There are three primary colors: red, yellow and blue. The mixture of these three forms the foundation for all other colors. Three primary colors are combined to form the three secondary colors: orange, green and purple. These are also known as complementary colors.
Contrasting colors are those that face each other on the color wheel. The produce bold tones, such as The University of Michigan color scheme of Maize and Blue. Tertiary colors are created when a primary and a secondary color are combined. These create harmonious soft color schemes.
Photo 1 is a picture taken in full daylight at Disneyworld Epcot Center in Orlando. The colors are all primary and secondary colors. The full daylight allows the picture to have a high contrast. Yet, the reason that picture can be high contrast and pleasing to the eye is that all of the colors are primary and secondary colors. Thus, high contrast and complementing schemes are working to please the eye.
Photo 2 is taken inside the building depicted in the Epcot Center building from above. My friend Sarah is at the center of the frame. She has skin tones, is wearing pink, and has a neutral black hair color. She is surrounded by complementary and primary colors on the color wheel. From left to right these are green, yellow, orange, pink and red. There are no contrasting colors. Thus, the picture seems soft and warm.
There is a close dividing line between bold and visually jarring colors. I scoured the Net for evidence of some fashion disasters. I didn't have to look very far. Photo 3: 1980 California High School Prom Photo is not just close to the line, it is onto another field.
I don't remember the electric and powder blue tuxedo being popular in 1980. I thought that it was just something that people wore on television. Apparently, not so. In any case, don't look at these characters, look at the brown carpet and wallpaper; contrast that color and pattern against the ruffled tuxedos. It is no wonder their dates are not in this photo.
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