Chapter 5: Color Theory & Basic Shapes

5.1 Exercise 1: Hue has value!

  1. Create a new document in Illustrator® using basic CYMK color mode in landscape orientation. Adjust the settings so the units are measured in inches and choose letter from the Size pull-down menu. We named our document hue-has-value.
    New Document dialog box
    Create a new document in Adobe® Illustrator®
  2. Using the Rectangle Shape Tool, draw five squares on the Artboard. Check to make sure your smart guides are turned on. The guides help you with alignment. View > ✓Smart Guides. Hold down the shift key (SHFT) while dragging each square to keep the proportions equal. Evenly distribute the squares by selecting all 5 squares, clicking “Horizontal Distribute Left” under the Align Panel (Windows > Align) as we did in chapter 3.
    Hue-has-value 5 squares
    Using the Rectangle Tool, duplicating and aligning functions to create 5 squares.
  3. For each square, choose a fill color of a different hue with different values. Do not use a stroke. Remember to select the shape before you select a new color from the Swatches or Color Panel.
    Color and value choices using the swatches panel.
    Each square has a different hue with a different value. Choose color from the Swatches panel (above) or the Color Fill (below).
  4. Select all of the shapes by marqueeing over all of them with the Selection Tool or hold SHFT and click each shape with the Selection Tool. Hold the option key (OPT) while dragging the squares to create a duplicate set. If you hold the shift key after you begin dragging the mouse, the duplicate copy will move only in straight or 45 degree movements.
    Duplicating squares
    Selecting and duplicating all squares simultaneously .
  5. Select one of the duplicate squares with the Selection Tool then click on the Color Panel pull-down menu. The Color Panel is located in the panels on the right side of your Illustrator® workspace. The pull-down menu can be accessed by clicking on the down arrow located in the top right area of the Color Panel.  Choose “Grayscale.” This removes the Hue from the square and results in demonstrating the value of the associated hue. Repeat this step for each of the squares in the duplicate set.
    Changing hues to grayscale
    Changing colors to corresponding values using the Color > Grayscale function.
  6. Observe how each hue has an associated value.
    Grayscale results
    Results of hues with associated values
  7. Rearrange each color-grayscale pair according to the grayscale value, with the closest to white at the right, and black at the left. Select each pair (either by marqueeing with the selection tool, or SHFT-clicking on one square followed by the next) and drag it left or right in the grayscale order. Be sure to hold down shift once you have started to drag the mouse as this will keep your movement strictly vertical or horizontal. You may need to select each row and evenly distribute the squares again (see #2 above).
    Reorder of pairs according to value chart
    Reordering of hues-grayscale pairs according to grayscale value

    Save your document.