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Introduction to Color Theory: A Workshop


Painters, graphic and fashion designers, decorators, anyone working in the visual realm professionally or for fun knows that color knowledge is a vital part of the process. Some color choices made on the basis of “I just like the way it looks” can be very successful, but an understanding and knowledge of the dimensions of color and how it works can put you in control of results you want. Through painting and cut paper exercises students learn the perceptual properties of color: hue, intensity, chroma and value.

We will discuss the different color systems such as RGB, CMYK and the standard painter’s color wheel. Discover how color affects mood, creates depth, rhythm and movement in painting, fashion, environment or artifact. The course considers theory and science of color perception from Renaissance painters, 18th century explorations of Newton and Goethe, through the impressionists and  significant contributions of  Bauhaus theorists like Johannes Itten and Joseph Albers. Student projects examine the shifting relationships of color perception.The course also covers the limitations of pigments, the pitfalls of color mixing and an intelligent strategy for choosing which colors to buy to get a complete palette. 

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