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Color Perspective

It is important to understand the principles of color perspective. Warm colors like red and yellow are considered advancing colors. Cool colors such as blue and green are receding colors.

In this exercise, you will create paint strokes of cool colors, blue and green, and create a river of red strokes starting in the lower left and going across to the upper right. Keep your strokes the same size. Keep them evenly spaced so that there is white background showing through as in the example below. This is the basic idea of color perspective where the warm color (red) comes forward and the cool colors (blue and green) recede.

Color Perspective Exercise


Below are some paintings by master artists that demonstrate how warm and cool colors control and manipulate space and perspective in the artwork.


Gerhard Richter, Abstract Painting 780-1, 1992.


Henri Matisse, The Green Line (La Raie verte), 1905.


Joan Mitchell  Untitled, mid-1950s, oil on canvas.

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