I’m No Einstein but…..

i have a theory about relativity too: the relativity of color.  It deals with what happens to a color when it is placed next to, or on top of another one. Our perception of a given color will change depending on the colors surrounding it. (No, I didn’t invent this theory. I just like having fun with it.)

A palette (a set of colors, by definition) can be composed of as few as two colors, and two colors side by side automatically have a relationship, just like people. Here’s an illustration: Two people sitting on a bus bench have a relationship. They are either acquainted, or are strangers. They either know each other or don’t.  Now picture our bus carrying colors, not people. If we have two colors in the same blue/green color family, they are usually harmonious. Along comes a “stranger” from a different color family and now we have some new chemistry going on. The introduction of a new color to a set is suddenly causing us to pay more attention to the way these colors relate to each other. A new dynamic, a new tension perhaps, is on the scene.
Yesterday I found a color palette that intrigued me. (See previous post.) It was mostly blue/green with an accent of warm brown. Today I decided to add a red or two as a potential accent color. Suddenly my little palette is practically jumping off the page with energy. All the other colors are affected,  and some seem to be in near conflict with the reds while others just allow them to blend right in.
If you think of your next color palette as a group of travelers on a bus, don’t be surprised if you have to throw one or two off at the next stop! Colors relate to one another as soon as they get in close proximity, and if harmony is not in the picture, a little trouble may ensue. Finally, if the bus is traveling at the speed of light… well, then it is time to call in Mr. Einstein.

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One Response to “I’m No Einstein but…..”

  1. amanda Says:

    i love this post!! thank you!!

    Like

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