Encyclopedia of Color Science and Technology

2016 Edition
| Editors: Ming Ronnier Luo

Primary Colors

  • Paul Green-Armytage
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-8071-7_233

Synonyms

Definition

There are two kinds of primary colors that are often confused. They can be called “physical primaries” and “visual primaries.” Sets of three “physical primaries” in the form of lights, paints, or inks can be mixed to produce a comprehensive range of other colors. These sets are “primary” because they have been found to deliver the most extensive and useful range of other colors. Colors are also recognized as “primary” by virtue of their appearance. These are the “visual primaries.”

Introduction

Much of the confusion that surrounds the topic of color can be exposed in a discussion about primary colors. Primary colors, for some people, are just colors that are particularly vivid. For those who work with color, there are two kinds of primary colors that are often confused. They can be called “physical primaries” and “visual primaries.”

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Design and ArtCurtin UniversityPerthAustralia