Important Notes Color

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1 Important Notes Color Introduction A definition for color (MPI Glossary) The selective reflection of light waves in the visible spectrum. Materials that show specific absorption of light will appear the color of the wavelength that they reflect. Color has a definite effect on emotions, and influences to a marked degree the health of an individual. Three essentials to color: Light the illuminant Object the modifier Eye the observer or receiver Light What is Light? Light is the source of color. Light, according to modern science, is electro magnetic energy and comes to us in waves of varying lengths but all traveling at the same speed. Colors will appear different under different light sources. The light of sun in normal daylight is white, and is composed of a visible spectrum of colors (red, yellow, green, blue and violet rainbow colors). How do we see color? Light has all the colors in it. Every object has the ability to reflect parts of the colors and absorb the rest (i.e. when a person sees red, all the colors except red are absorbed into the surface and not reflected). Black is the complete absorption of available light (that s why black absorbs heat energy). White is the complete reflection of available light (if the light source is white the object will appear white). Color Theory Three primary colors Red Blue Yellow Secondary colors (complimentary mixtures of 2 primary colors) Orange Violet Green Tertiary colors (combining primary and secondary colors in equal amounts, earthy colors) Red orange Yellow green Blue violet Red violet Yellow orange Blue green Three Dimensions of Color Hue: Identifies a color by name, every color falls into a definite hue category.

2 Chroma: Purity of color or saturation (relative intensity adding white, gray or black will lessen the intensity or chroma). Value: Degree of darkness or lightness (in relation to white and black). Color Systems Many systems have been developed to identify and measure colors. Two major systems: Ostwald characterizes colors by dominant wavelength, purity & luminance. Munsell The MUNSELL system is a collection of color samples for comparison, with adjacent samples based upon equal perceived differences in color. A set number of full strength colors are set down by both of these systems: 10 hues for Munsell (simpler to work with) 24 hues for Ostwald Both of these systems are based on subjective color comparisons and the samples can fade and degrade with time. *Newest System NCS (Natural Color System developed by the Scandinavian Colour Institute). NCS Natural Colour System Is a logical system that increases efficiency and saves money by using one master sample for all vendor categories. Is like a sphere or globe with the equator representing the color circle based on 4 colors (red, green, blue, yellow). Black & white are used to divide the four into 40 (units of ten). These forty colors then can have various amounts of black/gray or white added to produce over 1700 different colors. Example: when moving from yellow to red, each step gets 10% red. Orange is Y50R since it is half way between yellow and red. Color & Paint Historically, all colors were produced using natural pigments that were either dug out of the ground or were a product of a vegetable or animal. Modern colors consist of processed pigments that have many origins. Colored pigments are mixed in the paint factory to produce stock colors, or individual paint outlets can tint or add colorant to manufacturer bases. Painters do not need to color match very often but they should be able to recognize problems with paints that have either too much colorant added or too many colorants added. Too much colorant: Paint will be quite thick Paint will lose gloss when it dries Paint dries soft Paints may not dry Paints may lose their protective qualities Paints may be too dark when it dries Too many colorants: Paints will tend to gray off Unable to reproduce the color again Tinting Bases There are many systems used to tint. Some companies have a series of five or more bases that range from white to almost clear. Other companies have very simple systems with only two or three bases. Samples of bases:

3 White Base Neutral or Pastel base Deep Base (Accent or Ultra Deep Base), Clear Base A few examples of how to better hide with deep or accent bases: Yellow: use a pure white first coat (no marks or blemishes on the white coat) and then apply 2 coats of yellow. Orange & Red: use a burnt sienna or red oxide mixed in a neutral base, producing a reddish brown first coat. This allows the orange to cover better. Blue, Green, Black, Red: These colors usually cover quite well but there should still be a first coat that is similar (but slightly grayer) to provide better hide. Most manufacturers will produce a compatible primer or undercoat to go under these darker colors; but always remember that blemishes, roughness, scratches and poor application will show up dramatically. Proper surface prep and proper sealing of the surface is imperative for a successful job! Color Pigments One of the prime functions of paint is to impart color to a surface. Color pigments come from the earth, from chemicals, from vegetable dyes and from animal bones. There are many types of color pigments but here is a list of the common earth colors: Raw Sienna Burnt Sienna Red Oxide Golden or Yellow Oxide Raw Umber Burnt Umber Chemical colors include: Blues Phthalocyanine blue Yellows Hansa yellow (light) Green Light green and Phthalocyanine green Reds Napthol red and interior red Orange Lamp Black Titanium White Purple Points to Remember Always choose the correct base for tinting (3 bases white, neutral, clear or accent base). Choose the correct type of liquid tinting color. Two most commonly used colors in oil and universal tinting colors (all purpose). Effects of Light on Color Different types of light affect colors differently. Metamerism: Is when two colors appear to match under one light source, but do not under another. This is caused in part from the use of different colorants (pigments, dyes) to arrive at the same color and their differing reactions to differing illuminant wavelengths.

4 These two colors are called a metameric match. Gloss & Light Reflectance Gloss is the degree to which the finish reflects visual images. Light reflectance is the amount of light the surface reflects. Neither is related to hue so it is possible to have a finish with a low gloss and a low light reflectance. Light Reflectance Value is the measure of how much light is reflected from a surface in comparison to how much light the surface received (in percent). Gloss degree of shine on a surface that can be measured. As the surface becomes rougher the gloss will drop (low sheen or flat surface). Smoother surfaces can produce a higher gloss level (easier to wash and more durable than a flat surface). MPI Gloss Levels (7) see chart in the color chapter. From a traditional flat to a high gloss with the appropriate measurements for each level at 60 (gloss) and 85 (sheen). Note: 2 colors that are the same when wet will look very differently when dry if they are a different gloss. Psychology of Color It is important to know the impact that color can have! It can alter the look of a room, making it look spacious or cozy, and larger or smaller than it actually is. It can create a visual impression of warmth (yellow, orange, red, yellow green and red purple) or coolness (blue, blue green, green, blue gray), tranquility or energy. Warm colors advance towards you, cool colors retreat away from you. Color perception is subjective! Extra Notes 1. Color selective reflection of light waves in the visible spectrum 2. Three essentials that enter into the phenomenon called color: light the illuminant object the modifier eye the receiver or observer 3. The Primary Colors yellow, red and blue 4. The Secondary Colors orange, purple and green 5. Hue The first, and most obvious, dimension (which usually identifies a color by name, i.e., red, yellow, blue, green, etc.) is called "hue." Every color falls into a definite hue category as indicated by the Spectrum color names. 6. NCS this system is the most used color standard in Europe. 7. Too much colorant added may cause: i) the paint to be quite thick ii) the paint will lose gloss when it dries iii) the paint dries soft may lose adhesion as well iv) the paint may not dry v) the paint will lose their protective qualities vi) the paint may be too dark when it dries 8. Because color pigments are used exclusively for color and hiding power, there may be some transparency in the paint. 9. Use only a pure white first coat with a yellow 10. Coloured pigments are earth colors that include are Ocher's, Sienna's and Umber's 11. With a white base a maximum amount of colorant used is generally four ounces per gallon 12. Clear Base, Accent Base(Ultra Deep) has no white pigment 13. Universal Tinting Colors (All Purpose) can be used to tint alkyd, latex, acrylics, vinyls. 14. Oranges, yellows and yellow greens are warm colors 15. Metamerism is when two colors appear to match under one light source, but do not under another

5 16. Light reflectance value is the measure of how much light is reflected from a surface in comparison to how much light the surface received (in percent) 17. A very dark surface absorbs light like a sponge and reflects only a small amount of the light 18. Gloss & Sheen are 60 and 85 degrees 19. Psychology of Color 1. can alter the appearance of a room can highlight architectural flaws or hide them 2. can create a visual impression of warmth or coolness, as well as a feeling of tranquility or energy 20. Greens are mostly "cool". 21. Yellow, orange, red, yellow green and red purple are classified as warm colors. 22. Blue, Blue green, Green, Blue gray are cool colors.

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