Colour Characteristics

Hue (Another name for colour)

  • With hue we define the undertone of the colour
  • This means whether someone tends to have either a blue-based or yellow-based undertone e.g. blue red or tomato red. The warmer a colour the more yellow it has, the cooler the colour the more blue it has.

Value / Brightness (Depth of the colour)

  • The value is a measurement of the brightness of a colour. The brighter a colour is, the higher is its value and the more light it emits.


Chroma / Saturation (Clarity of the colour)

  • Indicates colour intensity.
  • It is a measurement of how different from pure grey the colour is. Chroma is a measurement how pale or strong the colour is.
  • Some colours are bright and clear and others are muted or dusky. The softer the colour the more grey it has

Tint, tone and shade

  • These are terms to describe how a colour varies from its original hue. If white is added, the lighter version of the colour is called a tint of the colour.
  • On the other hand, if grey is added we get a darker version of the colour, which is called tone and if black is added we get a very dark version of the colour. This is called a shade of the colour.
Tints, tones and shades


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