So today, we are talking about colour harmony. This simply means colours that look AMAZING together. And since colour is my thing, I just love talking about this topic.
Colour harmony is key to visually engaging people, and since we are a generation of hyper-visual people, learning how to use colour effectively will help you massively. This can be applied to all manner of contexts, whether you are dressing to impress, or putting some graphics together for your blog.
First things first: if your colour palette is too samey and bland, the human eye will become disengaged and you lose the viewer’s attention, but equally, if your colours are too crazy and overdone, the human eye struggles to engage with all the chaos. Your viewer will look away. That’s why we look for harmony.
I have explored 3 different formulas to achieve colour harmony by using the colour wheel. These formulas are called complementary, analogous and triadic.
Complementary colours are directly opposite one another on the colour wheel, for example in this image, we have red-orange opposite blue-green. When paired together, they look really vivid and have loads of contrast. It can look a little crazy if you go over the top with it, but I think the key is to make your colour palette well-balanced, perhaps choosing your main colour and then adding a pop of the opposite colour.
Analogous colours are found next to one another on the colour wheel. They’re easy to match up, and are really pleasing to the eye. This particular colour palette feel so calming, because there is a good colour balance. The blue-green is the main colour, supported by the blue-violet and dark blue, with that lovely pop of mustard. Watch out for choosing colours that are TOO similar, as they can get a bit lost otherwise.
I love this colour palette – I just think it works. The colour palettes found by using the triadic formula are absolutely my favourites. You get a nice mix, as the colours are evenly spaced throughout the colour wheel. In this lovely outfit from J Crew Kids, the neon pink is the main colour, which could potentially look a bit OTT, but supported by the faded orange and that little accent of blue-grey, it makes for a vibrant, playful colour palette.
You have now learnt the very basics of colour theory! I do encourage you to try these out and experiment for yourself on these, as colour is such a lot of fun. I have enjoyed doing these two colour theory posts so much that I plan on sharing colour-related posts every now and then in the future!
Which formula is your favourite: complementary, analogous or triadic? I’d LOVE to hear from you guys!