Developing An Eye For Color

photographs and text by Jessica Stammen

Color Theory

For the past few winters, during the weeks that are made of the dark cold days between holiday festivities and mud, I have been lucky enough to join a dozen or so eighth graders at the local middle school for a special class exploring color.

This month we’ve focussed on color vibration, a phenomenon caused by the eye’s inability to focus simultaneously on two opposing or complementary colors, so the edge where the two colors touch appears to vibrate. Working with ColorAid paper cut into stripes and dots, students were asked to select two vibrating colors to show off in a geometric composition of their own design. They were given the additional challenge to pick two more colors that, when incorporated into their composition, would hardly be noticeable; and so each of the student works pictured are made using four colors, not just two! The result: great examples of both vibrating colors and vanishing colors.

Color Theory

Color Theory