Secondary colors What are they

Secondary colors: What are they?

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The huge range of colors that exist gives many options when painting pictures, homes, and other art projects. Also, to choose the desired hue, it is important to take into account the groups of colors that exist. That way, you will know whether to opt for a primary, secondary, or tertiary color. Depending on this choice, you will have to follow different procedures to obtain them.

Primary colors are essential to creating secondary and tertiary colors, but those that make up the second group are often doubted. What are they? How many are there? If you are interested in knowing what secondary colors are and how they can be made with paint, we recommend reading this article.

What are the secondary colors?

Secondary colors are those shades from the mixture of primary colors (yellow, red, and blue). To create the secondary colors it is necessary to mix the same amount of the primary colors, as only then will the result obtained be considered as part of this group.

The main difference between primary and secondary colors is that the former cannot be achieved using other shades. The latter, as mentioned above, is obtained by mixing equal parts of the primary colors.

For more information about the primary colors in the different models that exist, do not miss this other article.

Subtractive and additive color model

Among the different categories in which colors can be pigeonholed, there is also the one that divides pigments based on whether they manage to absorb light or reflect it. Mixing a sufficient quantity to completely cover the luminosity, you will be able to create black, which acquires the name of a subtractive model. It removes the properties by which light is reflected.

On the other hand, there are the pigments that allow light waves to be reflected and that both the eyes and the brain interpret as color. These tones have different waves and, in comparison with the subtractive model, they acquire the name of the additive model, since all the colors with the ability to reflect light waves are added to it. The result of this pigment overlap is white.

As with primaries, the subtractive (black) and additive (white) model is useful for obtaining secondary colors. It all depends on the amount of each pigment used and its ability to absorb or reflect light.

What are the secondary colors – classification

Considering that it depends on mixing two primary colors (50% of each) in equal parts, you can get several secondary colors. Depending on the different combinations, you will get one or the other, but as a general rule, they can be divided into three large groups:

Orange: it is the color resulting from the mixture of yellow and red (which you can substitute for magenta since it is a fuchsia red). Use the same amount of both shades to get the most balanced orange.

Green: it is the result of the combination of yellow and blue (which you can exchange for cyan, that is, an intense turquoise color).

Violet: The mixture of blue and red results in violet. You will also achieve this by combining magenta and cyan.

How to make secondary colors with paint

After knowing what the secondary colors are, the final step to using them correctly for the artistic project that you are going to carry out is knowing how to obtain them with paint.

Gather all the cans of paint that you have bought (the primary colors) and add the amount that you consider appropriate, but in equal parts, of each color in a palette. If you use brushes, try to clean them after each mix to alter the final results.

They are the base with which you will work since, without them, you will not be able to get the different tones.

Combine blue and yellow in equal parts to achieve green. Depending on the greenish tones you want, you should add more color or another (closer to blue or yellow).

As with green, you will have to add more of the first or second to obtain a tighter tone than you need.

By introducing black and white in small amounts, you can obtain a greater variety of tones and add or reduce the intensity to the rest of the colors.

If you do not use the colors you have made immediately, you will have to store them in different containers so that they are not distorted or faded.