The first colored comic is believed to be published in 1895 under the name of, “Hogan’s Alley”. Since then, the comic book industry has never been the same. Color has no become an integral part of comic book storytelling. The first thing a reader sees when picking up a comic is color. The inclusion of color breathes life into the various stories illustrated on the page.
Most comics use the method of optical color mixing in order to add color to the page. This process is founded upon basic color theory. The printing process involves four different colors stacked on top of each other in flecks to mix together visually. This is known as CMYK At first glance these colors seem to seamlessly blend together, but if you were to take a closer look, one would discover pixelated dots of only yellow, blue, red, and white.
Take the picture below as an example. Before color is introduce some of the lines seem messy and unclear to discern and interpret. Notice how the smoke seems almost non existent in the first image compared to the second. After the color is added the image sharpens and breathes with a sense of intensity not as easily identifiable before. The intensity was always there it was just more difficult for the reader to pick up on. In fact, I am certain it would take me a few minutes to discern who the character was in the first image. Whereas, in the second the character is easily recognized by the colors that are associated to them.