What is Hue?

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What is Hue?
Hue is a property of color which is described according to its similarity or difference to the basic colors of red, green, blue, and yellow. So when one describes a particular color with multiple hues, other color properties like lightness and chroma may be used. Like in the case of the color green, hues of this color may be described as “pastel green” or “light green” among many other variations. But in terms of the color wheel, when a particular basic color is mixed with another color, the actual hue may change. If blue is mixed with yellow, these two colors involved will not result to any light or dark values between them. Instead their combined hues will result to a new color property or hue which is green.

Hue is one of three basic color properties that also include value and chroma. Value is sometimes referred to as the color tone. It represents the amount of lightness or darkness of a particular color regardless of its hue. So whether one is looking at a “dark blue” or “light blue” hue or color, its value pertains to the lightness or darkness of this hue. Chroma on the other hand refers to the actual color saturation. It simply means the actual color intensity. If one is looking at the color red, one might want to ask about how “red” it is. This case points to the color red’s saturation or chroma.

Knowing the basic properties of color is important especially in painting, in the field of design, and in other art forms in general. With knowledge on the result of mixing different hues and with the idea of the effects produced by lightening and/or darkening existing hues, one can create or customize a visual work of art. Color hues may be used to highlight a particular area in a picture or may alter the whole façade of a particular building. Hues may also provide needed contrast between different items or colors in a design medium.

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