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The Magic of Complimentary Colours


Colour is an important aspect, if not the most important aspect of design, and can influence the meaning of your art and what you can make the viewer feel emotion. By understanding colour theory, you can be more intentional in creating visuals that make an impact.


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How to mix, make and use Complimentary Colours, Colour Schemes, Online Apps and more.

Complementary colours are pairs of colours that contrast with each other more than any other colour, and when placed side-by-side make each other look brighter.

Art Quote

“Color makes its impact from contrasts rather than from its inherent qualities….the primary colours seem more brilliant when they are in contrast with their complementary colours.”

Claude Monet

  • Complementary Colors that are opposite each other on the colour wheel.
  • They are pairs of colours based on different wavelengths.
  • Example: red and green
  • Example: Traffic lights are high contract complementaries and one secondary.
  • The high contrast of complementary colours creates a vibrant look, especially when used at full saturation.
The negative side of mixing complementaries
  • The negative side of mixing complementaries is then when mixed to a 50 – 50 ratio they will balance each other out and create dull grey.



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Author: LifeArt School

Leonie has been painting for 30 years. she has a degree in Art as well as a Teaching diploma. Her dream has always been to help other reach their full potential, in art as well as in daily life. LifeArt School has been in operation since 2004 and has managed to help various students become full time artists. Leonie is also a well know local and international artist. She paints three days a week and her work is available in various galleries.

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