Color Language

DUDES! Here are frequently used terms in the shop, so together we can expand *how* we are talking about color. I will add to this as more terms come up. These are by no means dictionary definitions, just my language of how I communicate about color in general terms. 

Hue: another word for color. This can be broad (red, blue, gold) or localized (honey, toffee, ochre)

Value: how light or dark a color is (baby blue vs royal blue). We divide things here between "ultra pale" "pale" "midtone" or "medium value" "dark" "super dark" and "darkest." Sometimes I also refer to a value as "deep in value" or "light in value"

Temperature: The warmth or coolness of a hue. A warm red would be nearer to orange (think flame-y warmth!) and a cool red would be nearer to purple (Brrr!) I use this often to further explain hues and where they sit. 

Chroma: the *amount* of color, a color has. For example, a wheat yellow would be low-chroma, whereas a canary yellow would be high-chroma. This often is determined by how "neutralized" a color is. Neutralized colors are often lower chroma, where pure colors are higher chroma. 

Neutralized: here this refers to a color whose intensity I cut with a black or brown to "flatten" a color. Sometimes I will also cross the color wheel to arrive at a neutralized color. So it could be a green, with the edge taken off, like Nicotine Wish. 

Intensity/key: This can often be confused with chroma (and is sometimes used interchangeably), but it is a little different. Where Chroma tends to refer to a colors purity of hue; Intensity or "Key" refers almost to the synthetic nature of a hue. For example, a carnation pink is lower key than a hot pink. At a very pale value, carnation pink will lose lose its intensity quickly and lean more toward a neutral, where hot pink will remain really glowy even at a light value. It won't lose its punch. 

Staple Neutral: This is how I refer to mixed grays and colors I feel are neither warm or cool. For clarity's sake I try to limit the use of this term to browns, greys, and blacks. But at a light value, low-chroma colors can fall into this category (ie, the entire Calm Palette). Staple Neutral is a searchable term here and will lead you to great main colors for colorwork. Also great for daily wear.. Staple Neutrals are a makers bread-and-butter, if you will. 

Luminousity: This term refers to the "glowy-ness" of a deep value color. These are colors that make my eye buzz, but they usually happen in shadow. This is a painting term, that I try to spill over into my dye work. Rather than adding black to a color to make it darker, I will bolster colors with a nearby hue that will bring a little tension to the color. 

Compound Color: Sometimes I will mix a color and "emphasize" it by adding nearby colors on the color wheel. For example, if I want to make a really true, charged blue, maybe I will mix together a few similar blues to create a more complex and truer hue. (Think the entire cool side of Coastal Palette). By pulling back and forth on warm blue and cool blue dyes, I can create a more dimensional color. Compound Colors I often refer to as being "punchy" colors.