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  • Writer's pictureLee Andersen


I have been inside Lee’s head when she is working with color. It is happy place for her. She sometimes spells it colour because she grew up in New Zealand.

I’ve noticed the action inside Lee’s brain when she works with color. It is so fast it is could be described as instinctive. She juggles hundreds of choices of color to make a decision but she also likes to check herself using the math behind human color theory.

If she is looking for a contrasting color to an analogous color grouping she is working with, she will methodically analyze the colors in her current palette and use color theory to help her hone in on the choices of fabrics for the contrasting color.

Lee describes Analogous colors as a group of family members, related but individual. Their names are Anne, Al and Gus.

Anne, Al and Gus live inside a right-angle triangular house. The house is set with one point of the triangle at the center of the color wheel and the two other arms span 90 degrees.

If the main family member is green, the analogous family will include blue-green on one side and greenish yellow or lime on the other. If she is looking for the complement of an analogous group she identifies the center main color of the family group and then goes to the opposite side of the color wheel and find its perfect contrast.

The opposite of green is red so the complement of the blue-green, green and lime-green family is red.

If analogous family house is twisted a bit, the complement changes. For example if she selects blue green as the center of her analogous family then the other family members would be blue and green. The opposite or complement of blue green is not simply red. It is a red-orange.

The next problem Lee has to solve, is the choice of the fabric itself. Is it shiny or matte, stretch or woven…

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