Exploring Color

Since ancient times, artists have been playing with and exploring using color to portray a feeling or certain mood. Color can give the illusion of depth or texture also. This collection shows pieces that use colors in imaginative or unique ways.

The darkness of the majority of this piece contrasts with the light green, catching your attention and giving a sense of illumination from the moon on the water. If you look closely, you can also see dark reds and purples which give it a eerie feel.
Van Gogh is known for experimenting with color and figure, and in this piece, this is very apparent. The green and yellow tones give it a cozy, yet musky feel, and if you look at how the people are proportioned, the potato eaters look almost like potatoes themselves, having exaggerated and lumpy features.
This piece shows a dramatic contrast between the dark background and the light blues used to make the girl. This gives the portrait an elegant feel, making the girl seem almost magical. Also, the complementary colors in her hair and between the eclipse and her really bring the focus to her face.
Monet, being one of the impressionists, explores colors extensively in his works. This piece in particular was done later in his life, so Monet could not see as well as he could for his earlier works. Because of that, it is apparent that this piece is really capturing the experience and feeling he had upon viewing this scene of his water lilies, and the color choice reflects that.
The color in this piece can be interpreted in many ways. The blues and cool colors used may be said to portray a sad or nostalgic feeling. But also with the combination of yellow and orange in it, they might be watching a sunrise, and it gives a calm feeling.
This piece is from Picasso's blue period, and, like many of the other pieces from this period, portray a depressed or nostalgic feeling. The use of cool blues and greens help portray the melancholy feeling.
This piece uses color and texture to give an elevated feel to the figures. The light blues used in the majority of the work help the darker blues and reds to really stick out.
This piece is a great example of complementary colors. The blue from the figure's shirt contrasts well with their hair. Also, the red background complements the skin tone and brings the colors together very well.
Van Gogh focused a lot on lighting and the way it can effect color. Considering this, it seems like this piece was done in cool lighting, possibly in the evening or early morning. The piece is mostly done in light blues and greens, with van Gogh's ginger beard and hair contrasting.
This piece uses layers of two-dimensional colors to create a three-dimensional work. The first layer, the face, uses reds and oranges, or warm colors, and the layers covering it are composed of light purple and blue, or cool colors. This gives a feeling of warmth being smothered by coldness or maybe being frozen over.
In this piece, the green and grey of the grass and sky is muted somewhat by the stark contrast of brilliant red that the poppies were painted with. This makes the piece eye-catching and draws the focus towards the upper left corner.
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