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WPI Technical Theatre Handbook: Primary, Secondary and Complementary Colors of Light
 
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Primary, Secondary and Complementary Colors of Light

Almost everyone understands the concepts of the primary colors as they pertain to pigments. Red, yellow and blue are the primary pigment colors. Mixing yellow and blue yields green, blue and red yields magenta, etc. Light behaves in a similar fashion, though it has a different set of primary colors. Red, green and blue are the primary colors of light. Figure n depicts the primary and secondary colors of light. This figure also shows what are known as complementary colors -- colors that are opposite from one another in their makeup. For example, pure blue is the complement of pure amber. Pure blue is made up of just blue, while amber is made up of only the opposite colors, red and green. Figure 5.9 depicts the primary and secondary colors as well as indicating those which are complementary.

Figure 5.9: Primary and secondary colors of light. Red, green and blue make up the primaries, while the other colors depicted are secondary. Colors on opposite ends of arrows are complementary.
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next up previous contents index
Next: Light Mixing Up: Color Previous: Color Theory   Contents   Index
Steve Richardson 2000-07-06

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