Understanding Color & How to Mix It
4.4 (34 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
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Understanding Color & How to Mix It

Teaching Your Colors to Play Well With Others
4.4 (34 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
251 students enrolled
Created by Elizabeth Tucker
Last updated 2/2016
Current price: $10 Original price: $35 Discount: 71% off
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  • 1.5 hours on-demand video
  • 32 Articles
  • 2 Supplemental Resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • A Thorough Understanding of Color
  • How to Choose Your Colors
  • Which Way a Color Leans and How that Affects Color Mixes
  • What a Color Can and Can't Do
  • How to Match Any Color Quickly and Efficiently
  • How to Read a Paint Tube and Why this is Important
  • How to Better Use a Color Wheel
  • How to Choose Paints that Will Give You the Broadest Range of Color and Value
  • Complete Control Over Your Painting Palette
View Curriculum
  • Make sure you have your supplies
  • Mark your canvas into 1" grids

* How often do you mix muddy colors without intending to?

* How often can you match what you are seeing with confidence?

* Do you really understand your colors and what you are capable of having them do?

In this self-paced course you will learn color theory (it's pretty simple), why colors work the way they do, and how your colors can play with the other colors on your palette (and stay best friends).

Who Should Take This Course

* If you are a beginner, this course will put you MILES ahead of others because at the end you will have an excellent understanding of how color works, how to match colors, and even more fundamental, where to start with colors!

* And if you are a working artist you also will get a tremendous value from taking this course because it will clear up misconceptions about color, teach you how colors work and therefore completely speed up your mixing process.

* If you have been looking for that 'perfect' primary red, primary blue, and primary yellow, this will absolutely demystify this dilemma.

* If you mixed that perfect color but can't remember how you did it, this class will teach you which 3 questions to ask yourself so that you can not only mix 'that' color, but match it, over and over again.

* If you want to introduce other colors to your palette but don't know if it will be a good fit, this class will teach you how to analyze a tube of paint and what all that information is telling you.

* Do you have a drawer full of colors but none are quite right? By the end of this course you will know which ones are redundant, which ones might be really helpful, and which ones you might want to use more of.


* Whether you work in Oil, Acrylic, or Watercolor, you will learn to break colors down and then rebuild them so that you will understand each color on your palette.

* You will learn how well your colors will play with the other colors on your palette, and how to choose colors you might want to add or take away from your palette.

* You will be able to choose the paints you need to get the broadest range. In other words, you will learn about the colors you choose and then have total control over your palette.


* In addition to all the class lectures and videos, you will have my email address so that if you have ANY questions about what you are learning I will answer them very quickly.

* Plus, if it's something that will take more than just a simple answer by email we can arrange to speak by phone or Skype. I want you to succeed.


  • A Thorough Understanding of Color
  • How to Choose Your Colors
  • Which Way a Color Leans and How That Affects Color Mixes
  • What a Color Can and Can't Do
  • How to Match ANY Color Easily and Efficiently
  • How To Read a Paint Tube and Why This is Important
  • How to Better Use a Color Wheel
  • Complete Control Over Your Painting Palette
Who is the target audience?
  • This course is for Oil, Acrylic or Watercolor Painters
  • Any one who wants to make clean colors
  • Any one who wants a better understanding of how colors work and why
  • Any one who is making 'muddy' colors and wants to understand how not to do that
  • The 3 questions you need to ask before you start to mix
  • How to match colors
  • Any painter that wants to know more about color and color theory.
  • Beginners and Intermediate painters
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Curriculum For This Course
46 Lectures
Start Here
7 Lectures 18:15

WELCOME!! I'm so excited you are taking this course. Color is AMAZING. It's all around us and affects pretty much everything we do. It's even in our metaphors.....I feel blue, out of the blue, I'm so mad I'm seeing red, red tape, things are rosy, green with envy....you get the idea.

And while we all see color slightly differently from each other, there are physical laws of color that are pretty simple to understand.

As you go through each part of this course you will not only develop a much deeper understanding of color and what happens when you mix colors, you will also have a much more developed and nuanced relationship with color.

Whether you are a watercolor, oil, or acrylic painter this course will work. While I won't be talking about colored pencils or pastels, some of the information in this course will certainly help you in those other mediums.

If you are a beginner, this is a GREAT way to demystify color letting you concentrate on other parts of your creative process. And if you already are a working artist, this also will demystify and clear up a lot of questions. I've had some really excellent painters take this course and then come back later letting me know just how valuable these classes were.

Primarily I will be working in oil, but you are welcome to use whatever mediums you choose. You may also want to use several mediums to compare them with each other. But no matter if you use oil, watercolor, or acrylic, the same 'rules' will apply. I only ask that you actually take the time to do all the work. I PROMISE YOU it will be so interesting and helpful. And FUN!!

Let's get started!!

Preview 02:40

Supply List

In the Resource section you will find 2 Color Wheels. One is the Quiller Color Wheel which was designed by the very well known watercolor artist, Stephen Quiller, and the other is the Color Bias Wheel which was designed by Michael Wilcox.

Please download both of them. You can get them laminated or you can tape them to a piece of cardboard and cover it with a plastic wrap to keep it clean.

Download these 2 Color Wheels
1 page

Let's Start to Paint

In this short video you will see how I set up my palette and how to begin finding the value range of the colors on your palette

Video: Finding the Value Range of Your Colors

Tint: A color that is lightened with the addition of white. They will move toward pastel colors

Shade: A color that is darkened by the addition of black. The color will not only darken but also become duller.

White is a cool color. Not only will it lighten a hue, but it will also cool it and dull it. White is also used to see which direction an extremely dark color is leaning.

Hue: The name of a color, i.e. red, brown, green, etc...

Value: How light or dark a color is. Sometimes the word Tone is used to mean the same thing.

Chroma: How bright or dull a color is. For example the color of rust is an orange hue, middle to dark in value, and dull in its chroma. If something is described as highly or very chromatic it is considered to be colorful and purer in color, therefore not dull.

Color is made up of Hue, Value and Chroma.


1. Color is made up of which 3 things:

5 questions

Congratulations! You've finished the first part of your course and are on the road to learning about color. In this section you have begun to master 2 ways we 'talk' about color. With words such as Hue, Value, and Chroma you are using the vocabulary that is used to describe color. By mixing various tints of your colors you are learning and seeing the visual vocabulary of your colors. WELL DONE!

In the next section you will be learning about your color wheel and what it can do to help you make the colors you want to make.

Ready? Let's go!!

Summary of Finding Your Range of Colors
The Color Wheel and How to Use It
5 Lectures 09:12
Color Wheels: Introduction

Primary & Secondary Colors

Tertiary Colors

Introduction of the Quiller Wheel

10 questions
Color Bias and How it Affects Your Color Mixes
10 Lectures 08:43
What Color Bias Means

Every Color Has ALL Colors in It

The Color Bias Wheel

The Double Primary Palette

Complementary Colors and How They will Affect Your Colors

A Second Look at the Quiller Color Wheel and School of Color Wheel

A Quick Note and Suggestion

Your Most Chromatic Secondary Colors

Less Chromatic Secondary Colors

Least Chromatic Colors

This will test what you know about Compliments and Color Bias

9 questions
Making a Variety of Purples
1 Lecture 14:48
Video: Mixing Purples
Making a Variety of Greens
1 Lecture 09:47
Making a Variety of Oranges
1 Lecture 13:50
Video: Making Oranges
Mixing Greys
4 Lectures 09:37
Using Complementary Colors

Split Complementaries

A Final Note on Greys
Matching Colors
8 Lectures 27:10
Where This All Comes Together

Sequence of Mixing

Video: Matching Wood

Video: Matching a Green Stem

Video: Matching Fuschia Stem

Video: Matching an Orange Stem

Wrap Up of Matching Colors
Side Bar
6 Lectures 03:49

Why the Squares are Important

Tinting Strength


Pigment Notation

A Name By Any Other Name....
Branching Out
1 Lecture 01:35
Other Colors
2 More Sections
About the Instructor
Elizabeth Tucker
4.4 Average rating
34 Reviews
251 Students
1 Course
Artist and Teacher

Originally from upstate New York, I moved to Southern California in my early 20’s. While I've always worked with my hands in the needle arts, it was my husband who encouraged me to begin drawing and painting when he gave me an easel as a gift. Knowing I wanted to pursue a classical tradition I sought out teachers who would help me develop my skills in still life and portrait work and enrolled at LAAFA (Los Angeles Academy of Figurative Art) and Art Center College of Design for more instruction in Anatomy. I continued my education with Ryan Wurmser and Aaron Westerberg and then went on to become a Certified Instructor in the Michael Wilcox School of Color.

For over 5 years I taught in a children's program of a well known Southern California art school and now teach privately out of my studio as well as conducting workshops on both the east and west coasts of the United States.

I am a juried member of both the Pasadena Society of Artists and Women Painters West and I'm the current president of the Angeles Crest Art Guild. I'm happy to say that I've won several awards for my work.