Purple is a beautiful color that is often associated with royalty, luxury, and elegance. However, finding the right combination of colors to create the perfect shade of purple can be tricky. In this article, we will explore some tips and tricks for making purple, including the science behind how color mixing works and different ways to achieve the shade you desire.
Color Mixing Basics
Before we dive into the specific tips and tricks for making purple, it’s important to understand the basics of color mixing. The three primary colors of light are red, blue, and green. When mixed together in equal amounts, they create white light.
In contrast, the three primary colors of pigment are red, yellow, and blue. When mixed together in equal amounts, they create black. This is because pigments absorb light, rather than emitting it like colored light.
Secondary colors are created by mixing two primary colors together. For example, blue and red make purple. Tertiary colors are created by mixing a secondary color with a primary color. For example, blue-violet is a tertiary color made by mixing blue and purple.
Choosing Your Base Colors
When making purple, you will need to start with a base color. The two most common options are red and blue.
Using Red as a Base
To create a warm, reddish-purple, start with a base of red. Use a tiny bit of blue to darken the red and adjust the shade to your desired intensity. This will create a deep, rich purple that leans towards red.
Using Blue as a Base
To create a cool, blue-toned purple, start with a base of blue. Add a touch of red to the mix to create a more balanced, less “neon” color. You can also add some white to the mix to create a lighter, pastel shade.
Experiment with Your Mixes
The key to making the perfect shade of purple is experimentation. Play around with different ratios of red and blue until you find the shade that you love. Keep in mind that a little bit of one color can go a long way!
Other Tips and Tricks
Mixing Complementary Colors
If you’re feeling adventurous, try mixing complementary colors to create purple. Complementary colors are opposites on the color wheel, which means that when mixed together, they create a neutral grey or brown color. The complementary color of purple is yellow. Mixing equal amounts of purple and yellow will create a brownish shade of purple. You can also experiment with adding other colors to the mix, such as green or orange, to create unique shades of purple.
Using Different Shades of Red and Blue
Don’t limit yourself to just one shade of red or blue. Experiment with different shades and hues to create more complex shades of purple. For example, a mixture of magenta (a reddish-pink color) and cobalt blue will create a bright, vibrant purple.
Using Different Mediums
Finally, keep in mind that different mediums may require different techniques for creating purple. For example, if you’re painting with watercolors, you may need to create a purple hue by layering different colors rather than mixing them directly.
Creating the perfect shade of purple can be a fun and rewarding experience. By understanding the basics of color mixing and experimenting with different base colors and techniques, you can create a wide range of beautiful purples that are perfect for any project.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What colors make purple? The two primary colors that make purple are red and blue.
- Can you mix other colors to create purple? Yes, you can mix complementary colors (opposites on the color wheel), such as purple and yellow, to create brownish shades of purple, or mix different shades of red and blue to create more complex purples.
- What is the best way to create a deep, rich purple? Start with a base of red and mix in a small amount of blue until you achieve the desired shade.
- What is the best way to create a light, pastel purple? Start with a base of blue and mix in a small amount of pink or white until you achieve the desired shade.
- What medium is best for creating purple? Different mediums may require different techniques for creating purple. For example, watercolors may require layering different colors to achieve the desired hue.
Brody, D. (2003). Vector Basic Training: A Systematic Creative Process for Building Precision Vector Artwork (1st ed.). New Riders.
Color Matters. (n.d.). Color Basics. Retrieved March 15, 2021, from https://www.colormatters.com/color-and-design/basic-color-theory
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