Color theory is a collection of guidelines and rules that are used by designers to communicate with users through appealing color schemes. To ensure the best colors are selected every time, designers will typically use the color wheel, as well as referring to an expansive collection of knowledge regarding culture, psychology, and human optical ability. If you would like to learn more about color theory, there are a lot of great books out there on the matter. This includes the following:
- Interaction of Color: 50th Anniversary Edition -This is my favorite book, so we simply cannot talk about color theory without mentioning this book. Written by Josef Albers, a canonical artist, the book is deemed one of the most significant books on color that has ever been written. Throughout the book, there are a number of exercises that will help you to test your knowledge and ensure you are on the right track.
- The Secret Lives of Color – There is only one place to begin, and that is with this interesting book from Kassia St. Clair. This book is split up into a number of different categories that are centered on collections of hues, i.e. whites, pinks, blues, greens, and so on. The book is then further divided into brief profiles of very specific shades, from madder and whitewash to verdigris and dragon’s blood. There are a lot of little tidbits that are added along the way to make the book incredibly interesting, including etymologies, cultural curiosities, and historical intrigue. It is an excellent way of adding more intrigue to your artwork.
- Color by Betty Edwards: A Course in Mastering the Art of Mixing Colors – This is an excellent choice for recreational artists and beginners, giving you a great introduction into the world of color theory and color. It covers all of the information that you would expect to be covered in an introductory college course. Not only this, but the book is very well-written; it is easy to understand. The hands-on learning experience is provided via the various exercises included throughout the book.
- Color: A workshop for artists and designers – Right now I’m reading this book, and I love it! Is a powerful 168-page color resource by David Hornung. It is an excellent book for art students and professionals alike (as we…quilters!), taking a practical approach to color. It effectively bridges the gap between color theory and practice with its succession of particularly designed exercises and in-depth conversations, inspiring confidence and knowledge in anyone working with color.
- Color: A Natural History of the Palette – This book has been written by Victoria Finlay, and we are sure that you will struggle to put it down! It is a truly fascinating read, as Finlay takes us on an adventure around the globe while she chases down the most elusive, rarest, and oldest pigments from around the globe. This includes everything from the purest yellow sourced from the urine of cows in rural India to the ochres utilized by the Australian Aboriginal population for 40,000 years.
As you can see, there are a lot of great books out there today for those who would like to learn more about color theory. If this is something that interests you, the books and reading material that we have referenced above should be of great aid and benefit. Should you want to learn about applying color theory to quilting specifically, please do not hesitate to get in touch today to book a course!