Intro to Color Theory: Color and Emotion

By ·Independent Designer and Illustrator

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Class Project

Create four images that express emotions through the use of color

Color is one of the most basic tools that a designer or illustrator possesses in their visual toolbox, communicating thoughts, feelings, and emotions. Correct use of color can take your project to the next level of professionalism and help your work make a much stronger connection with your audience.

Before you can become a skilled craftsman in the application of color, you must have a firm understanding of color theory. You need to know what colors exist, how they relate to each other, and how to review and discuss the use of color so you can build effective and beautiful color palettes in everything that you create.

What You'll Learn

In this class you will learn how to build and use effective color palettes in order to convey a sense of emotion to your audience. You will use color to express a series of different emotions in order to study how color can affect perception. You will learn tips and tricks on building effective and expansive color palettes as well as ways to edit and control color in both Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop. We'll cover:

  • Color Theory. We'll start with the bare bones of color theory, talk about terminology, look at different ways of creating color, and discuss how to build a color palette.
  • The Context of Color. We'll look at some of the meaning behind color and how to use color that supports what you're trying to convey.
  • Expanding Your Palette. In the final section, we'll take a look at some tips and tricks for polishing your use of color in a project, all while expanding and adding depth to your palette.

What You'll Make

For this class you'll create a series of images that express different emotions. You can choose which emotions you want to portray, or you can choose from a suggested list. We'll work with a set size of 600 x 600 pixels, but the content is up to you. Want to illustrate the emotions of different flavors of popsicles? Awesome! Want to create a set of icons showing the different emotions of R2D2? Great! We'll talk about the best way to use color in any and every scenario.

Student Project by Lavinia Ungureanu

Prerequisites

To make the most out of this class you will need only a basic understanding of Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.

Level: Beginner

Dominic Flask

Independent Designer and Illustrator

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I have an MFA in Graphic Design and am an Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at Wichita State University. I strive to use color as both an illustrative tool and a vehicle for conveying thoughts and emotions in all of my work. You can see the way I use a wide variety of color to communicate different emotions in my portfolio and on Dribbble.

Check out my other Skillshare class on illustrating badges and icons here!

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    • At a Glance

    • Membership Class

      Free With Membership

      Become a member to get access to this class for only $9.95 a month. Or, purchase individually for the list price.

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    • 11 Video Lessons
    • 1.6K Students
    • 100% Positive Reviews (18)
    • Self-Paced Online Class
    • How does an online class work?

      Classes revolve around completing a project and collaborating with fellow students to give and get feedback on your work. Use Video Lessons and the Project Guide designed by your teacher to complete your class project.

    • Do teachers give project feedback?

      Teachers design and present all class content, but Skillshare is community based around student-to-student interaction. You'll be surprised at what you learn from your classmates!

    • When does a class end?

      Never! Once enrolled, you have lifetime access to class materials. That means you can learn when and where you want. Learn at your own pace.

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    Start this class
    or Purchase for $29

    Free With Membership

    Become a member to get access to this class for only $9.95 a month. Or, purchase individually for the list price.

    Learn More