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Complementary Colors. Direct opposites, or across from each other, on the color wheel. Placing complements next to each other will intensify each other’s brightness. Adding one complement to another will reduce the intensity of the color.

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Complementary Colors


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    1. Complementary Colors • Direct opposites, or across from each other, on the color wheel.

    2. Placing complements next to each other will intensify each other’s brightness.

    3. Adding one complement to another will reduce the intensity of the color. • Mixing equal amounts of two complements together will create a neutral brown.

    4. The complement of each primary color (red, blue, or yellow) is the color made by mixing the other two primaries: • red complements (blue + yellow) = green • blue complements (red + yellow) = orange • yellow complements (red + blue) = violet

    5. Op Art • A movement from the 1960s, which used precise geometric patterns painted in vivid colors or black-and-white to create optical illusions of movement to fool the viewer's sense of perspective.

    6. Victor Vasarely(1906-1997) • Hungarian artist, considered “the father of Op Art.” • Vasarely worked as a graphic artist creating posters during the 30’s.

    7. Zebras • Vasarely’s 1938 piece, Zebras is considered to be one of the earliest examples of Op Art.

    8. Your Assignment • Practice different methods of Op Art on your handout, and color them with complementary colored markers. • Choose one of the designs, and ALTER IT to make it your own. • Paint carefully with complementary colors, using acrylic paint!

    9. Artwork by Whitney N.