Complementary Colors

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complementary colors

[‚käm·plə′men·trē ′kəl·ərz]
Two colors which lie on opposite sides of the white point in the chromaticity diagram so that an additive mixture of the two, in appropriate proportions, can be made to yield an achromatic mixture.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Complementary colors

Those pairs of colors, such as red and green, that together embrace the entire spectrum. The complement of one of the three primary colors is a mixture of the other two.
Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Copyright © 2012, 2002, 1998 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Complementary Colors


two colors that form a color that is seen by the eye as white when the radiations of which they are composed are mixed (combined). The radiations composing the complementary colors may have components that are very different, ranging from the monochromatic to radiations with a continuous spectrum.

To obtain two beams of light with a continuous spectrum that meet the requirements of complementary colors, it is sufficient to pass a beam of white light (for instance, sunlight) through a nonabsorbent, color-selective mirror that strongly reflects one part of the spectrum (for example, the blue) and transmits the other part of the spectrum which will have a color complementary to the first color. (For example, blue will be complemented by yellow.)


Gurevich, M. M. Tsvet i ego izmerenie. Moscow-Leningrad, 1950.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Consequently, the excitons of Rubrene and DPVBi layers will increase and reach balance; that is, there is a balance or complementary color in blue emission and yellow emission, resulting in good color stability characteristics of WOLED at various applied voltages.
They use complementary colors. The positive space is one complement and the negative space is the other complement.
Prior to this lesson we do a short assignment of mixing complementary colors with different ratios of color.
Complementary colors provide the most dramatic contrasts: blue and orange, purple and yellow.
With their juxtapositions of complementary colors, these more complex allover compositions are the most chromatically risky.
The line emulates Corian countertops with a solid-color base blended with flecks of complementary colors.
So, what do you get when you combine animal faces with complementary colors, value changes, scale, and drawing grids?
* A fine-arts degree with a concentration in painting taught Mary Kobey how to spin the color wheel successfully In designing this border for the front of her Denver townhouse, Kobey combined spring-blooming flowers and foliage with contrasting or complementary colors.
For example, the section on color includes examples of the color wheel; primary, secondary, and tertiary colors; cool, warm, and neutral colors; complementary colors; and tints and shades.
As Georges Lecomte put it in an 1890 monograph on the artist, "Pissarro, applying in its rigorous logic the law of complementary colors, set his canvases into white frames that without influencing the colors, left the tones with their exact values."(2) When it comes to Kelly's sculpture, particularly the stelae that I admire most of all, the same concern for exact values prevails.
Two of the former tasks that might prove most useful are: using complementary colors in shading, and painting reflected light on water.
Plant them throughout the garden with annuals and perennials in complementary colors. Create color rooms: Put pastels in one place, bright primary colors elsewhere, and whites in another area.

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