Radial Color Design

Even though this is 12th grade, many of my seniors have not had art since 8th grade, so a refresher on the color wheel is needed, especially since their next couple of lessons involve painting and mixing colors. I usually start out with a Prezi lecture that consists of a two day lecture. The first day is just the color wheel, and the second day is values and schemes.

Why do I break it up? Well I have them do worksheets in class that involve painting skills, so I would rather them learn one concept-the entire color wheel, mixing colors, putting them into a color wheel worksheet and then the next day a smaller lecture with painting skills on values and schemes. I think its hard enough to get them to use just red, blue and yellow to create all these colors and then throw white and black into the mix for the tints and shades.

The assignment will consist of the student drawing from observation one object and then having them trace the same object 12 times to use for the radial color wheel. Each piece or slice is 4″ x 8″ wide. Once all pieces have been painted in the correct colors, they will place the pieces in a circle to create a radial design. They will be using carbon tracing paper to since we are using a Bristol paper. Then when complete, it will be mounted on a 18×18′ black piece of drawing paper.

Objective: The student will learn the concept of color.  The student will learn the concept of color theory.  The student will learn the concept of color schemes.  The student will learn how to effectively use the color wheel.

Students will know that:

  • Color is an element of art
  • The color wheel is made up of three different types of colors – Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary.
  • The primary colors are red, yellow, and blue.
  • The secondary colors are orange, green, and purple.
  • Adding white creates a TINT of a color, and black creates a SHADE
  • Monochromatic colors and Analogous colors, warm and cool colors.

Artistic Language:

  • Color – Element of art derived from reflected light.  We see color because light waves are reflected from objects to your eyes.
  • Primary colors – The most basic colors on the color wheel, red, yellow and blue.  These colors cannot be made by mixing
  • Secondary colors – colors that are made by mixing two primary colors together. Orange, green and violet (purple)
  • Tertiary colors – colors that are made by mixing a primary color with a secondary color.
  • Hue – the name of the color.
  • Value – the darkness or lightness of a color. Ex pink is a tint of red
  • Tints – are created by adding white to a color
  • Shades – are created by adding black to a color
  • Monochromatic- literally means one (mono) color (chroma).  So a monochromatic color scheme is made up of one color and it’s shades and tints.
  • Analogous colors- are colors that are next to each other on the color wheel.  When used as a color scheme, analogous colors can be dramatic. Ex. Blue, blue-green, green, and yellow-green; red, red-purple, purple, blue-purple
  • Complementary colors- are colors found directly across from each other on the color wheel.  Complementary color scheme provide strong contrast.  Ex. Blue and orange, red and green, yellow-green and red-purple.

Tasks: Day 1: Color Wheel (Paint the worksheet in front of you to match the color wheel – and answer all the questions.) Day 2 Values and Schemes Worksheet

Sketchbook Assignment: Create 2 – 4”x8” rectangles. Each rectangle has to have a design that would allow them to incorporate two colors (one for the color wheel color, and one for the complementary color). Check out the lesson photo gallery for ideas. Think easy, this is a quick lesson. Maybe organic shapes, trees, leaves, sneakers, fish, penguins, candy, etc. You will choose out of the two which is your favorite. Details will be hard to see if darker colors so think “less is more.”

Materials: Bristol (Vellum), scissors, carbon paper, acrylic paint (red, blue, yellow), brushes, water cups, pallet trays, paper towels

Prezi Link

Radial Color Design Rubric

colorwheel copy


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