Basic color characteristics in color

We watch a movie, broadcast a fashion show from Paris, or look through an interior design magazine. Often, names of flowers are commented on with the help of poetic names or as the Indians call them. Then the basic color characteristics come to the rescue, which help to choose any color. Fashion designers, textile workers, designers, military, forensic scientists, as well as manufacturers of paints and precision measuring instruments cannot do without them.

The subjective characteristics of color are used to describe visual sensations. These include hue, lightness and saturation.

Color tone

Indicates a person’s own color sensations. For example, a blue chair and a red napkin differ in color – blue and red. Achromatic colors do not have this characteristic. But the concept of tone in painting is different from the understanding of tone in color science. Artists change the tone or tonality of the color with white paint or by applying one paint to another. In addition, in drawing, they also use terms such as halftone, subton and shade. Halftone is a lighter tone and vice versa, darker – red – dark red. A subton is an admixture of a different color in the main color tone, which creates the hue. For example, turquoise is a shade of green with a blue undertone.


It characterizes colors, determining the proximity of chromatic and achromatic colors to white. It is estimated by the reflection coefficient, measured in percent or nit. The lightest color is white, and the darkest is black, between them are gradations of pure gray. Yellow is the lightest color among spectral colors, and its opposite is purple.


A characteristic of colors that determines the content of pure chromatic color in a mixed one. And expressed in fractions of a unit. Spectral colors are pure chromatic colors. Their purity is taken as a unit. The lower the saturation of such a color, the closer it is to achromatic colors. Thus, to such a color it is easier to find the achromatic color corresponding to it by lightness. The combination of hue and saturation is called chroma.

Based on the foregoing, all chromatic colors are evaluated by parameters, the total amount of which determines the characteristic of all possible combinations of light radiation. So, at any point on the globe it is possible to determine with absolute accuracy what color is meant. The main thing is that the basic color characteristics of this color are known.

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