How to make color charts & color wheels

Written by ruth o'neil
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Artists and designers of all sorts use colour wheels and charts. Color wheels are circles that resemble a rainbow. Find complementary colours by pairing colours opposite each other on the colour wheel. Find analogous colours by using colours that are side by side on the wheel. Color charts are a little more complicated and give you a wider variety of colours including the shades and tints of each colour. Choose colours for your colour chart.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • White card stock
  • Pencil
  • Compass
  • Ruler
  • Paper plates
  • Paintbrush
  • Red paint
  • Blue paint
  • Yellow paint
  • Gray Paint
  • Black Paint

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Instructions

    Color Wheels

  1. 1

    Use a compass and draw an 8-inch circle on the white card stock. Divide the circle into 12 even sections using the ruler.

  2. 2

    Mark the sections of the circle by numbering them from 1 to 12. Make sure to use the pencil and write outside of the circle.

  3. 3

    Make the primary colour sections of the wheel. Pour a dab of blue paint on one of the paper plates. Use the paintbrush to fill in section number 1. Place a dab of yellow paint on another paper plate. Fill in section 5. Repeat using the red paint and filling in section 9.

  4. 4

    Mix equal portions of the paints to make the secondary colours on the wheel. Mix half blue and half yellow paint and fill in section 3. Mix equal portions of yellow and red and fill in section 7. Mix equal portions of red and blue and fill in section 11.

  5. 5

    Combine paints to make the tertiary colours. Mix the paint from section 3 with an equal amount of blue. Use this to fill in section 2. Mix the paint from section 3 with yellow and fill in section 4. Mix the paint from section 7 with yellow and fill in section 6. Mix the paint from section 7 with red and fill in section 8. Mix the paint from section 11 with red and fill in section 10. Mix the paint from section 11 with blue and fill in section 12 to complete the colour wheel.

    Color Charts

  1. 1

    Use the ruler to draw lines on a piece of white card stock. Divide the paper into 36 squares.

  2. 2

    Fill in the paint squares across the top of the chart in this order: white, yellow, red, blue, grey and black. Repeat this order down the side of the chart.

  3. 3

    Follow the order of the colours (one from the side of the chart and one from the top of the chart) to mix equal amounts of paint and fill in the squares in the first row. (For example, the first square is all white. The second square is equal amounts of white and yellow. The third square is equal amounts of white and red.) Continue working this way to fill in all the squares.

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