Color: Kristin Becker (Sample Post)

Selection from Chris Ware's graphic novel, "Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth" (Pantheon, 2003).

Selection from Chris Ware‘s graphic novel, “Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth” (Pantheon Graphic Novels, 2003).

This page from graphic novelist Chris Ware’s book, “Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth” is an excellent example of the interaction of fully saturated color with very desaturated color. The colors used in the backgrounds and buildings of each frame are tints and shades of the hues red, yellow-orange, orange, blue, and blue-green. White, black, or gray has been mixed with each of these hues to make it very desaturated. When small amounts of fully saturated hues are placed within these frames, our eye is drawn immediate to the pop of color: The fully saturated red hue used for the bird stands out strongly against the desaturated red (or pink) sky. When used again at the lower left, the red hue is paired with the blue-green background of the window, which provides another strong color interaction: Green is the complement of red, so desaturated blue-green as a background for the red bird also makes the fully saturated red stand out to the eye. The blue hue of the Medlife sign and the yellow hue of the stop sign are also fully saturated, making them stand out strongly against their desaturated backgrounds. Finally, the fully saturated hues that Chris Ware chooses to use for his main subject matter are also the primary colors: blue, yellow, and red. This may also cause them to have a powerful effect, since they are the purest colors (as opposed to secondary and tertiary colors, which are mixed from the primary
colors).

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