Just for Fun: Primary Color Schemes

Working with the primaries provides a generous range of mixtures and juxtapositions. A primary color scheme is challenging to control, but the availability of all primaries (and through mixture, secondaries) facilitates a true full-palette mixing range.

A measure of skill is required to maintain balance between three colors with such variation in home value and maximum chroma. One strategy is to reduce overall contrast, to help place the primaries in a more similar light/dark range. Alternately, for a high contrast composition, directly juxtapose blues, reds and yellows against each other or against whites and blacks.

Painting by Renoir with strong value contrasts achieved by juxtaposing blue against white and yellow

Self portrait by Julio Romero de Torres, using mid-value neutrals to reduce value contrast and emphasize intensity of color

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