take advantage of the power of color to symbolize ideas thus making their work stronger in content or meaning Such ideas or abstract qualities as virtue loyalty honesty evil and cowardice are symbolized by the colors that have come to be traditionally associated with them In many cases we do not know the origin ofthese asso ciations but are nevertheless affected by them For example blue is associated with loyalty and honesty true blue red with danger yellow with cowardice yellow streak black with death green with life or hope white with purity or innocence and purple with royalty or wealth Some colors may have many di erent associations For example red may mean fire danger bravery sin passion or violent death The colors in a painting may enhance the impact of the subject matter by suggesting or recalling the meanings associated with them plate 60In addition to expressing meanings by association color might express an artist39s personal emotions Most Wy cre ative artists evolve a personal style of color tone that comes primarily not from the subject but from their feelings about the subject Albert Pinkham Ryder expressed what he felt about the sea in a very origi nal style of color John Marin s color is essentially suggestive in character with little expression of form or solidity see plate 28 It is frequently delicate and light in tone in keeping with the medium watercol or with which he works The color in the paintings of Vincent van Gogh is usually vivid hot intense and applied in snakelike ribbons of pigment His use of texture and color accounts for the intensely per sonal style of his work plate 61 The French artist Renoir used a luminous shimmering color in his painting of human esh so that his nudes have a glow that is not actually present in the human figure The emotional approach to color appealed particular ly to the expressionistic painter who used it to create an entirely subjective treatment having nothing to do with objective reality Aesthetic Appeal of Color Tonality The nal function of color involves its ability to evoke in the observer sensations of pleasure because of its wellordered system of color tonali ty plate 62 This appeal refers to the sense of satisfaction we derive from seeing a well designed rug or drapery material whose color combination is harmonious The same appeal can be found in a purely nonobjective painting There are no exact rules for arriving at pleasing effects in color relationships but there are some guiding principles We can develop the ability to create pleasing color by studying and analyzing color schemes that appeal to us This study should be followed by experiment and practice in color organization The problem is first the selection of hues to be used together in a composition and second their arrangement in the pictorial field in the proper amounts for color balance No color is impor tant in itself but is always seen on the picture surface in a dynamic interaction with the other colors pres ent Combinations and arrangements of color are for the purpose of expressing content or meaning conse quently any arrangement ought to have a definite feeling tone In talking about pleasing color we must realize that there can be brutal color combinations as well as ref1ned ones These brutal combinations are satisfying in the sense that they accomplish the artist39s purpose of exciting us rather than having a quieting effect Some of the German expressionist painters have proven that these brutal clashing color schemes can have definite aesthetic value when they are done in a purposeful manner plate 63
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