These resources are sure to lay the framework for a positively eye-catching work of art — full of bold and nuanced color alike.
I still remember first learning about color theory in my fifth-grade art class. The concept of light waves; the spectrum; primary, secondary, and tertiary color — it was all rather enchanting. What once had been a random act of trial and error had now become a whole new world of methodical experimentation. I felt equipped to mix my paints with a sense of purpose — and a lot less of that accidental muddy brown.
The Chiaroscuro of Color
There is the science of color mixing based on a solid understanding of hue, chroma, value, and temperature. And then there is the art of it all — the instinctual and interpretive approach to creating a truly stunning piece of artwork. If you’ll excuse the mixed metaphors (and that unintended pun), color mixing is quite like chiaroscuro in this way; there is a balance between know-how and intuition involved. But like Carol Z. Brody has said about intuitive painting, “truly feeling comfortable working this way requires knowledge of the components of a good painting” — form, balance, contrast, composition, and, of course, color.
Below you’ll find a compilation of our very best articles and videos, all about demystifying color theory and getting this color-mixing thing down pat. From art demos and color palette guides to in-depth videos and more, this color mixing guide is sure to lay the framework for a positively eye-catching work of art. Happy (and colorful) creating, friends!
- How to Speak the Language of Color
- The Importance of Color Mixing for Interesting Paintings
- 7 Secrets of Color Mixing for the Contemporary Painter
- Acrylic Color Essentials from Chris Cozen
- 4 Color Combination Ideas For The Perfect Green
- Color Mixing for Acrylic: How to Master Shades of Green
- What Colors Make Gray? | Color Mixing with the Primary Colors
- Great Methods for Color Mixing Whites
- How to Choose the Right Color Schemes
- Color Palettes for Winter Landscape Paintings
- You Don’t Want to Miss Out on These 6 Color Palettes
- Calculating Your Color Options
- Oil Palettes for Landscapes and Figures
- How to Achieve Brilliant Color in Pastel
- Surprising and Fun Ways to Incorporate Color into Your Sketchbook
- Three-Step Watercolor Value Study
And to take your knowledge of color mixing to the next level (and beyond), here are a handful of videos you can purchase for download, or stream immediately if you are an Artists Network Member!
- The Secret to Oil Painting with Light & Color with Michael Chesley Johnson
- Acrylic Painting Color Techniques, Fast, Loose and Bold
- Color: Landscape Painting Techniques for Success
- Pastel Painting Master Class: Color for Landscapes
- Nancy Reyner’s Perfect Color Mixing