Re: "Black will kill your colors."
I think that we are discussing a term here—the “Can Black kill your colors?” term—that may be quite akin to someone asking for a brown color to be made, “less brown”, for example. What does the term, “less brown” mean in practical, and correctible terms? Well, it usually means different things to different people.
“Less brown” could mean any of the following: darken it, lighten it, make it yellower, make it more neutral, make it less neutral, add red, or subtract red, and the list goes on and on. Like the “kill your colors” term, it is quite vague. And, how does one monitor just when a brown color has achieved the status of being “less brown”? I surely wouldn’t know. How does one know just when a color has been effectively “killed”? Sometimes, I wish I knew.
In simple fact, the term, “kill” has very little meaning, and when used with descriptions of color, often can take on quite a negative meaning.
When I operated a high end color scanner, we usually had to interpret such subjective descriptions from a client who wanted particular changes, but used terms that did not mean very much to the workers in our color department.
A typical color scanner has hundreds of buttons and dials for controlling color, and there really were times when I wished that I could have had a, “Brighten” button. Other buttons that I wished the scanner had were such things as a “Punch” button, a “Pizazz” button, a “Zing” button, a "Pop" button, or an “Impact” adjustment button It may also have been nice to have had a “kill” button. However, those things just don’t exist on a technical, color scanner, simply because they are all pseudo-descriptive terms, at best, used more by art directors, than by technicians who have an understanding of the 3 dimensions of color.
I don’t believe that using black in mixtures truly “kills your colors”. However, I do believe that an artist can “kill” his own colors, by using black (or any other color) inappropriately for the effect he is trying to achieve. Low chroma colors have not been “killed”; they simply exhibit the characteristic of being lower in chroma, and when used where they belong in a subject, can be quite useful, actually.
Last edited by WFMartin : 12-03-2010 at 07:05 PM.