This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

Color explained

I've always been fascinated with color. If you've ever looked at a display of lipstick, or read that your computer screen displays millions of colors, you may think it's pretty complicated. Really it's not.

There are only three primary colors - blue, red and yellow. If someone is colorblind, they can't see these colors and no one could explain it to them. Go ahead, try to explain "blue", I'm waiting!

Every color you see is a combination of blue, red and yellow. Yes, even black and white. This is in "the real world" - not as we use technology to portray it on computers or in printing. Look around you, all of the colors you see are a mixture of those three primary colors. If you're lucky enough to see colors pass through a prism of a rainbow, you will see them separated out and mixed slightly between each other.

People who are colorblind can see things that we commonly think of as "color" - value. Go back and look at the display of lipstick "colors". Most of them are essentially the same color (hue) but different values, that is, shades of lightness and darkness. Adding and subtracting value from a color does not change it's color.

When you subtract color (hue) from an image you are left with value (grayscale). And you don't need color vision to watch and old black-and-white TV show, do you?

Color vision makes the world more visually delicious. And I'm glad I have it.