Colour, in theory

Colour, in theory

I am fascinated by colour. I enjoyed studying colour theory in college. I loved learning about primary and secondary colours. It was gratifying to make charts of mixed paints to see the varying degrees of complimentary or neutralized colours. Even years later, I think about colour and the way we perceive it. I ponder arguments I have had with people about the colour of an item or wall paint. It has made me wonder about the way we see colour. I have since learn there are studies out there about how, as individuals, we perceive colour differently. 

I contemplate a great deal about the way our eyes and our brain determine colour. What I mean is, the difference between what we think we see compared to what we really see . For example, I  worked on a tapestry series over several weeks in January. While I was weaving I would look at my reference landscape photograph and see ice. In my head know ice is white, but if I took the image out of context of being ice and looked at it just for its colour, I noticed that there was a myriad of colours present. There was gray, lavender, periwinkle, light blue, and little striates of white. it was a combination of several colours that created "white". It was the same when I looked at the branches or the grass. My brain told me the branches were gray, but in fact they were gray, and brown, and black and some even exhibited bits of green. It was the combination of colour that gave the hue of gray. It was again true for the grass. The stalks were a blend of gold and brown and beige. 

After producing these tapestries, I realized the mixtures of colours used to reproduce the colours in the photographs are what I see when I look at the ice and  branches and water and sky. I wonder how another person sees these photographs and what colours they would have chosen to represent them in the tapestries. 

 It would be an interesting experiment to ask another weaver, or even a painter to reproduce the series I made; to see what blend of colours they come up with to make the white of ice, and the gray of branches, the blue of water and everything in between.

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