Color Expert Tip: Color Terminology Explained

Color Terminology, Kirkland Paint Contractor, Painting AmericaAs a professional painting contractor based in Bothell, Washington, it’s our job to be color experts.

When it comes to the paint in your home, we have to be able to help you pick the right color.

Believe it or not, there’s a lot to know about color!

To help you understand more about what we do as color & repaint specialists, we’ve prepared a list of key color terms.

Color Tips

Hue = color
This is a synonym for the name of the color that reflects the dominant wavelength; for example red, blue, yellow and so on.

Saturation or chroma describes the intensity of a color-how much or how little gray it contains. The purer a color, the more it approaches the colors of the spectrum and the greater its saturation.

So the word “saturation” means just that-the color can’t be any “truer” than that. Colors at their highest chroma or saturation are at their ultimate brilliance, while lowered saturation makes them much more subdued and muted.

Value = darkness
The lightness or darkness of a color is called its value. Closely related values are seen as calm and quiet, while sharp changes in value suggest more drama.

The impact of color is not just about the actual hue, but also involves the saturation and value.

Undertone = underlying color
This denotes an underlying color within any given hue. For example, yellow in yellowish green, red in reddish violet, gray in grayish blue.

Another word for undertone is cast, as in brown with a red cast.

Tone= blended with gray
A mixture of a saturated color with gray.

Shade= mixture
Although this word is often used interchangeably with the word color, a shade is actually a mixture of a fully saturated hue

Tint=color blended with white
A tint is a mixture of a saturated hue with white, so that pastels are all tints.

As you can tell, there’s a lot to know about color and paint selection for your home.

For more information, call us today at 425-488-1192!


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