Color has qualities. Each color has four. Hue, tone, saturation and temperature.
Understanding what these words mean to color and how these will affect what you create using color...is very important.
The very basic of definition of an original color...this is the name of the color. This is just the color. For example, yellow, orange, green, red-orange, etc. It is NOT the degree of color. Light red or pale blue are not hues. These are "Tones" of a "Hue". A Hue is the base color.
Tone: Used to define the lightness or darkness of a Hue. Tone is used to create depth, contrast and harmony...or discord. It can be used to create dimension.
My instructor always refers to this as "VALUE". When you assess a picture using value...light and dark tones..you can begin to understand color and depth in a new way.
Saturation: Intensity of a Hue. How dense and intense is a color? There are intensities in colors. Think of the bright intense red of a valentine heart, or the deep intense red of a lipstick vs the color of a red barn..which is browner in color and less intense.
Temperature: Is your color considered "Warm" or "Cool". Find yourself a color wheel and learn the warm vs cool colors. All colors have cool and warm variables. A cool red is said to feel less hot than a warm red. A cool red will have more of a blue undertone and will recede in a painting. A warm red will have yellow undertones and will appear to pop out to the front of the painting. All Hues have warm or cool variations and learning to work with this concept will give life and excitement to your paintings.
Take a look at this example of using these concepts in my painting, called FireFlowers. In this painting, you will see examples of all I have discussed here in this lesson on color.