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My journal is about the nerdy-ness of graphic design, printing and art. I would like to share my learning and knowledge on various aspects of design and visual arts.
Dipping into colour & digital painting

Every colour has a meaning, a feeling and an emotion that we humans have a connection to.

Colour psychology (primary colours):

- is a cool colour associated with calmness, relaxation and stability. It seeks peace and tranquility. It is related to verbal communication and promotes physical and mental relaxation. It is also associated with clean-ness and order.

Red - is a warm colour associated with action, energy and passion. It excites emotions and motivates us to take action. Red is often used to express love, hence why we see red hearts and when we think of valentines day, we see a lot of red.

Yellow - is a warm colour associated with the mind and intellect. It is the lightest colour of the spectrum which resonates with the left side of our brains (logic) creating mental stability and perception. Yellow is also enthusiastic and fun. It relates to the sun which provides us with energy.

Every colour you see are made up of the 3 primary colours which include; Blue, red and yellow. Also, black and white can be added for darkness and lightness. Alongside these primary colours we have complimentary, analogous, tertiary and secondary colours.

Colour on the web and in print:

Whether you are designing or creating illustrations for print or the web, you must be aware of the two main colour spaces which include RGB and CMYK.

RGB = Red, green and blue. This is used for web only. RGB colours are additive colours, so the colours are being added together to achieve lighter colours or until the outcome is white. RGB colours can become much more saturated and vibrant compared to CMYK colours (unless using pantone colours).

CMYK = Cyan, magenta, yellow and black. This is used for print only. CMYK colours are subtractive colours which mean they will not get lighter, or have that same vibrancy as RGB. Offset printing requires the 4 CMYK printing plates to produce the product. Each plate is filled with a specific amount of colour. You can have an illustration with a purple colour that may have 55% cyan, 88% magenta, 54% yellow and 9% black. The only way to get the perfect, vibrant colours similar to RGB is to use Pantone colours. Pantone colours use a separate printing plate than the CMYK plates. It cost more money and it is much more time consuming, per colour. This is why many print products have CMYK + 1 or 2 pantone colours.

Basically, computer screens show more colours than a print would show.

So, when you are designing for the web, use RGB colour space at 72 ppi, and for print you want to work in CMYK at 300 ppi or higher, anything lower than 300 ppi will turn out very pixelated.

ppi = pixels per inch (it is the resolution of the design, image or illustration)

Vector vs Raster:

To put it in the simplest form:

Vector uses mathematics, so, you can scale it as big as a 50 story building (even bigger) and it will never pixelate! (Isn't that amazing?!) Raster uses pixels, so you cannot scale up, but you can scale down and it can be tricky to work with if you do not have the proper resolution. Adobe Illustrator is a vector based program and Adobe Photoshop is raster based program.

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