What does Temperature Mean in Artwork?

Temperature and mood are two words that can crop up in art classes, magazines and books but what do these terms mean?  These terms are usually used in relation to the use of colour in artwork.


Colours suggest warmth or coolness and this is known as ‘temperature’ which is also used in photography.  Yellows, oranges, reds and pinks are considered ‘warm’, green, blues and violets are considered ‘cool’.  Warm colours feel happy, bright and vibrant, cooler colours can feel moody, still or distant in artwork.

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Should I Buy ‘How to Draw and Paint’ books?

This is a good question, I must have read hundreds of art books and magazines over the years.  I particularly used to like the ‘how to’ type of books and there is most definitely some value in these types of books.

I would say the thing that I have found most useful however is looking at the work of other artists, going to galleries in particular.  I advise all my beginner learners to take an interest in art, go to a local gallery or if you can the national ones.  Ask yourself, how did the artist use colour? Is it a good composition?  what media did they use?  How did they use the brush to get those marks? You can learn a lot by looking and questioning.

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