Tutorial on Creative Color Manipulations

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Creative color manipulations can really take a good piece of artwork and turn it into a great one. Get a tutorial on creative color manipulations with help from a graphic designer and illustrator in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Art & Drawing Tips
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Video Transcript

Hi everyone, this is Gene. I'm a graphic designer and illustrator. I've been working in the industry for about 15 years, and today I'm gonna have a little bit of a tutorial on creative color manipulations. So, let's jump right in and see some of the things that you can do creatively with color. So let's talk about the different colors. When you start out a painting, you should have in mind an idea of which colors you want to use. Now, how do you decide which colors to use? Obviously, your subject matter, if you're painting an image of a fast food restaurant, you wanna make sure that you're golden arches are gold. Obviously, if you're painting a sky, and it's mid-afternoon, the sky's gonna be blue, ocean blue, you know so certain subject matter will lend itself to the different colors. But you can take some liberties in some of those areas. In the sky for example, sky has many different colors. If you're in Alaska, and you're looking at the Northern Lights, the sky has a couple of different yellows and some reds in there, some greens. Dawn, dusk, we have different colors. Let's talk about that a little bit. So, blues are blues and your greens, and even purples, are considered your cool colors. And the reason their considered cool is because everything that is associated with cold in your mind, is also associated with these colors. So, the vast ocean is blue. It's very cool blue, so we're gonna use blue for the ocean. In the wintertime, water reflects blue, because the sky is blue. So, the snow has a certain blue reflection. The same time fire, is red, yellow and oranges, unless you get into certain crazy chemicals. So, those are considered the warm colors. The reds and the yellows and the oranges are considered warm colors. So, if you want a warmer mood, which will also induce hunger in your subject, which is why fast food restaurants pretty much every fast food restaurant is some combination of red and yellow in their logo, red and or yellow. Those are the warm colors. And just sort of decide ahead of time what sort of painting you're gonna be doing. Is it gonna be cool, is it gonna be warm? Another thing to keep in mind is, you want to use your palette area, which in this case would be this space over here, to get an idea of how the colors are going to look together. So here I put an orange next to a little bit of a bluish-green that I mixed up. So you'll know what they're gonna look like when they're next to each other in your painting. You're also gonna wanna know this ahead of time so that you know, okay, I have to completely finish this area of the painting, because if I mix a blue and yellow and they're wet, you'll see it turns sort of like a muddy brown color, and you definitely don't want that in your painting. So, when you're manipulating the colors on your canvas, make sure that any of the darker colors have dried, and well any of the lighter colors, any color that you're going to paint over, and also make sure when you're using water colors that you paint a darker color over a light color, because once you already have the dark color down, the light color is just not going to show up over top of that. So, use your canvas a little bit ahead of time, use your palette to just make your color decision before you actually start the painting, and this will make your life a lot easier when you're trying to manipulate the color on the painting itself. Alright, so that's probably should give you a little bit of a mix of some of the things that you can do with color that's a little bit creative, something more than just, you know, applying color to a sheet of paper. And, you know, experiment around with it a little bit, don't be afraid to play around. If you have any questions, please let us know, and we'll see you next time.


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