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Sunday, March 25, 2018

Try a No Fail Color Scheme for Landscapes

'Dancing with the Light'         18x24         pastel        ©Karen Margulis
available $400
"Complementary vibrations bring a subject to life." Nita Leland
With so many color schemes available to explore it can be hard to decide which one to use and when to use it. Typically I don't begin a painting with a specific color scheme in mind. I choose my palette based upon the landscape I am painting ....I look at the local colors and decide what colors go well with these local colors. It is an intuitive process but when I evaluate my paintings I find that many times I am using an Analogous Complementary color scheme. It just naturally works well for a landscape painting. I call it the No Fail color scheme for a landscape painting. Let's explore this scheme further.

What is an Analogous Complementary scheme? You select a set of analogous colors (a dominant color and the next door neighbors) and then use the complement of one of those colors. This way you have the harmony of the analogous colors with the punch and vibration of the complement. 
Remember the analogous poppy painting with pink background that I posted this week? It was a bit blah....too much of the same with no real color contrast. I redid this poppy painting this time introducing the complement to red/red orange which on the Munsell system is blue green. Much more exciting!

Note: I used the Analogous Color Wheel (ACW) to help me decide on the complement and discords. You can use a traditional triadic color wheel but be aware that the complements will be different. The ACW makes it easy to see complements and discords on a Munsell system. The Color Harmony Wheel is another color wheel based on the Munsell system that works the same way as the ACW.

Using a strict analogous color scheme
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1 comment:

robertsloan2art said...

Interesting. I love it, always like complementary contrasts. Beautiful poppies as always!