The difference between warm and cold colors comes from the color theory that emerged from the 18th century to explain the effect of other colors on the viewer. Colors like blue, green, and purple are considered cool, while colors like red, orange, or yellow are warm. This division of colors is psychological, artistic and scientific; cold colors are associated with the sea, the sky and the forest. While the warm colors are combined with the fire and the sunset.
What are the warm and cool colors?
The concept of warm and cool colors has been written for hundreds of years. Most theories start with the classic six-point color wheel (three primary colors and three secondary colors). A dividing line divides the wheels into warm and cold. The position of the line changes according to the reasoning of the theorist. In any case, the general idea is that the warm colors are red, orange and yellow; cool colors are green, blue, and magenta.
The chromatic circle
As stated in the previous paragraph, here we can see graphically the explanation through the chromatic circle where warm and cold colors are distinguished by separating them into two equally symmetrical parts.
The human eye sees color and as rational beings we assign it interpretations and emotions. Therefore, the sensations of heat are related to the heat and cold of a painting that we see for example. With this approach, various types of research have been conducted to determine which colors can be distinguished from hot and cold, taking into account the common effects they generate in humans.
Warm colors convey the feeling of high temperature. On the one hand, red is the most representative, because the redder or its hue, the warmer.
In this sense, yellow is another bright spot, which can be well represented by red energy, fire, passion, day, and of course the time of year like summer.
Cold colors can give a low-temperature feeling. On the other hand, blue is more relevant for this, and if it appears in other shades, it helps people feel cooler.
Similarly, green is a color, and when combined with blue, it is synonymous with tranquility, calm, loneliness, tranquility, sadness, night and winter.
Warm and cold colors drawings
As usual on our site, here I leave you spectacular free resources of warm and cold drawings, some with a predominance of one or the other that you can use for your color theory project. I hope you like it 😉
Examples of warm and cold colors
And as if that were not enough, here I put an extra, with very good photos that use warm and cold colors or combine them, I hope they also serve you.