The Space Between My Peers: My Mental Color Wheel

The Space Between My Peers

From the bottom of the fashion food chain ...

Location: The Great Northwest

I'm a home-schooling, bible-believing SAHM with an annual clothing budget of about $500 American. The Space Between My Peers reveals my secret passion: analysis of the art and science of what to wear.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

My Mental Color Wheel

Remember kindergarten? No doubt you learned that there were three primary colors: red, blue, and yellow. And that any other color could be made by mixing these. Then when you got older you learned that black (or was it white?) was really not a color, but the absence of color. It seemed so simple.

A few years ago I signed up for a painting class. I didn't know the first thing about art, so I was pumped when I realized that I could make any color that I wanted. But it really wasn't that simple.

Now we are all adults and aware that when you purchase a color cartridge for your printer it contains three primary colors: magenta, cyan, and yellow. Close to those kindergarten primary colors, but a little different. It was in exploring this concept, and trying to set up my watercolor pallette, that I developed a working model of simple color theory.

I use a (mental) color wheel with twelve hues: a "cool" and a "warm" version of each primary and each secondary color. In other words, with each color I encounter (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, or purple) I decide if it is closer to the color on one side of it, or the other. (Of course, there are all manner of tints and shades as well.) Consequently, a blue will be either a green-blue (cyan) or a purple-blue (periwinkle). Here's an image that's pretty close to my mental one.

This works for me. And I realize now, in writing this post, that I have finally moved beyond the trauma of realizing that they taught me lies in kindergarten.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you. As a beginner at the scientific dressing category, this will help. I am printing off picture from the link. I plan to laminate it and tuck it into my wallet.

But first, I'll try to figure out where my hair, eye, and natural lip colors fit on the color wheel.

7:45 PM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

I'm glad that's helpful.

You'll probably find multiple colors in each of those.

Thanks for commenting!

7:48 PM  

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