I just took this little test about color discrimination. I know colors pretty well, but this one is a challenge.
You are given three sets of hues, moving from one color to the next. You drag and drop the intermediate blocks to have them change gradually from the color on the left to the color on the right.
There are lots of them and it’s pretty hard to distinguish between then at times, but still tons of fun. When you are done, you can have the test scored and compare how you did with others of your age and gender who took the test.
You may think you are pretty good at telling the difference between colors, but this test uses what are probably the hardest colors to distinguish. Using Mary Shipp’s terms from Color for Needlework, these are complementary tones. They are not pure colors, but colors made from adding the complement to the hue instead of adding gray.
The result are colors which are complex and toned down. So in distinguishing the hues in the test, you are, distinguishing two colors at the same time, the main color and the complement within that color — very challenging.
These sort of colors are among my favorites, I often call them “uncertain colors,” because they tend to change according to lighting, time of day, and the colors surrounding them. You find them in paint in the higher priced brands (which is why I love Ralph Lauren Paints) and in threads these are the colors which form the transitions between the main colors in an overdye.
In color schemes they have an great importance, because by having the main color and their complement, they include all the primary colors in different amounts (Think about it, a red shade which has some of its complement green in it, has tons of red and small amounts of blue and yellow, the other two primaries.). This means that they play well with the other colors because they echo them through having those colors’ primaries in them. Often they are those not very interesting neutrals like khaki. But adding little bits of them into your needlepoint or using those parts of your overdye can really bring a piece together.