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VOCABULARY:  click links for detailed glossary page:

  • COLOR WHEEL: a circular chart that shows a color's relationship to other colors

  • PRIMARY COLORS: The three basic pigment colors - red, yellow, blue - from which all other colors can be produced.

  • SECONDARY COLORS: colors formed by mixing the primary colors; producing green, orange and purple

  • TERTIARY COLORS: colors formed by mixing equal parts of a primary and a secondary color.  Also called intermediate colors.

  • COOL COLORS: restful colors like purple, blue and green that tend to recede from the viewer

  • WARM COLORS: stimulating colors like reds, oranges, and yellows that tend to advance toward the viewer

  • NEUTRAL COLORS: colors such as black, white, gray, brown and beige sometimes called "earth tones"

  • COMPLEMENTARY COLOR: Colors that are opposite on the color wheel like red and green; they intensify each other with high contrast

  • SPLIT-COMPLEMENTARY: a variation of complementary color that uses the two colors adjacent to its complement

  • ANALOGOUS COLORS: Any two or more colors that are next to each other on the color wheel and are closely related

  • MONOCHROMATIC COLORS: A single color hue in varying tints and shades

  • ACHROMATIC: colors having no chroma - black, white and grays

  • HUE: The name of any color as found in its pure state in the spectrum or rainbow.

  • SATURATION: The purity of a color; it's intensity.

  • VALUE: Relative lightness or darkness with or without the presence of hue.

  • INTENSITY: The strength or purity of a color; also referred to as saturation.

  • TINT: A color with white added to make it lighter.

  • SHADE: A color with black added to make it darker.

  • TONE: A color with grey added to reduce its saturation or intensity

  • RGB: Additive colors primaries; projected red, green and blue light combine to produce the full spectrum of colors.

  • CMYK: Subtractive primaries; a 4-color process printing using cyan, magenta, yellow, and black combined to reproduce full color.

  • ADDITIVE COLOR: Color reproduction model usually uses red, green and blue LIGHT to produce the other colors

  • SUBTRACTIVE COLOR: Color reproduction model by mixing of paints, dyes, inks, and natural colorants to create a full range of colors.

  • SPOT COLOR: In offset printing, any color generated by an ink (pure or mixed) that is printed using a single run.

  • PROCESS COLOR: a method of producing full-color printing by separating an image into four different colors; Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black (CMYK) which are overlaid during printing.

  • PMS: Pantone Matching System; a widely used method of specifying spot color by means of numbered swatches