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Color Notes PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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CP Physics Mr. Miller. Color Notes. General Information. Sir Isaac Newton – first to realize white light composed of different colors Prisms – separate white light into colors of light making up the visible light spectrum Each color has its own wavelength and frequency

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Color Notes

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Cp physics mr miller

CP Physics

Mr. Miller

Color Notes


General information

General Information

  • Sir Isaac Newton – first to realize white light composed of different colors

  • Prisms – separate white light into colors of light making up the visible light spectrum

  • Each color has its own wavelength and frequency

  • Higher frequency = greater energy

    • Red light – lowest frequency so least energy

    • Violet light – highest frequency so most energy


Seeing colors

Seeing Colors

  • Color is the property of light reaching the eye

  • Objects absorb some colors and reflect others

  • We see the reflected colors!!


Color rule 1

Color Rule #1

  • The color of an opaque object depends on the frequency of light it reflects.

    • All colors reflected and none absorbed = white

    • No colors reflected and all absorbed = black


Color rule 2

Color Rule #2

  • Color of an opaque object depends on the color of light shown on it.

    • Red object - reflects red light

      • Shine white light on it – looks red

      • Shine red light on it – looks red

      • Shine green light on it – look black


Color rule 3

Color Rule #3

  • Color of a transparent object depend on the color of light it transmits.

    • Blue filter transmits only blue light through it.

      • Shine white light on it – blue passes through.

      • Shine blue light on it – blue passes through.

      • Shine red light on it – no light passes through.


Visible spectrum

Visible Spectrum

  • ROY G BIV – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet

  • Polychromatic = many frequencies of light colors together

  • Monochromatic = single frequency of light


Primary colors of light

Primary Colors of Light

  • Red, Blue, Green

  • When added together they produce white light


Secondary colors of light

Secondary colors of light

  • Magenta, Cyan, Yellow

  • Produced when two primary colors added:

    • Red + Blue = Magenta

    • Blue + Green = Cyan

    • Green + Red = Yellow


Complementary light colors

Complementary Light Colors

  • A primary light color and a secondary light color that will produce white light when added together

  • Complements:

    • Red + Cyan

    • Green + Magenta

    • Blue + Yellow


Primary pigments

Primary Pigments

  • Pigments = chemicals which absorb certain frequencies of light and reflect others

  • Primary pigments absorb one primary color of light and reflect two primary colors

    • Magenta – absorbs green, reflects red and blue

    • Cyan – absorbs red, reflects green and blue

    • Yellow – absorbs blue, reflects red and green

  • So a primary pigment absorbs its complement!


Secondary pigments

Secondary Pigments

  • Absorb two primary pigments and reflect one primary pigment

  • Red, Blue, Green


Light colors vs pigments

Light colors vs. Pigments

  • Primary colors of light = secondary pigments

  • Secondary colors of light = primary pigments

  • Mixing colors of light = ADDITIVE process

    • More colors added – color of light gets lighter

  • Mixing pigments = SUBTRACTIVE process

    • Pigments absorb color, so more pigments absorb more colors of light and less reflected for us to see, gets darker


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