Blue is one of the most excellent and desirable forms of light and majestic nature. I have used color in almost every aspect of my drawing and coloring career.
Going deep into working with the color, I have always wondered what colors mixed to make blue. Thinking and pondering so much, I was able to conclude that it is not possible to make blue, as it is a primary color.
The range is very high indeed. But you can go on to make various numbers of shades with the color. Colors like orange, yellow, green, red, white, black, etc., impact a lot in determining those shades. And most importantly, the variation of the amount of these secondary colors concludes with different shades than the others.
A massive chapter about color is yet to open. By the end of this article, you’ll be just wondering about the stuff you have missed all these days about the color blue and its different shades and makings.
And I am sure of the questions you would’ve been thinking then. You got answers to them as well.
You can understand the validity of the color from this saying, at least. Blue is a color having various shades. Arguably, this color produces the most significant number of shades than any other color out there.
Now, if you just carry on finding the source of the color blue, you would be making much from it. Why not go with the most common form of blues, i.e., ultramarine blue and cobalt blue?
Some common shade names like cyan, sky blue, deep blue, indigo, etc., are seen around, right? You can make these from ultramarine and cobalt blue. These two variants of blue are primarily available everywhere, and you will surely get almost all sorts of shades from them.
Don’t just remain stuck with the colors only. Ultramarine and cobalt blue are the primary colors you’ll be paying heed to in this article. And the rest? They’ll be the secondary, and their amount in the mixture will be comparatively low and variable than the base color, i.e., blue.
You’ll be clear as I detail the matter in the upcoming sections.
Most Common Types of Blue Color
|Turquoise||#30D5C8||Blue + White + Green|
|Powder Blue||#b0e0e6||White + Royal Blue|
|Sky blue||#87CEEB||Blue + White|
|Cyan||#00FFFF||Blue + Green|
|Aqua||#00FFFF||Light Blue + Light Green|
|Royal Blue||#4169e1||Purple + Blue + Black|
|Navy Blue||#000080||Black + Orange + Blue|
|Indigo||#4b0082||Red + Blue|
|Midnight blue||#191970||Blue + Black|
|Teal||#008080||Green + Blue|
What Color Makes Blue?
There have been thousands of discussions regarding what actually makes the color blue. People have been finding different shades and variations of the color but have yet to get the actual tone.
Don’t just ponder on the matter of colors that comprises and makes blue. You won’t find any. Because blue is a primary color with thousands of shades, but none can form it.
Now, the thing you can do is to make a true blue out of yourself. How? You can combine cyan (greenish-blue) with magenta (purple-blue). There, you’ll find your desired true-blue color.
With that blue, you can go on to make different shades. Remember, it is true blue, so obviously, it’ll act as the actual blue and help you to get the desired shades.
What Colors Make the Light Blue
Whenever we think of making a color lighter, white pop up in our head, yeah, we’ll be doing the same here as well.
The most feasible and convenient way of making blue lighter is to add a sufficient amount of white color. Now comes, how are you going to do that? I’ll tell you that with some simple steps.
Before that, know that you’ll need a mixing brush, a palette, and the colors in acrylic form.
Step 1: Take some blue color and white color. Cobalt blue should be the one we are talking about here. It is the base color of blue, and you’ll modify it all to get your desired tone.
Step 2: Keep the colors separate from each other. You can keep them at different slots on the palette.
Step 3: Take some blue and white colors in the same slot or spot. Make sure you are getting the desired ratio of lightness you want. I recommend you take more blue than white; because you can make the color lighter later but not get its base tone back.
Step 4: Mix the color, and the blue will become lighter.
Step 5: To make it lighter, you need to add white color, but make sure the amount of white color is not higher than that of the blue.
Step 6: After you are done with the mixing, you can use the color from that specific spot. If you run out of the mixture, add more colors in the same palette and match the tone you got previously.
What Colors Make Dark Blue
What did you think of mixing when you heard that you have to make blue darker? Black, right? My perception and thinking were the same, but that turned out to be a failure miserably.
You’ll have to take the casual blood red. For blue, you’ll need red color to make it darker. Mixing appropriately, you can get make the blue darker.
Now let’s come to how you can do that. The same ingredients you’ll take before; a palette, a mixing tool or brush, and the colors.
Technique 1: Mixing Red with Blue
Step 1: Get the blue and red colors on the palette at different spots.
Step 2: Take the appropriate amount of blue color as per your need to a different side and add a small amount of red to it.
Step 3: You can add the color to the brush or the mixing tool, and you have to mix them accordingly. Keep in mind you have to maintain the ratio of blue higher here. Higher means a lot higher. Otherwise, there are chances that red can dominate the color even being less in amount; it’s the color’s nature.
Step 4: Start by mixing a little amount of red with the blue and observe the result. You’ll see the impact and darkness of the mixture than the actual blue color. It indeed becomes darker.
Step 5: When you are done reaching your darkness of the blue, you can stop mixing. But don’t overdo the mixing; it’ll start to give you purple color vibes here.
Technique 2: Mixing Di oxazine Purple and Phthalo Green with Blue
Step 1: Take the ultramarine blue and di-oxazine purple on a palette.
Step 2: Blue is the primary color here, so you must take more than purple. Don’t overuse purple, as it is known for making colors darker. Start with a bit of purple to the blue, and use your mixing knife to mix and blend them.
Step 3: The mixture you got from di oxazine purple and ultramarine blue requires the final touch of phthalo green. This green, with a slight tint of its nature, makes the darkness reach levels.
Technique 3: With Alizarin Crimson and Phthalo Green with Blue
Step 1: Mix the alizarin crimson and phthalo green. It will give you a darkish vibe or color, mostly looking like black.
Step 2: That mixture is the secondary color. Adding and mixing it with ultramarine blue with a mixing knife will give you the dark blue color you have been looking for.
How to Make Different Shades of Blue
You can make blue color in various forms; light, dark, warm, and muted. Just the application of the additive has to be selective and precise. Without that, you won’t be getting your desired outcome.
Now come with shades of blue. Usually, you can make the color blue in any shade you want. But the desired and most common forms of the shades are dark, muted, warm, and relaxed.
These are the shades of color you see on any color selection screen, be it in digital art software, any photo editing tool or software, or any color variation arena.
Again, you have to consider picking cobalt blue vs. ultramarine blue. For lighter shades, ultramarine is preferable, and for darker, you’ll go for cobalt blue.
Enough of all these! Let’s see how you can generate different shades of blue color. You have already known about the lighter and darker shades above. Let’s know the other ones.
How to make Muted Shades of Blue
Muted shades, be it blue or any color, are low in saturation, not bright but gloomy in sight.
These are the exact opposite of bright or attractive colors. They won’t be eye catchy or bright. Just for a simple reference, do you see the sky on a typical day vs. on a gloomy or cloudy day? The usual bright sky is of soft shade, and the gloomy one is of muted shade.
Remember, it is a shade, not a color itself. So, it is a version of blue color. How to make one? Just mix it out with black, grey, white, or any color that can uplift the gloomy shade from the color.
How? Let’s know.
Technique 1: Adding Black and Grey tones with Blue
Step 1: You take the muted shade color in the palette alongside the blue.
Step 2: Take a separate place for the mix and add the colors as needed.
Step 3: Don’t add too much of gloomy colors at the first mixings. Because if you make the gloomy nature too much darker, you’ll again have to add white to make it lighter. Also, there’s no surety that you’ll get the actual color back.
Step 4: Make the mixing and ensure you get the tone now and then. Once you are firmed with the mixture, you can confirm it.
Technique 2: Adding Different Layers of Blue
Step 1: You add a portion of the initial blue color at a place and take a separate portion for a mixture.
Step 2: The second portion of blue will act as the decider here. You can take ultramarine blue as a mixer as it is lighter. So, you can make it light or dark accordingly to the process discussed above.
Step 3: Add the mixed or modified layer on the initial or cobalt blue as needed. As you’ll make the muted shade, better make a lighter shade. Your goal is the main thing here.
Step 4: Add that shade to the cobalt blue stepwise. Make sure you are getting the tone you want. You can even use white color to the mixture as a whole to make the color look light. Saves a lot of time to be honest, then.
Technique 3: Adding Burnt Umber to Blue
Burnt umber is a dark or deep brown. When you mix it with the blue, they tend to produce a muted vibe, but in darker shades.
Step 1: Take ultramarine blue and burnt umber colors in a palette.
Step 2: Mix a small amount of burnt umber with a portion of blue. Take the blue more in portion; the burnt umber will gradually make the color darker.
Step 3: Assure the final mixture when you see the brightness of the mixture disappears and becomes darker.
Technique 4: Adding Cadmium Orange with Light Blue
Step 1: Prepare light blue. You already know that; you must add an adequate amount of white color to cobalt blue.
Step 2: Take the light blue, add some cadmium orange, and get the mixture with a mixing knife.
Step 3: Mix until you find your desired shade and color. Once you find it, just match the shade with the color chart. There, you can confirm it.
Apart from all these, it is essential to ensure that the palette you are using and making the mixture is completely dry and clean. A portion of dirt or dust will affect the mixture.
How to Make Cool Shades of Blue
One most excellent ways to make the cool shade of blue is to add green to it. But there are some cases. Just like different shades and forms of blue, different shades of green will be suitable for the case.
And obviously, you’ll have to be selective on the shades and mix them. Remember, each shade of green will provide you different shade outcome than the other.
Too much complicated, right? Let me make it easier for you. Always use cadmium green or Veronese green for the shade. Yes, there are other shades to use, but these two are the most prominent and provide you with the most possible results.
So, get the techniques before thinking of implementing them.
Technique 1: Using Veronese Green with Ultramarine Blue
Step 1: Veronese green and ultramarine blue are the most prominent combination for getting cool shades of blue. With cobalt blue, you can just get a brighter combination.
Step 2: Mix the colors carefully in a separate place on the palette. You should check the mixture now and then and then confirm it for use.
Step 3: Apply more green color to the final mixture to balance the tone of coolness. It depends on you how much you want to make it bright. For brighter tones, add more cobalt blue; for darker, add green ones.
Technique 2: Using Cadmium Green with Cobalt Blue
Cadmium green is a little bit warmer than Veronese green. So, when you add it to blue, you’ll add a bit of reddish texture to the mixture. Mix them properly as per portion.
Step 1: Mix the colors as per required. Take the portion of blue more than the green, as green is darker here.
Step 2: Add a small portion of the green to the blue mixture and make the mixture quite calmly.
Step 3: Test the mixture frequently to meet the shade. Don’t overuse the green. Otherwise, it’ll start to give you purple color vibes from the mixture.
How to make blue from Different colors
Enough with the shades and all. Let’s make the color blue by ourselves now.
No, I am not kidding. We have already seen the shades of blue, the secondary colors making blue. Can we use them to make the blue itself?
Let’s find out.
Making Blue from Green
Di oxazine purple is the best medium to work on to produce blue. And when you mix it with green, it produces the primary blue by default.
This is one of the most shocking phenomena because we already know that the color blue is not made able. But Di oxazine purple does.
The color won’t be precisely blue, but it is close and exact to what you’d want. So, by mixing a sufficient amount of green with purple, you are getting your desired blue color.
Pro Tips When Mixing Different Shades of Blue
Now that you know the different forms of blue here, you should be careful while mixing them. Like there can be issues regarding your palette, the base color, the amount, and whatnot!
Yes, you have already heard about them in the above sections, but you’ll be getting them all in sequence here. Follow them carefully and elevate your skill to the next level, not only for creating blue shades but also making other color shades.
- Get the blue prepared by default. It is the base and primary color. You can’t make blue by mixing other colors.
- Light and dark tones of the secondary color matter for the outcome. For lighter tones, always get light secondary colors (yellow, orange, etc.); for dark tones, get dark secondary colors (magenta, crimson, black, etc.)
- Know the proper ratio of mixing. For lighter tones, take more secondary light colors and for dark tones, take more primary blue colors.
- You’ll get different shades of blue in the market (cobalt, Caribbean, Celesan, Prussian, etc.). Their default tone and functions are different. Using them with secondary or tertiary colors, you’ll explore various shades of blue.
- Always use the mixing knife up and down to fill up the whole mixture. This will ensure that you’ll be getting the mixture out of all the colors taken into account.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: What Colors Make Blue Food Coloring?
Blue food coloring is a blend of cyan, magenta, and a dash of yellow. You can keep adding yellow to create lighter shades, while holding the yellow will give you a darker shade.
To create the actual shade of blue, you will only need to mix cyan (greenish-blue) with magenta (purplish-red). You can also make your blue food coloring from fruits and vegetables.
The easiest way is to extract the juice of red cabbage and mix it with baking soda. This will give you a standard blue shade.
Q: Does Red and Green Make Blue?
Red and green are complementary colors. Mixing them will leave you with an unappealing shade of brown. While some people think it is possible to get blue by mixing red and green, you will most likely end up with a muddy brown.
They are typically housed opposite of each other in the color wheel. On other mediums, such as light, mixing green and red light will create yellow light.
So, the possibility of getting blue from mixing red and green is pretty low. You may need to mix other colors the get a blue shade.
Q: Does Yellow and Green Make Blue?
No, pure yellow and green do not create the color blue. Once mixed, these colors will give you a yellow-green shade, which is also known as chartreuse.
Unlike other colors that create something new when mixed, yellow and green do not create any new colors. Instead, it only makes a tertiary color. You must mix yellow with cyan and magenta to get your desired blue color.
Q: How to Make the Sky-blue Color by Mixing Two Colors?
You will only need white and blue colors to create the beautiful shade of sky blue. First, take a generous amount of titanium white and add a tiny bit of ultramarine blue. Keep adding bluer till you get your desired shade.
Don’t take too much blue at first, as you can accidentally turn the color dark. A small amount of yellow and magenta can help you dull ultramarine blue and make different shades of light blue.
Here are some videos to help you understand the concept clearly:
Q: What Colors Make Light Blue Without White?
Light blue is the result of adding white with pure blue. However, you can make lighter shades of blue by mixing yellow with cyan and magenta. The more yellow you add, the lighter shade you will get.
From this, you can create various colors like cobalt, teal, turquoise, and aquamarine. On the other hand, mixing blue with colors like light pink will turn it into a different shade of blue such as periwinkle or lavender.
In CMYK color space, a lighter shade of blue, such as baby blue, is created by blending 43% cyan, 14% magenta, 0% yellow, and 6% black.
So many shades; definitely, you must’ve been confused about all of them. Don’t be one because these are just a glimpse of what colors mixed make blue versatile.
No precautions to say today. But yeah, just be careful with the proportion of the secondary colors. Because if you overuse them, you’d have to make the mixture again, and no one would want to waste colors, including you.
This article is just a glimpse into exploring your creativity with the color blue. So, you know what to do now; use it to the fullest.